This guest post is contributed byåÊAngelita Williams, who writes on the topics ofåÊonline courses.åÊ She welcomes your comments.
For many of us who are on the eve of retirement or who are just entering, you will likely experience several emotions, which can be accurately summed up with the word ÛÏbittersweet.Û For so many years, much of your self-worth likely came from your career. Now that your career has come to an end, you may wonder what you will do with your life (which for many Boomers, will far exceed the number of years spent in retirement than previous generations). Perhaps you will go on an extended vacation with your spouse, but, letÛªs face itÛÓyou likely canÛªt travel forever. So what to do? Here are some ideas to get you started.
1.åÊåÊåÊåÊ Volunteer for a worthy cause.
ThereÛªs no better time than now to devote your time and efforts volunteering for a worthy cause. You have not only the time but also the knowledge and experience to make a difference in the lives of your community and at large. The best part about volunteering in retirement is that there are a growing number of options geared specifically to those over 50. For more information, check out this U.S. News article.
2.åÊåÊåÊåÊ Start or restart a hobby.
As with many things in our lives, hobbies often fall on the wayside when we have a full-time job to perform and a family to feed and nurture. Take advantage of all the free time you have to take up a new hobby or restart an old one. Were you an avid shutterbug in college? Then find or buy your camera and take classes at a local community college to brush up. Do you have a thing for shows like Antiques Roadshow? Then get out there and start going to antiques auctions. Whatever it is that you decide on, become as involved as possible to find fulfillment.
3.åÊåÊåÊåÊ Write letters to your loved ones.
There are various ways we use to keep in touch with our loved ones, more often than not through phone, email, or Facebook. However, when I was young, one of the most memorable experiences of my life was receiving snail mail letters from my grandmother. Writing letters to loved ones, especially the young ones who are just getting excited about learning to read and write, is a great and engaging way to pass the time, formulate your most intimate emotions intoåÊ words, and, most importantly, to draw your loved ones closer to you.
4.åÊåÊåÊåÊ Set goals that keep you physically and mentally active.
Unfortunately, as we age, the saying ÛÏuse it or lose itÛ becomes even truer. Set goals for physical fitness by participating in invigorating activities. You donÛªt necessarily have to have a gym membershipÛÓall you have to do is be active on a consistent basis. Go for daily walks with your spouse, take up a physically demanding hobby like gardening, or join an informal seniors sports league. As for mental fitness, read books that challenge previously held assumptions. Complete various puzzles, play chess with your grandchildren, and stay on top of trends and current events through newspapers and the Internet.
This isnÛªt to say, of course, that you wonÛªt experience boredom in retirement every once in awhile, just like you experienced boredom pre-retirement. The most important thing to remember, however, is that you should look at retirement as an incredible opportunity to do everything you always dreamed of until your career got in the way.