When you’re young and working, retirement planning isn’t always a top priority. Many people defer that kind of thinking until well into their middle years when genuine fears sink in about their readiness for retirement. Retirement years should be something to look forward to—but they only will be if you have prepared. Check out these tips to help you feel ready to face retirement.

The groundwork of retirement planning

Your retirement plan is only as good as the time and money you’ve invested toward that end. Have you been contributing to an investment account and/or putting sufficient money in savings? In terms of your current income, you will need to set back a significant percentage—about 80 percent to 90 percent—of your yearly income. This can be a combination of savings, investments, and other benefits.

Retirement lifestyle

You know what kind of life you want to live when you reach your golden years. Know yourself well enough so that you can plan for travel and other leisure accordingly. You might be able to live a more modest life with fewer expenses than you have now, but for your security, it is good to know that you’ll have sufficient funds to keep you stable for several years.

When to stop working

The timing of your planned retirement will make a difference. More and more, people continue working past age 65 and often work part-time jobs well into their 70s. This might be because they don’t want to completely stop working, but other times, it is more about genuine necessity. Give it some thought because such considerations may help you decide when you want to leave your full-time job.

Health care and beyond

Part of retirement planning is considering long-term health care. Sure, Social Security and Medicare can provide some assistance, but it might be worth your time to think about other long-term care plans as well. Estate planning, acquiring life insurance, and setting up power of attorney all are vital aspects of comprehensive retirement planning.

Getting help

If you’re having trouble with retirement planning or if you just don’t know if you’re ready, you might need help from a professional. In this case, a competent financial planner can help you make the best decisions for your circumstances and quiet your fears by giving you sound advice and information about tax laws, options for savings, and other benefits that are available to you.

Jeff Rose is a certified financial planner and author of the blogs Good Financial Cents and Soldier of Finance.  Learn more about his Roth IRA Movement that has inspired over 140 personal finance advisors to educate young adults on the importance of saving.