Spending time together in retirement can be challenging!
Avoid the potential pitfalls stemming from over-dependency
and preserve your independence while having fun
We don’t want to be the killjoy here, but retirement is a huge transition, and if it is being romanticized to the point of being an idyllic time of spending time together, and travelling the world, it’s time for a reality check!
The most important thing you could do is to mentally and physically prepare yourself for one of life’s biggest transitions – be it retirement or refirement. Although your school of thought might be that this is your forever-anticipated emancipation from the world of work, it is actually a period of considerable change and adjustment. Just remember you are not yet rocking-chair ready!
The sudden onset of spending more time together could derail even the best-made of plans, so our suggestion is that in your preparation, you consider how you and your partner will live together 24/7, without the diversion of work. Work on the potential pitfalls that stem from over-dependency. Work on how you can both be more socially integrated in order to keep yourselves active and socially involved.
In a nutshell, work on how you can get your partner out of your hair in retirement! Guaranteed this will solve many issues going forward! It is so important for husbands and wives to pursue their own interests and even have some separate friendships. All of this will add to your personal growth, help you maintain your own identity (which you will lose when you leave the world of work), and give you something to chat about when you spend time together.
Pursue interests and hobbies
Having interests and something to look forward to is a key necessity throughout life, and equally critical in retirement. Working out your passions and hobbies in life is important, and if you can’t do it alone, then maybe the answer is to consult a retirement coach or to consult an organisation like 50-Plus Skills where you gain the opportunity to learn, earn and serve.
To ensure you can pursue your interests, it is equally important to consider that as we age, we need to keep moving to maintain muscle and bone strength, and to avoid becoming weak and frail. Even if you have been a couch potato for most of your life, don’t balk at the idea of taking up some kind of exercise in retirement. There are so many benefits that go hand in hand with exercise – things like improved sleep, strength, balance, memory, alertness, mood and many more. Whatever your ability, there is something out there for everyone. Exercise helps you to maintain your independence, grow your interests and make new friends. Think bowls, golf, walking, hiking, yoga, exercise classes and so much more. So no more excuses – it’s time to get moving!
Fun in retirement
And while you are pursuing interests, making friends and embarking on a “moving” regime, don’t forget to have fun, with or without your partner. Sometimes retirees forget how to have fun and be spontaneous, maybe because fun can be considered as non-productive. However, retirement is a time when you don’t need to be productive all the time. So ditch the guilt trip, get out there and have a staycation – enjoy your time in your city, province, country. Encourage your fellow retirees to join you in your time of leisure – these are the times when you make treasured memories.
Whether you are into pamper sessions, open bus tours, tasting wine, enjoying an outing to a motor museum, aquarium, art museum (all at pensioner rates!), there is so much to choose from, so much to do, and for once, plenty of time/retirement time to do it in.
Take advantage of special pensioner deals and discounts for South African seniors, countrywide. Researching pensioner deals has never been easier. Check out the YEI Directory and check out all the wonderful things to do – in and out of season. There are even many freebies like entrance to many botanical gardens.
To wrap up, retirement/refirement is a time to be revered. It is our time, our third life. In 2020, we are not planning our great grandmother’s retirement – we are reinventing ourselves to be the vibrant, active people we aspire to be. The cool granny, the fun grandpa, the amazing friend – let’s try and be the kind of great person who will always be remembered! One who is worthy of the comment “WOW, such an awesome person”!