People who plan for their retirement, emotionally as well financially, are often less likely to feel depressed or have difficulty adjusting to this new stage of life.
Three steps to consider when mapping out your healthy second act:
1. Recreate Your Social Network
It’s likely that when you retire, you’ll miss the easy camaraderie of your office relationships and colleagues. So, in retirement, plan to build social connections by getting more involved in your house of worship, clubs or community activities.
A 2011 study from the Rush Alzheimer’s Center in Chicago noted that staying socially connected cut the risk of cognitive decline by an average of 70 percent.
2. Get Active Now
Plenty of people become more active in retirement – there’s just more time for everything from walking and aerobics classes to golf and gardening.
Want to be one of these people? Start now.
Research has shown that those who already have an exercise or activity routine are more likely to stick with it when they retire.
3. Look Forward to Staying Busy
Volunteering for a cause you believe in can give your health a big boost. In a 2013 Carnegie Mellon University Study, older adults who did volunteer work for about four hours per week cut their risk of high blood pressure by 40 percent.
Other research shows that sharing your time and talents can also lower your risk of depression and even extend your life.
I tell all my clients that retirement is a new adventure and phase of life. With a little financial and emotional planning you can make the transition smoothly and look forward to your journey.