I’m Retired: Now What?

The excitement of reaching retirement is several decades in the making. The freedom from the daily grind of an office or career routine is wonderful but can also bring some restless feelings, especially for new retirees. Since the average age for retirement is 59.5 years old, today’s retirees are more active than ever and not interested in just sitting in a rocking chair for some of the best years of their lives.
The new lease on life that retirement brings provides the perfect opportunity to try something—or several things—new.
Make the most of your non-working days by…
Staying active. Retirement is a great time to start walking, swimming, biking, or working out more than in the past. Join a gym, a walking club, or just get outside in your neighborhood and enjoy the fresh air. Being active does not have to be a chore, either. You can take up a hobby like sailing or ballroom dancing to get on your feet and have fun while hardly even realizing you are exercising.
Reconnecting. The Internet makes it easier than ever to communicate with friends and family members all over the world and on a regular basis. Think about the people in your life that mean the most to you and take some time to reach out to them. Perhaps you have a long-lost friend or relative that you have been meaning to locate—now is the time to do it. By strengthening your relationships, you will feel more satisfied in your retirement years. You may also be able to mend fences that have been long in disrepair.
Challenging yourself. A lot of people handing out retirement advice will mention doing things you love, but you should also make time to get out of your comfort zone. Take a class at the local college, collect all the boating equipment you need for an open-sea fishing adventure, or enroll in an acting workshop. Take a few risks to keep your retirement interesting. You may even find a new hobby or pastime that you never knew was so much fun.
Helping others. Whether you donate a few hours to your church or the local animal shelter, retirement allows you to give your time to others who need it. Start by looking close to home. Do you have a family member that needs a helping hand at home? A neighbor? Maybe even a former coworker? Anywhere that you can lend a helping hand will make you feel more in tune with humanity and your own purpose. This is not to say that volunteering should become another full-time job for you, but a few hours each month will give you a renewed sense of purpose and can really make a difference in the place where you donate your time.
Retirement is meant to be a relaxing time, but most people still like to have some sort of structure in order to stay happy and healthy. By taking these suggestions, your retirement is sure to be full of fun moments and really can represent the best years of your life.

What has been your favorite part of retirement so far?