Experiencing the Future: Life Prospects for Pre-retirement Age People



Objective. The study of the types of life prospects of people of pre-retirement age and a number of personal factors associated with it.
Background. The relevance of the work is due to the importance of studying the phenomenon of life prospects in the context of a significant event – retirement. The complexity of his experience lies in the fact that it is perceived as inevitable, disturbing and, in this regard, requires mental development, construction of forecasts and plans. The study of the types of life prospects in their relationship with the key socio-psychological characteristics of pre-retirees, financial anxiety as a predictor of the emotional component of life prospects, allows us to identify a complex set of experiences of the upcoming retirement associated with anxiety, anxiety, and uncertainty in the future.
Study design. To identify the types of respondents in terms of their life prospects using factor and cluster analysis, the sample was divided into 5 groups. Further, the identified groups were compared using the Kruskal-Wallis H-test and analyzed by comparing the averages with standard indicators for the levels of resilience and tolerance for uncertainty. In conclusion, using regression analysis, the nature of the relationship between the identified types of life prospects and financial anxiety was studied.
Participants. The sample consisted of 300 people (42,3% – men, 57,7% – women) of the age group 45-55 years old, living in the territory of the Central Federal District of the Russian Federation.
Measurements. A questionnaire aimed at studying the prospects for future retirement (authors T.P. Emelyanova and E.N. Vikentieva), a screening version of the S. Muddy hardiness test adapted by E.N. Belinskaya, "Scale of Financial Anxiety of a Personality" by P. Leahy in adaptation by T.V. Drobysheva and V.A. Sadova.
Results. Five empirical types of respondents were identified according to their life prospects after retirement, which can be conditionally divided into three groups: positive-minded (16,3% of the sample) – their ideas about the future in retirement are distinguished by self-confidence, optimism, readiness to overcome difficulties; negatively inclined (41,1% of the sample) – the prospect of a pension is associated with a feeling of uselessness, despair, lack of faith in outside help, in plans to cut costs, save money; neutral-minded (42,6% of the sample) – they hope for support from the state and relatives (26,6% of them), the emotional background is neutral, some of the respondents in this group (16%) have an unwillingness to think about the future. An analysis of indicators of resilience and tolerance for uncertainty revealed their relationship with the characteristics of life prospects. It was found that a reduced level of hardiness, together with intolerance to uncertainty, creates the basis for the perception of the prospect of life in retirement as hopeless, independent of one's own efforts for many pre-pensioners. They are also characterized by high financial anxiety.
Conclusions. The selection of empirical types of respondents of pre-retirement age showed that only a small part of them build optimistic prospects for life in retirement. Some do not want to look into the future, about a quarter hope for the support of the state and relatives. Disbelief in their own opportunities for a prosperous life after retirement of a significant part of pre-retirees, a negative or ambivalent emotional background, and the absence of constructive plans create the basis for a decrease in the level of psychological health in the present and in the future. Financial anxiety is a predictor of types of life prospects, and as a personality trait, it tends to increase or decrease people's feelings about their future in retirement.

General Information

Keywords: life perspective; pre-retirees; ideas about the future; resilience; tolerance for uncertainty; financial anxiety; ageism

Journal rubric: Empirical Research

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/sps.2023140208

Funding. The study was carried out within the framework of the State Assignment no. 2021–0010 “Socio-psychological factors of the behavior of an individual and a group in the context of global changes”, USISA no. 1021051201850-6.

Received: 22.03.2023


For citation: Emelyanova T.P., Vikentieva E.V. Experiencing the Future: Life Prospects for Pre-retirement Age People. Sotsial'naya psikhologiya i obshchestvo = Social Psychology and Society, 2023. Vol. 14, no. 2, pp. 116–133. DOI: 10.17759/sps.2023140208. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


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Information About the Authors

Tatiana P. Emelyanova, Doctor of Psychology, Professor, Principal Researcher in the Laboratory of Social and Economic Psychology, Institute of Psychology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0458-7705, e-mail: t_emelyanova@inbox.ru

Eva N. Vikentieva, PhD in Psychology, Associate Professor, Associate Professor of Psychology and Development of Human Capital Department, Financial University under the Government of the Russian Federation, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5531-1912, e-mail: vikentieva@mail.ru



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