5 Tips To Enjoy A More Meaningful, Happy Retirement

Tips To Enjoy A More Meaningful, Happy RetirementIf you want to learn how to enjoy a more meaningful, happy retirement, read on to learn the research and 5 recommended tips.

Imagine standing at the edge of a high dive. Below, the vast pool of retirement stretches out. It’s an enticing view – all that freedom, all that time. No more Monday blues, no more emails clogging up your inbox faster than a toddler can create chaos.

Ah, blissful retirement.

But wait, why does the word “blissful” suddenly feel like a pebble in your shoe?

Unfortunately, many people reach retirement only to find themselves lost as to what to do with all this newfound freedom.

Yes, navigating the seas of retirement can sometimes feel like sailing into the great, scary unknown – so I put together this article to serve as a helpful map.

As a leading behavioral change expert, I have been brought in as a “retiree doula” for many people.

I’ve personally witnessed how frequently retired people confess they feel a loss of identity, routine, and purpose.

With my help, I’ve empowered these retirees to make some needed changes. And sure enough, they begin to feel a renewed sense of opportunities for joy, discovery, and personal growth.

So I put together this article, to help more retired people enjoy this new chapter in their lives.

First – Some Interesting Research On How To Retire Happy

happy meaningful retirementBefore I share the 5 main tips on how to experience more happiness and meaning in your retirement, I wanted to share 3 fascinating studies about retirement.

Study 1: The Rush Memory and Aging Project

In the alleys of research, the Rush Memory and Aging Project echoes loud and clear.

This massive study, rolling since 1997, examined the impact of purpose on the aging population.

Guess what the study discovered?

Participants with a clear sense of purpose were less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease, enjoyed a reduced risk of stroke and disability, and lived, on average, longer than their less-focused peers.

Basically, armoring your health with the shield of purpose, deflects unwelcome health blows.

Study 2: The Health and Retirement Study

Next up, let’s talk about the Health and Retirement Study, a national survey trailing over 20,000 retirees. This study spotlighted the direct correlation between a sense of purpose and overall well-being.

The findings?

Those holding the reins of purpose reported better mental and physical health and lower incidences of disability. Basically, holding the compass of purpose, leads to sunnier health shores.

Study 3: The Blue Zones Study

quote Don't worry about getting old. Worry about thinking old. karen salmansohnThen there’s the Blue Zones Study, a global expedition dissecting the secrets of regions where people nonchalantly clock 100 years with a wink and a smile.

One glaring commonality?

A robust sense of purpose.

Yep, “purpose” is like a secret sauce, marinating people’s years of life with resilience, happiness, and robust health.

So, to summarize the above retirement research: Pursuing purpose, meaning, and fulfillment in your retirement is not simply a poetic philosophy for moving forward. It’s a health-harnessing, life-lengthening, joy-jazzing reality.

Okay. Now onto the top retirement tips!

5 Tips To Enjoy A More Meaningful, Happy Retirement

Below are five tips to ensure your golden years are truly golden. And not just a prolonged afternoon nap in front of the TV.

Tip 1: Embrace Continuous Learning

What this means: Retirement isn’t the end of the road, but just a lane change. It’s about shifting gears and embracing the journey of continuous learning. Who said the learning train has to halt at the Retirement Station? Not us, and certainly not your brain.

Research: Continuous learning is like a cozy blanket for your brain, say the folks at the American Psychological Association.

Example:  Martha is a retiree who exchanged her office attire for aprons and embarked on a culinary expedition. Diving into various courses, she’s now not just stirring pots, but also stirring her mental faculties, with sense of achievement and purpose.

Tip 2: Engage in Volunteering

What this means: Roll up those sleeves and plunge into the pool of volunteering. It’s where personal satisfaction and community contribution hold a harmonious dance.

Research: Volunteering is like the multivitamin for your soul. It boosts life satisfaction and emotional well-being, says the Corporation for National and Community Service. Volunteering taps into the Do Good Feel Good theory – that when you do actions you’re proud of, you feel happier.

Example:  John volunteered at a local animal shelter post-retirement. Not only did he make furry friends, but human ones too, enjoying a network of support and shared purpose.

Tip 3: Cultivate New Hobbies or Passions

What this means: Remember those painting classes you always wanted to take or the guitar gathering dust in the corner? Now’s the time to resurrect those buried passions or cultivate new ones.

Research: Hobbies aren’t just for killing time. They breathe life into your days, says the Institute for Economic Affairs.

Example: Meet Lisa, who transformed her green thumb into a gardening venture in retirement, cultivating not just plants but also joy and fulfillment.

Tip 4: Stay Socially Connected

Tips To Enjoy A More Meaningful, Happy RetirementWhat this means: Don’t let your social calendar gather cobwebs. Populate it with plans, people, and palpable connections.

Research: Your social calendar should still be buzzing. Strong social connections are like a gym workout for your mental and emotional health, as highlighted by The Gerontologist.

Example: Look at the Book Club Buddies, a group of retirees who keep their gatherings regular and their laughter robust, nurturing both their emotional and mental gardens.

Tip 5: Prioritize Health and Fitness

What this means: Swap the remote for resistance bands. Keep those joints jumping, that heart pumping, and embrace an active chapter in your life’s book.

Research: Physical activity isn’t just about breaking a sweat; it’s about breaking the monotony and boosting your vitality, says the Journal of Aging and Physical Activity.

Example: Follow in the footsteps of Alex, who trades mornings of serial TV episodes for serene strolls, yoga, and a bit of weight lifting, ensuring his body and mind remain as agile as his spirit.

Bonus Tip: Check out my bestselling longevity book “Life is Long,” which is loaded up with research based strategies to live longer, younger, healthier, happier.

Recap: Tips for A Meaningful, Happy Retirement

If you’re nearing retirement, or already in it, it’s time to chart your course, hoist your sails, and let the winds of joyful and meaningful retirement guide your voyage.

Retirement is not a dead end. It’s a wide-open road, ready for your exploration. I’d love to help you to enjoy the journey – because you’ve earned it. Explore working with me 1 on 1 as your retiree doulee. Book a free exploratory call here.

Think happier. Think calmer.

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