Conn. (WTNH) — We’ve seen a huge shift in the way Americans prepare for retirement.

The most popular today being account balance plans that you are responsible for, Ted Schmelze, retirement solutions vice president for Securian Financial, said.

“You are responsible for putting money into your account like a 401k or 403b which ultimately will grow overtime, and you would then be able to use that for retirement,” Schmelze said.

Which means it’s incumbent on you to save for retirement.

Schmelze also said it’s really about getting as much in as you can as early as you can, this way, that money can grow overtime.

With that being said, it’s important to think very carefully about what your time horizon is, Schmelze said, noting it’s helpful when you know how long you have to save money.

“It allows you to set versification within your 401k or 403b so you can have the right mix of assets,” Schmelze said.

It doesn’t hurt to speak to a financial advisor to make sure your risk is appropriate to your time horizon. Check to see and learn about an employer match. Schmelze said that this means for every dollar put into the company you work for, the company will match a certain amount.

With everything going on in the world today, we may be checking our accounts more than often, and Schmelze said it’s “important to know where you are at.”

Nonetheless, Schmelze urges people to not let this lead to making any emotional decisions.

“We’ve seen a great deal of volatility because of unrest abroad and Ukraine, the interest rate environment, the pandemic, inflation… all of these things,” Schmelze said. “One thing I’d say is to put it all in perspective, we’ve always had volatility.”

Essentially, don’t panic.

It’s important to understand what your account balance is, where you are and where you are situated, and ultimately, how you can apply your goals moving forward so you can retire with dignity.