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Newly Retired? What to Do with Your Free Time

Newly Retired

Many people look forward to the day they retire, while others anticipate it with dread, not knowing what they are going to do with all the free time on their hands.

Although the stresses involved with work and deadlines are gone, there are other types of issues that come with having more free time. Unfortunately, very few people are prepared for these challenges.

Some retirees feel like every day is like a weekend. This is enjoyable for a while, but they eventually start worrying about what to do with too much idle time.

Physical readiness is not the only issue. People must also consider their spiritual readiness and psychological preparedness. Many people do not realize just how much their careers determine their identities.

Taking away a significant portion of personal identity presents several challenges. To make the transition into retirement easier, consider the following five steps:

Try not to do it all at once. Going from a busy full-time schedule to not working at all can be a shock for some people. The idea is similar to using the cold turkey method of quitting smoking.

One way to ease into a more relaxed schedule is to request part-time work. Gradually reduce the amount of hours you work. You may even find that you enjoy working still, just not as much as before.

Find one or more hobbies. There is at least one perfect hobby for every person. However, it may take a while to find it.

Experts suggest trying several different areas of interest. Some people may want to try growing a garden. This activity promotes mobility and stimulates the mind. It’s also a way to save money on vegetables and fruit.

Yoga, traveling, woodworking, painting, drawing, sewing and other forms of handiwork give retirees something to do that they can be proud of. Tangible items can be sold or passed on to grandchildren as keepsakes.

Go see the doctor. Retirees should not try to do more than they are physically able to do. For example, a person who used to play hockey at age 20 should see the doctor before trying to resume the sport at age 65.

If bone density is too low, a sport that heightens the risk of broken bones could be a quick ticket into a nursing home. See the doctor to get a physical evaluation, and decide what hobbies or volunteer work are physically possible.

Have a spouse-to-spouse talk about retirement. Not all married couples feel the same about retirement. One spouse may want to relax and sleep late, but the other may want to rise early and exercise every morning.

It is important to communicate what is expected. Couples who do not share the same desires about retirement may need to find ways to compromise.

Maintain a good social life. Many people are too busy to socialize when they are devoted to a career. However, it is important to be social after retiring.

People who withdraw and sit at home watching TV everyday can quickly deteriorate physically and mentally.

One way to improve your social life is to get involved in the community and create a schedule to spend time with friends and family regularly.

Allan Block Insurance, Professional Service with the Personal Touch

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