Many people work their whole lives preparing for retirement, as though it’s an end goal to get to. But in reality, retirement is only the beginning of what can be a fulfilling and meaningful stage of life.
Finding your life’s purpose after retirement takes a little work; I’ve compiled a list of some of the things I’ve seen work for people over my 15+ years in financial services below:
Talk It Out
One of my top tips for living a purposeful life is to speak with someone you trust to gain insight into how you want to spend your retirement. This can be a:
- Close friend or family member
- Therapist or life coach
- Clergy member
Speaking with a close friend or family member who knows you well can help you gain clarity on your values and interests, helping you decide what activities to pursue. On the other hand, speaking with a therapist or life coach familiar with the retired lifestyle can also guide you through additional aspects of retirement planning, such as personal finance.
Try New Things
Sticking to the same old routine once you’re retired is a recipe for boredom and depression. Getting out and trying new things is an excellent way to keep your mind, body, and social life active.
- Join a Group: try a book club or other social group that matches your interests
- Get Moving: stay active with exercise classes, hikes, or even walks around the neighborhood
- See the World: take that trip you’ve always wanted to, or explore your town by visiting museums or parks that you haven’t explored yet
- Get a Hobby: take up a fun new hobby or dust off one you haven’t had time for in a while
- Take a Class: learning new things keeps your mind sharp and can be a tremendous source of joy in life
If stretching outside of your comfort zone is intimidating, why not ask a friend or family member to join you for support?
One of the most surefire ways to feel like your life has purpose is by giving back to the community. You can do this in many ways:
- Political activism
- Helping your loved ones with household projects or babysitting
- Doing something nice for a neighbor or friend
Traditional volunteering is an excellent way to add structure to your day, get out of the house, and meet new people, but there are any number of ways that you can do good without a traditional volunteer role.
Take Care of Finances
Personal finance certainly doesn’t look like it has much to do with a purposeful life at first glance. But take a deeper look, and you’ll see how a healthy financial situation can power the rest of your life.
After all, it’s hard to think about things like meaning and purpose if you’re struggling to pay your bills.
That’s why I recommend taking care of your personal finances as soon as you can, so you have the security to enjoy your retirement without having to stress about every nickel and dime.
As you can see, life after retirement is what you make of it. You can pack your days full of adventure, spend your time relaxing with family, or anywhere in between. A purposeful life is as unique as the person living it.
For more ways you can create a meaningful retirement, check out my new book The Fruitful Retirement. In the back of the book there are a few bonus resources that I think will help you on your journey to finding more purpose and looking beyond the financial aspects of retirement.