How Do I Make My Retirement Meaningful?
To create a meaningful retirement, it’s important to be proactive and continue to participate in activities you enjoy. Read on to see how you can make the most out of your retirement.
Updated on Nov 25 2019
Making the most out of retirement
Your retirement lifestyle affects your health, wealth, and overall life satisfaction. As you enter your retirement years, it’s important to set goals. Whether you’re retiring early or just looking for tips to increase your retirement happiness, creating a meaningful retirement will help you live a longer, fuller life.
Start or join a club
Maintaining a social life during retirement is important—in fact, it’s one of the healthiest things you can do for longevity. Now that you’re retired, you have the time to socialize during the workweek. Joining a book, sewing, card, etc. club will keep your mind active and provide the benefits of personal interaction.
Exercise with friends
Exercise and an active social life have been shown to improve health as you get older, so why not combine the two? Walking with a friend will jumpstart your heart rate and your mind as you reap the benefits. A gym like the YMCA offers walkable tracks, swimming pools, and machines so that you can work out to your fitness level. Having a friend join in on exercise can also act as a motivation to regularly get your heart pumping.
Learn a new skill
Since you’re no longer working 40 or more hours a week, now is the prime time to pick up a new skill or hobby. What have you dreamed about doing but have never had the time for? Maybe it’s gardening or learning how to paint. How about picking up baking or birdwatching? Your retirement is all about reaping the benefits of so many years in the workforce. Now is the time to make your dreams a reality.
Adopt a pet or volunteer your time at a humane society
Recent studies show that owning a dog may help you live longer. A pet is a great option to combat retirement loneliness. You’ll feel a sense of purpose and responsibility that you may be lacking without work.
If adopting Fido isn’t in the cards, volunteering at your local humane society may be the right path. Humane societies are always looking for volunteers to walk, feed, and spend time with the sheltered animals. Speak with your local humane society for more information.
Take control of your finances
The most important factor of a long, happy retirement is ensuring that all of your finances are in order. While it’s likely that you have already created a plan with a financial advisor or on your own, make sure everything is going according to plan.
Have you considered downsizing your home? Not only will you earn money on the sale of your current home, but as you get older it’s easier to clean and move around in a smaller house. This will save money and create a healthier environment.
Do you have a plan in place for managing your retirement wealth? For instance avoiding extra taxes, strategically withdrawing, and assessing your retirement expenses? For advice on handling all things money in preparation for your retirement, read our article, “7 Tips for Managing Retirement Wealth Today.”
Whatever you do, find a sense a purpose
What most retirees struggle with is an overall sense of purpose. After the kids have been raised and your career has peaked, it can be difficult to find things to look forward to. Learning new skills, volunteering at nonprofits, and socializing with friends all give mental benefits in your golden years. Don’t think of retirement as the end, think of it as a new beginning. You have the time to accomplish whatever you’d like—so go after it!
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