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"I grew up in a household where saving and paying yourself first was key," explains Nancy Paddison, PTA, BA, of MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.

"Prior to coming to MD Anderson, I saved on my own and was always putting money into retirement and stock accounts," says Paddison, who is certified as a lymphedema specialist by the Lymphology Association of North America. "I saved something from every paycheck and put it away every month. Now I've been able to build up a good amount of retirement money."

Paddison's experience reflects the "new normal" of retirement planning. Previous generations could expect to retire comfortably on Social Security and pensions, but things are more complicated today. Pension plans are practically nonexistent, and most retirement programs today are "defined contribution" rather than "defined benefit" — with no promise that the retirement program will provide a specific amount of income.

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