Active adult living in a 55+ community or a retirement village where fellow retirees spend time together in close community may be one of the keys to a happy and healthy retirement. As we walk new retirees through their planning process, we always encourage them to make staying connected to a community a top priority.
Staying connected with family and making new friends typically involves taking on significant projects and healthy endeavors with those groups. Here are a few ways to make the most of your community when it’s time for your own retirement lifestyle planning:
TAKE UP A MAJOR PROJECT OR HOBBY
Service to others and helping family and friends with their needs have been linked to the happiness of retirees. Whether knitting blankets for others, volunteering in the community, or spending time with people who need company, a focused and challenging endeavor can be deeply meaningful and build community during the retirement years. The details aren’t as important as it is to avoid isolation by taking up a worthy goal.
GOOD HEALTH CORRELATES WITH RETIREMENT HAPPINESS
If you want to really enjoy your retirement, then your health needs to be a top priority. Whether that means joining a support group, attending a gym, or joining a group for regular tennis games, an active retirement lifestyle can accomplish the related goals of better health and stronger relationships
STAY ENGAGED IN LEARNING DURING RETIREMENT
Long term mental health is directly tied to actively learning, and retirement can provide a wide range of options for joining others in the learning and personal growth process. Many retirement communities, CCRC’s, and 55+ living communities provide classes and lectures from community members if they aren’t already offered at local community centers. Universities usually provide community events led by their professors, while book clubs offer a social space to cover a wide range of conversation topics.
WHERE YOU RETIRE MATTERS
While staying close to family may be important if you live in a rural area, national polls have found a strong correlation between living in the suburbs or an urban area and being happy during retirement. Unhappy retirements almost double in rural areas. While there could be a number of factors at play, it’s likely that having a vibrant community and a wide range of activities and volunteer options are essential for a happy retirement.
PREPARE TO ADJUST TO RETIREMENT
The majority of people who retire find it beneficial, although enjoyment can vary depending on one’s financial situation and proximity to community. However, don’t underestimate the importance of mentally adjusting to retirement.
While some may be reluctant to leave their occupations or to transition to a new living arrangement, we have seen time and time again that there are excellent benefits for those who commit to making the necessary adjustments. Resolving to find community during the retirement years can make a significant difference in charting a new course forward.
WHAT ARE YOUR RETIREMENT LIVING OPTIONS?
We’ve helped hundreds of families plan their retirement living options. Contact us today to learn more about how we can connect you with the right community in your area.