Retirement can be intimidating for a lot of people. It was even ranked number 10 on a list of 43 life events that cause the most stress. With declining health and increased limitations, retirement may not sound exactly like the paradise it’s made out to be.
But while retirement may not be complete paradise, there is one amazing benefit that most don’t know about, but all have to look forward to. Improved health. (1)
Retirement And Health
It should come as no surprise to hear that with an increase in age comes a decline in health. What may come as a shock is learning that retirement has shown to considerably improve a person’s health. (2)
When it comes to physical health, there is conflicting evidence on whether or not retirement affects it for the better or worse. Some studies showed a positive correlation, and others negative. But as for mental health, there is a very definite connection, and for these main reasons: (3)
- No work, no stress. In retirement, all the strain and stress that comes with work is stripped away, leaving you much more laid back and relaxed in life.
- More sleep. Sleep seems to be the answer to everything health-wise. And with nowhere to be early in the morning, and no need to work late on overtime, sleep is no longer a distant luxury. More sleep means a much more rested mind.
- Physical activity. With more free time on hand, many retirees turn to physical activities like hiking, yoga, or tennis to fill the extra hours. This does more than pass the time. Physical activity is great food for the brain. (4)
Make Your Retired Life Your Best Life
Okay, so retirement may improve your mental health, but is that really such a big win if you can’t truly enjoy the retired life? As much as people look forward to retirement, it can be a pretty difficult transition. But there are things that can make that transition just a little easier.
#1. Keep Making Friends
Strengthening your social network is a good idea at any time of life, and retirement is no exception. Keep in touch with friends and colleagues, and make an extra effort to meet people any time the opportunity presents itself.
#2. Keep Learning
Learning a new thing every day keeps your mind and brain healthy and active. There’s always more to learn and and ways to grow.
#3. Find Something To Work For
It may be a relief to give up your job, but going from a full schedule to a completely empty one is a pretty drastic change. So get creative! Find some kind of hobby that you can dedicate some time to and really enjoy.
The Adventure Of Retirement
Retirement may not always be a daily lemonade by the pool, or a spontaneous trip to France, but with your mental health better than it’s ever been, and a will to make new friends and start new hobbies, it can still be one of life’s greatest adventures.