Retirement often heralds the start of your ‘golden years’ and is the time towards which many of us spend our days working. The prospect of retirement is fantastic on paper: a freedom from the responsibilities of employment, and newfound time to realise dreams and aspirations. But in reality, retirement can quickly become boring – and even lonely – without the right planning in place. What can you do to live your best life in retirement?
One of the most appealing parts of retirement is the freedom to travel – wherever you would like, and whenever you would like. Don’t make the mistake of staying at home and planning to travel; make plans now! Everyone has a bucket list of global destinations, and a good portion of your later life should be spent ticking them off.
Of course, funding global travel may be difficult for some, depending on their savings and pension package. However, it is not uncommon for those of pension age to use an equity release mortgage to fund their travel expenses. The mortgage unlocks part of the value of your home, giving you upfront cash to release your travel dreams.
Pick Up a Hobby
In retirement, your free time at home becomes essentially infinite; you have the rest of your life to fill with whatever you’d like. This is the perfect time to pick up a hobby you’ve never had the time to try before! There are a myriad of skills and disciplines you could learn, from knitting to electronics, and from tap-dancing to fly-fishing.
The beauty of picking up a hobby in later life is the friends you meet along the way. Joining a hobby club or evening class can put you in touch with like-minded folk in a similar position, ensuring you maintain a healthy social life as well as pick up a new skill.
Start a Project
But even with the structure a new hobby can provide, it is easy to feel listless in retirement. With no real goals to define your time, days can quickly feel irrelevant. In cases like these, there’s nothing like a good project. Setting out to complete a major task can help to restore a sense of purpose to your days, while also giving you a key benefit to look forward to.
Your project could be DIY in nature, whether upgrading parts of your kitchen or redecorating your entire home. You could re-landscape your garden to better enjoy it or facilitate guests. You could even combine your hobby with a project; a hobbyist mechanic could buy a broken-down version of their dream car and spend their time bringing it back to life.
Lastly, and though it may be painful to hear, exercise is a crucial part of a healthy retirement lifestyle. Retirement tends to inspire a more sedentary style of living, which can accelerate the onset of certain conditions, especially in older age. Regular exercise ensures you remain flexible and fleet-of-foot, keeping you in the game well into your later life.