14 Things Happy Retirees Do Well
May 4, 2023
Blueprint Income Team
As you enter retirement, you may find plenty of opportunities to forge your own path and build a comfortable and worry-free life. You can employ different strategies to make the most of your retirement and adapt to any changes in your lifestyle. Check out this helpful guide to discover some of the things that happy retirees do.
Table of Contents
- 14 things that happy retirees do well
- 1. Set new goals
- 2. Establish financial stability
- 3. Find an emotional outlet
- 4. Stay socially connected
- 5. Try something new
- 6. Travel
- 7. Engage in brain-boosting activities
- 8. Mend and renew relationships
- 9. Take on work, your way
- 10. Stay physically active
- 11. Get a new pet
- 12. Practice mindfulness
- 13. Regularly schedule health checkups
- 14. Ask for help
14 things that happy retirees do well
From staying physically active to making new friends, there are countless things you can do to find purpose and meaning in retirement. Here are 14 habits you can adopt to enhance your quality of life for a happy retirement:
1. Set new goals
During your working years, you may have had certain ambitions, such as pursuing a promotion or helping your company reach new milestones. Retirement may seem like a period without objectives, but this can change if you set new goals.
Setting new goals can be a great way to keep yourself motivated and focused on accomplishing tasks. When you're retired, you may have the freedom to explore different things you didn't have the chance to do in the past. For example, you could set out to master a new skill or create a fitness goal. It is important to remind yourself that it's never too late to try something new and take concrete steps toward your goals.
2. Establish financial stability
Your financial well-being can make or break your retirement. If you've spent less money than what you earned for most of your working life, you may be on your way to a comfortable and secure retirement. On the other hand, if you're worried that you might outlive your savings, you can benefit by keeping your finances in order or finding ways to boost your income.
You can organize your finances to determine how much you may have to live on during retirement. Try to gradually reduce your spending and pay off any lingering debts as you approach retirement, which can make it easier for you to adjust to your golden years. You can also receive a steady income by creating a fixed income stream. One way to do this is to contribute to annuities. These financial products can offer you guaranteed, regular payments until a certain age or for the remainder of your life.
Setting aside an emergency fund that can help prevent unexpected events from causing financial strain is a good idea. Ideally, this emergency fund should be able to cover three to six months of your living expenses.
3. Find an emotional outlet
If you have somebody you can converse openly with, you might experience lower stress and anxiety levels. Being able to share your feelings with someone is a kind of therapy that can make you feel less lonely. Likewise, providing a space for others to express their sentiments can also benefit you. Showing empathy to others can make you feel more valuable and boost your confidence.
4. Stay socially connected
Staying socially connected may help you in achieving a happy retirement. Try joining a club or social gathering to learn how to adjust to different situations and develop new relationships. Search for interesting social events in your area that allow you to interact with others. Many retirees fill their free time by doing volunteer work at charitable organizations and events. Volunteering can expand your social circle and give you a chance to make a difference in other people's lives.
5. Try something new
Whether it's with your health or daily activities, getting stuck in a rut during retirement is possible. However, doing something different can be a nice, refreshing change to your lifestyle. Implement simple changes to your routine, such as trying a new recipe or reading the latest best-selling book. Incorporating exciting hobbies, like taking a dance class or exploring a new hiking trail, can give you a renewed zest for life.
If you've always wanted to go on a road trip, visit a friend in another country, or take a cruise around the world, you can finally turn those plans into reality after retirement. Traveling lets you explore new places and cultures while rejuvenating your mind and spirit. If you're unable to make long trips, taking mini breaks can be a good alternative, such as day trips to nearby places you haven't visited before.
7. Engage in brain-boosting activities
There are numerous ways you can boost your mental abilities during retirement, such as completing puzzles or learning a new language. If you want to prove to yourself that you've still got it, try playing brain games that require solving difficult problems. Other things you can do to keep yourself stimulated include participating in weekly card games with friends, practicing yoga, trying a new sport, or learning to play a musical instrument.
8. Mend and renew relationships
If you still reside in the area where you attended high school or college, you may find it worthwhile to check in on old friends and acquaintances. There's a possibility of finding someone who's also looking for companionship or shares a common interest with you. Additionally, now is an excellent time to reach out to your family members and smooth out any problems that may have strained your relationship with them. Establishing close connections with your family when you're retired can be very important, and shaky relationships are often salvageable.
9. Take on work, your way
You can have a retirement schedule that's less demanding and stressful than your previous routine, but you don't need to avoid every form of work or activity. If you have a few hours to spare every day, you may want to look for a part-time job that you find enjoyable and fulfilling. Consider small business consulting, volunteering to help others prepare their taxes, or becoming an online tutor. You can still maintain some flexibility in your schedule to take rest days at home or travel at your leisure.
10. Stay physically active
If you've yet to make exercise a part of your daily routine, you can add it to your list of things to do. At the very least, it's a good idea to do about 150 minutes of moderate physical activity weekly. That's about 21 minutes per day. One effective way to stay fit and healthy is to incorporate manageable activities into your exercise plan, such as strolling in the park or taking nature walks in the woods. Since fresh air and exercise can be instant mood boosters, these activities can help you improve your overall well-being.
11. Get a new pet
Aside from being a companion, a pet can benefit your physical, mental, and emotional health. People with pets may be happier and less lonely because they feel a stronger sense of belonging and purpose. They also get regular exercise as they need to walk their furry friends frequently. If you're unsure whether you want to own a pet, you can first volunteer to care for someone else's pet or work at a local animal shelter to get an idea of how it feels.
12. Practice mindfulness
Mindfulness is a form of meditation that can help you become more aware of what you're feeling and sensing at a particular moment. It can also be an effective strategy for alleviating stress, anxiety, and depression. Through meditation, you can strengthen an area of your brain called the hippocampus, which is responsible for maintaining memory and concentration. Besides being extremely rewarding, mindfulness is also a simple activity that requires only 10 to 20 minutes of daily practice to be beneficial.
13. Regularly schedule health checkups
As you get older, you might become more susceptible to age-related conditions such as heart disease, kidney disease, diabetes, stroke, and dementia. Therefore, it is recommended that you go for a health checkup at least once a year to assess your risk of these diseases. If you have a chronic health problem, early diagnosis can significantly increase your chances of being treated successfully, allowing your physician to provide care at the earliest possible stage.
14. Ask for help
During the early retirement years, taking care of your home and maintaining your retirement lifestyle may seem easy. If you reach a stage where you're unable to complete certain tasks, you may need assistance. Family members, relatives, and friends can help you mow your lawn, prepare meals, or buy groceries. Professional care providers can do housekeeping and other chores if you can't handle them on your own and prefer hiring someone to help you. In addition to these healthy habits, you may want to consider taking effective measures to boost your income, which can help you have a relaxed and happy retirement. Annuities are a great financial option as they can guarantee a stable stream of income to help you from outliving your retirement savings.
If you're interested in annuities, our experts at Blueprint Income are here to help. With a network of more than 30 leading insurance companies, we can provide you with an annuity that perfectly suits your financial goals and lifestyle. Get started with our questionnaire for more information on annuities and your financial future.
Blueprint Income Team
We are a team of finance, insurance, and actuarial professionals working to make it easier for everyone to achieve a steady and comfortable retirement. We write about annuities (the good and the bad) and provide strategies to help Americans prepare for retirement.