Now What? Tips For Adjusting To Retirement

Written by on July 7, 2013 in Family - No comments | Print this page

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RetirementMost of us have to work all of our adult lives, and our jobs often become a major part of our identity; we devote quite a chunk of our day to our profession, and retirement can leave us with lots of free time and no idea how to fill it.

While retirement presents a wonderful opportunity to spend more time with family, travel and devote more energy to our passions, many people do not transition so smoothly into this new chapter of life, which can negatively impact not only emotional well-being, but your physical health as well. Here are some top tips for adjusting to life post-work.

Accept the Emotions that Come

One of our biggest issues in dealing with situations that upset us is not being accepting enough that we are upset, and that it is understandable to be upset.

Retirement is a huge transition and you may feel a little lost, like you have no sense of purpose; you have friends at your job that you may no longer see very often, if at all.

While a part of you is excited for the adventures that lie ahead, there is another part of you that may be mourning the life that you no longer have. Do not fight the feelings, just accept them and know they are okay.

Keep Your Mind Active

Keeping your mind active is important for lots of reasons; it may decrease your risk of developing dementia and it will improve your emotional well-being among other benefits.

There are plenty of opportunities to stimulate your brain. Perhaps you can enroll in classes at your local college. Is there a skill you have always wanted to learn? Go for it.

Always wanted to learn Spanish? You do not even need to leave your home—you can pick up lots of quality computer program, such as Rosetta Stone. It is never too late to start learning something new.

Prioritize Relationships—Old and New

Maintaining contact with old friends ,and setting out to meet new ones, is paramount to a happy retirement. Since there are many people you may not be seeing every day, you have to expend a bit more effort to keep in touch.

Work out regular times to meet. Perhaps you can have a standing lunch date once a week or take part in a hobby together, like class of some sort.

Because of the importance of being near other people in retirement, you might consider an independent living facility, which is designed for healthy adults who want to live among peers; these communities have many benefits as well, such as providing activities for tenants and taking care of many home maintenance issues you may not want to deal with any longer.

Find the Balance Between Being and Doing

Retirement is not about withdrawing from life and rocking on the porch all day; it is important to keep active, but it is also important not to feel pressure to fill up each and every day with activity. Doing nothing is perfectly okay sometimes.

You need some time to decompress from your old life. Give yourself a chance to just slow down and see where retirement leads you. You may be surprised at the direction. Avoid making any major time commitments right away.

Kelli Cooper is a freelance writer who blogs about a variety of topics related to healthy retirement.

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