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There are two major secrets to retirement planning: saving and time.

It sounds simple. So, why do so many of us put it off? Investing seems daunting. Something else always needs our money. We’re young and we can save tomorrow. We’re older and it feels too late.

Retirement planning requires we change our money habits and delay gratification.

If you’re ready to change, let’s circle back to saving and time. No matter what your age, the two things that will help you most are putting in place a regular, disciplined plan for saving and using all of the time available between now and the date you wish to use those savings.

Retirement savings can take a variety of forms, such as a 401(k), 403(b), IRA or pension plan. Look first at what your employer offers. If you work for a church or a church-related organization, you can call Pension Fund for help. Learn all you can about what is offered so you can make choices that are best for you, and begin right away.

Use the time value of money to grow your investments. If you invest $100 per month at a rate of 5% for 40 years, your $48,000 investment will grow to $153,237.85. That’s $105,237.85 in interest. Time allows for growth in your market investments as well. Your portfolio can handle downturns in the market if you’re further from the date you’ll need your investment funds. As you near retirement, you can move to a less risky portfolio mix. Pension Fund provides great retirement programs that provide growth to your investment without having to manage a portfolio, so there is minimal risk.