Adjusting to retirement, like most things, takes a bit of contemplation and planning in order to gain its fullest benefits. Many eagerly anticipate this stage of their lives only to be a bit disillusioned when it arrives.
Let’s take a more proactive approach so that we can smoothly transition into this phase of our lives in a much more joyful manner. We may then be surprised that this part of our lives is not so much an “ending” of our careers, but just the beginning of a whole new world filled with opportunity and adventure.
Adjusting to Retirement with a Purpose-Driven Mindset
It is so important to be proactive in planning for and moving into retirement. It is all too easy to feel a loss of identity when leaving a career in which we have spent so many years. This goes beyond whether we liked what we were doing or not. It was something we identified with at least to some extent, and now we may feel a bit isolated.
Also, more time and less money also require an adjustment. Many folks get a bit anxious and depressed when faced with this type of adjustment. But it is okay to feel a bit lost and uncertain.
The different emotions that we experience are feelings that surface due to circumstances in our lives. It is good not to deny them but experience the feeling without getting stuck in it.
Being proactive with a purpose-driven mindset can mean taking a walk, hooking up with some friends, reading, writing, playing some tennis or golf, going fishing, doing some yoga or Tai Chi, or whatever floats your boat. The important thing is to take charge and consciously decide to break the pattern of any fear or worry.
If finances are a challenge then decide if some part-time work will fill the income gap or if you may prefer learning a new skill or starting an online business that capitalizes on your previous skills and experience.
The key point is that with a purpose-driven mindset there are many retirement options available. It is never too late to reinvent ourselves and create the ideal retirement lifestyle.
For those who would like to learn a new skill as well as create additional income on a semi-retired basis here is an Online Training Platform that allows you to earn while you learn. This is a great way to structure your day so that you are productive and engaged with plenty of time left over for family and other fun activities. With a purpose-driven mindset, anything is possible.
Some Practical Ideas for Adjusting to Retirement
Depending on individual circumstances adjusting to retirement will differ for each of us to some extent. But there are some practical things to be aware of so that our transition into retirement is less stressful and more harmonious.
- Downsize a Bit — this can definitely help with the budget and also time spent maintaining a large home. This can mean a smaller home, condo, or apartment, or even a retirement community with all the amenities such as entertainment, classes, golf and tennis facilities, nature trails, and some even have medical facilities. Also, a smaller and more efficient car may make sense as well.
- Create a New Budget — creating a budget not only ensures that you have enough to live on but also preserves your savings so that you can maintain your desired lifestyle. It is never too early in life to create a budget and monitor your finances. Nevertheless, it is never too late to get started creating a budget or modifying your current budget to adjust for new priorities. You’ll find that you spend less on some stuff and more on other things. This can be done with paper and a calculator or by using one of the available software programs. Always keep in mind when you reach senior-level age there are numerous discounts. Check out AARP for more information on this.
- Do Some Volunteer Work — this is a great way to stay engaged in life in a purpose-driven way. Based on your interest there are numerous opportunities available such as museums, animal shelters, schools, hospitals, churches, and the United Way. Other good sources for locating volunteer opportunities are Volunteer Match and Senior Corps.
- Learn a New Skill or Hobby — there are plenty of opportunities online as well as in community schools and colleges to learn new skills that you may have put off during your full-time working years. Now is the perfect time to get engaged.
- Spend Time with Friends and Family — regardless of age always cherish time with friends and family. Life is so short and each moment is precious. It is all too easy to get distracted or take things for granted. Quality time with family and friends is invaluable.
- Be a Mentor — all the experience you’ve acquired over the years can be shared at colleges, technical schools, online classes and webinars, or as a Life or Business Coach. You can mentor small business owners through SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives).
- Stay Active and Exercise — regardless of your current physical state, some moving around is helpful for both physical and mental health. Interacting socially with others as well as setting up a daily exercise routine brings many benefits. There are many classes and programs at the local senior centers. They have fitness instructors who are trained in working with seniors. If you haven’t exercised in a long time check with your doctor first so that you don’t overdo it. There are many recreational and social activities at the senior centers as well.
- Reward Yourself for Staying Engaged and Being Productive — take time during the day to reward yourself with fun activities for staying engaged in different projects. By doing this you are more motivated to continue in any new activities and form new beneficial habits while adjusting to retirement.
- Do Some Part-Time Work — there are many benefits in staying involved with work after retiring both financially and socially. Extra money is always nice regardless of your current financial situation, but we feel better mentally and emotionally while interacting with different folks during the day. Some companies allow you to transition to flex-time or part-time work, while here are some of the best semi-retired jobs to consider.
Above All Enjoy and Have Some Fun as You Adjust to Retirement
Beyond the fantasy of how retirement is “supposed to look like”, the stark reality does not have to be filled with worry or stress. Sleeping in, taking trips, and having time for favorite hobbies can be part of the experience, but adjusting to retirement can be a “New Beginning” as well.
As I have stated above we have many options, and whatever our circumstances the “fun starts now” whether we are retired or not. Embracing a purpose-driven mindset will keep us vibrant, alive, and young at heart.
By entering the retirement process with an empowering mindset, we are able to make decisions that bring fulfillment to our days. Needless to say, there will always be challenges but they are what keep life interesting and us growing as a person.
A good thing to keep in mind is that our point of power is in the present moment and nowhere else. That means when we are focused on what we are currently doing, there is no room for past regrets or future worries. I challenge each of us regardless of our stage of life, to live fully now so that adjusting to retirement becomes a so-called “walk in the park”.
All the very Best,