dreamstime_s_41977455.jpgFour-and-a-half million retired Americans over age 50 have gone back to work or taken on volunteer roles, with another 21 million are ready to join them. Why is this the case? Some want to continue using their talents, some crave more social interaction, some just want to keep their minds sharp and their bodies busy and the extra money certainly doesn’t hurt.

There are some big financial benefits to rejoining the workforce. You can potentially forgo annual withdrawals from your retirement funds by going back to work, allowing them to continue to grow. You can potentially delay Social Security and realize those 8 percent per year increases from age 66 to 70—guaranteed increases that just aren’t available in any other investments in today’s world. That’s what you get by delaying Social Security.

You can use the extra income earned from going back to work to support lifestyle, but there are many other reasons people un-retire. It’s about quality of life. It’s to be invigorated and have more social interaction. When you’re preparing for retirement, it’s not just about money, but it’s also about how you’re going to spend your time. Some people thrive in retirement. They are busier today than ever and they say, “I don’t know how I got everything done when I was working. I’m busier now than I was when I was working.” The difference, though, is that they are busier doing the things that are most important to them. They may be working part-time because they want that interaction, but they are able to do other things.

Volunteering one’s time can be very satisfying. Again, it’s this healthy perspective between money, life and understanding the goal is not to sit around and do nothing. Retirement is about what the rest of your life is going to look like. How are you going to get involved, be invigorated and be with the people you love?

If you’re already retired you might already be doing these things, but if you aren’t, think about starting to add some regularly scheduled activities to your routine every week. Planning for retirement is not just a financial exercise, it’s also planning for your time, social interactions, and how to stay physically and mentally sharp.

It’s important to have a plan for how you are going to focus your time, not just your money.