When you're in the early or middle parts of your working career, retirement can seem like nothing more than an impossible dream. But at some point, usually during your mid-40s, the idea of no longer working starts to become more of a reality. This is when you begin to ask yourself: "Can I actually do it? Can I retire early?" Does this scenario sound familiar?
This is by no means an easy question to answer. If it were, it wouldn't be the No. 1 question I hear as people enter the second half of their careers. While I believe almost everyone should get the advice of a professional certified financial planner when making this decision, there are some ways to start figuring out how close you are to realizing your retirement dreams.