The prospect of leaving the workforce is not always welcome, so this milestone tends to elicit a mix of emotions. For some people, the idea of being retired can be exhilarating, and for others, it can cause anxiety. Retirement is a complex experience, and it can be a difficult adjustment; that being said, there are some things that you can do to aid the transition and make it a little smoother.
Identify Your Anxieties
The first step to easing into your retirement is to identify any roadblocks that you feel might be preventing you from looking forward to your retirement. Once you have identified these social, financial, or whatever, you can begin to address them.
You cannot and should not expect this transition to be easy. It is a slow process, and it won’t happen overnight. Your emotions may change from one day to the next, and that is perfectly normal. So be patient and be kind to yourself.
When you reach retirement age, you are entitled to a lot of offers and discounts. They are one of the perks of being retired. Take advantage of them. From cheaper public transport to restaurant discounts to vehicle insurance, saving a little money while retired is always a good thing. Do your research to find out what you are entitled to. For example companies like The Hartford offers car insurance exclusively to AARP members.
Take Up Some Hobbies
Retirement is a great time for you to think about your passions. What are you interested in? Can you turn these things into a hobby? There are many inexpensive or low commitment hobbies that you can pick up, from knitting to birdwatching. There are a lot of options out there, and finding something to fill up some of your time can ease the transition.
Maintaining and building your friendships is important. You need people to confide in who understand how you are feeling. Try to make it a point to regularly connect with your friends or make new friends through your new hobbies if possible. Feeling isolated is one of the worst things that you can do when retiring.
Being out in the fresh air and doing some light exercise is a great way to increase your mood and relieve stress. It also helps to keep you healthy and ward off any illnesses. You could combine a few of the above points and pick up an outdoor hobby, or you could arrange to meet your friends outside regularly for a walk.
If you miss the routine of being a part of the workforce, you could find ways to volunteer your time for a couple of days out of the week. This provides more structure to your week, and it can also help you when you are making that initial transition from employment to retirement. In addition, you can look online to find volunteer opportunities in your local community.
Making such a big lifestyle change is never easy, but you can make it easier by taking on the above advice. Some people find that their retirements consist of some of the best times of their lives despite the initial growing pains.