While in the trenches of your 9-5, you may dream of a stress-free retirement with no obligations or to-dos. After all, you’ve worked hard your whole life; you deserve some relaxation! While this may be true, we often find that retirees feel unfulfilled during retirement, often experiencing decreased life satisfaction. The feelings of being needed, respected, and valued at your profession are now gone, and they can often be replaced with feelings of discontentment or depression.
Here’s the good news- it is very possible to experience purpose and fulfillment during your retirement years. In fact, with appropriate planning, you can enjoy increased life satisfaction as you focus on discovering and pursuing your passions.
So, as important as it is to prepare financially for your retirement years, such as inquiring about social security planning services, it is just as essential to plan for the emotional changes that those years bring. Consider these 4 tips to enjoy purpose and fulfillment during retirement.
Ease into it
If your career/situation allows for it, we often encourage clients to “ease into” retirement. This could include working less intensively, cutting hours, or working part time for a few years before retiring completely. We have found that working longer and less intensively until full retirement helps retirees emotionally cope with the changes that full retirement brings.
Additionally, a 2014 study* found that people who waited longer to retire had a significantly lower chance of experiencing dementia later in life. Other findings** have shown strong correlations between early retirement and cognitive decline. Likely, this correlation stems from retirees experiencing boredom and decreasing the time they spend developing their mental and physical capacities. It seems that the mental exercise you experience while working has incredibly positive effects on the brain. So, if possible, ease into your retirement by working more years at a slower pace. Turns out, this practice can help you emotionally, mentally, and financially.
Regardless of whether or not you choose to “ease into” retirement, it is essential to continue to exercise your mind and body.
Many retirees tend to stay “busy,” claiming that their time is packed full with vacations, grandkids, golf, and more. However, it is important to distinguish between being busy and finding true fulfillment. Your days can be full of things, even things that bring you joy, but if you aren’t creating purpose in your life, you will feel like something is missing.
The key to creating purpose in retirement is continuing to exercise your mind and body. Perhaps this entails finding a new hobby, teaching, studying a new topic, mentoring, or volunteering. Whatever your passions are, continue to set goals and work to accomplish them.
Have a Plan
Every day, we help future retirees prepare financially for retirement. However, just as important as financial preparation is preparing for the personal side of retirement. In fact, these two things go hand in hand.
What kind of retirement do you want? What things will make you feel fulfilled? Before you retire, consider and explore passions and hobbies that make you feel fulfilled. If you love traveling, plan for travel. If your passion is family, plan to spend time and do activities with those you love. If you desire to participate in humanitarian work, put that in your plan as well. Once you have a plan for the lifestyle you want during retirement, make a plan to fund that lifestyle.
That is where a financial advisor comes into play. Here at TrueNorth Wealth, we have experienced advisors for the sale of businesses, wealth management, retirement planning, and much more. That means we are trusted financial planners who specialize in creating retirement plans that are catered to your own individual circumstances. We will aid you in the creation of a plan that helps you prepare both financially and emotionally for your golden years.