You’ve pushed through mortgages, raised loving families, enjoyed long, fulfilling careers, helped make WA what it is today – now you’re free to explore an invigorating new lifestyle that puts you first. Entering retirement means now, more than ever, is the time to focus on activities that enrich your life.
To really make the most of it, read on to discover the four categories you should be thinking about to ensure that you keep living your best life. You will also find actionable steps you can easily implement right now and will learn:
- How to keep active
- How to keep learning
- How to keep social
- How to maximise your finances.
These categories will help you build a routine that prioritises activities which promote a stress-free retirement filled with things that bring you joy.
How to keep active
If you’re wondering how to make the most out of your retirement, exercise is key. Countless studies have shown that consistent exercise helps increase mobility and reduce aches and pains. Harvard Health Publishing has even dubbed exercise as “the secret to joint pain relief.” It doesn’t have to be an intensive gym session, even light, consistent physical activity will help you feel better for longer, the important part is the consistency.
We recommend simply starting in the home by sitting less and moving more. Instead of watching TV in your favourite chair you can tidy, fold or dust your way through the show.
Have you heard of Tai Chi? Taking an online Tai Chi class from the comfort of your living room is a form of exercise with little strain and it will help you find a little inner balance too. Start with correct clothing and footwear, good hydration and listen to your body. If you feel any strain, it’s time to slow down.
Promote an active lifestyle in your retirement and add one of these to your day:
- Go for a walk
Get moving around your residence, with friends or even tackle some stairs.
- Try an at home workout
Take it at your own pace, you can even follow videos online if you’re stuck for ideas
- Give your home a deep clean
Clean your home for a great way to work up a sweat with the added benefit of a clean and clutter free space
- Get gardening
Create the garden of your dreams and feel the sun on your skin for a great way to increase your daily activity
Make exercise something you love and have fun with it!
“Older adults can boost longevity ‘with just a little exercise’. A Norwegian review of 36,000 cases links more activity overall, light or intensive, with lower risk of death”— The Guardian
Staying physically active as you enter retirement will help decrease aches and pains and support your mental wellbeing.
How to keep learning
It is important to continue to learn new things and stretch out your mental muscles as you enter retirement, in fact, it can help you improve your memory, problem solving skills and grammatical reasoning.
Researchers at the University of Exeter found that older adults who regularly engage in learning based puzzles and activities like crosswords and sudoku, had much stronger brain function than those who didn’t and actually had the brain function equivalent of those up to ten years their junior.
Did you know that this is the perfect time to start a new vocation? In light of the pandemic libraries are currently closed – but members can still borrow! Give the local library a call and see how you can access books you may be interested in. For those looking to take things one step further and develop a new skill, you may be surprised how useful YouTube can be. This online platform is filled with step by step tutorials on virtually anything you can think of. All you need are the materials to start creating. The best part – if you like to take your classes slow and steady, all you have to do is press pause.
There are lots of ways you can keep learning as you enter retirement. Join your local library for a great starting point, not just for the books but also special events and guest talks. For those looking to take things one step further and develop a new skill, you may be surprised how useful YouTube can be. This online platform is filled with step by step tutorials on almost anything you can think of. The best part – you can press pause to take the tutorial at your own pace.
Ready to learn? Use these ideas to get started:
- Read books
Simple but effective, books are a great way to learn new skills or ideas.
- Partake in daily crosswords and puzzles
Keep your mind sharp with daily crosswords and puzzles to boost your brain function long term.
- Listen to the radio
Keep up to date with current affairs, economic news and general knowledge with radio shows like ‘All Thing Considered’. All Thing Considered’ plays every weekday from 12pm on 97.7 to get you started!
- Try out a podcast
Similar to a radio program a podcast is a digital show that you can listen to at any time with formats ranging from talk shows and interviews to deep dives, investigations, storytimes and more. Find podcasts on any topic that interest you on apps like Apple Podcasts, Spotify or CastBox.
- Watch Youtube videos
You can find Youtube videos on any topic that interests you! We recommend channels like How Stuff Works, The School of Life, and Jamie Oliver to get you started!
How to keep social
You may have seen some delightful videos out there of neighbours meeting at their front gates to have an afternoon wine or natter. Give your neighbours a buzz and ask them to meet you at a set time. Make it even more special by getting dressed up for the occasion. Drinks at 5pm could easily turn into cocktail hour. Bring out the suits, ties, silks, satins and pearls and make an afternoon event of it. There are lots of ways you can build your own community in retirement. Stay social and get the most out of your retirement, for ideas you can:
- Connect with your neighbours
Reach out to your neighbours and get to know those around you. You could leave a note in their letterbox or simply say hello when you see them out and about. It might seem nerve racking at first, but studies show that over 55% of people wish they were closer with their neighbours.
- Join your local library
Ask to be notified about upcoming events and attend ones of interest to meet like-minded people.
- Attend local council events
Get involved in your local community, you’ll have chances to have your voice heard while connecting with other locals in the process. Visit your local councils website for information on council meetings and community events. City Beach residents are within the Town Of Cambridge and can find all their relevant information here.
- Organise monthly outings
Get a group of friends, neighbours or family together and commit to a monthly outing to keep connected. A monthly walk is a great idea, and it’s free!
- Fitness Classes
Sign up for fitness classes or recreational activities for a great way to meet new people and get out and about. If you live in a retirement village chances are these services should be readily available to you. Reach out to your friendly reception staff for help.
Make good use of your new found freedom in retirement and focus on spending time with your friends and loved ones.
How to maximise your finances
Maximise your finances in retirement to get the most out of your time. By saving money in your day to day you can spend more on luxury experiences that will leave you feeling truly enriched, like going on a cruise or travelling to a new country. Use these tips to get started on your day to day savings:
- Stay sale savvy
Keep an eye out on local specials and grocery catalogues for some great discounts. If you’re feeling a bit techy you can even set up sale notifications with websites like Price Hipster for everything from groceries to gadgets.
- Get creative in the kitchen
Learn your favourite fine dining recipes and create the restaurant experience at home, pull out your fanciest cooking book or try out one of the Youtube videos you might have found from the ‘How to keep learning’
- Skip name brands
Try out ‘dupes’ for your favourite luxury items for the day to day. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how good some of the cheaper options are.
- Learn to invest!
It might seem tricky at first but for the best return on your money, invest well and reap the rewards. But where do you begin? With much information on the topic it’s hard to know where to start. We recommend Scott Pape’s book The Barefoot Investor, for a candid and frank introduction to the topic and some very savvy tips to ensure you have a solid foundation of knowledge. Once you’ve got your bearings, book a chat with an accountant, book keeper or financial investor that you trust and get investing!
Practise good saving habits early on to ensure that your retirement is comfortable and stress free.
Retirement is your chance to be part of an empowering community where residents come to live, close to people who care. It’s a time of new found freedom. Start that hobby you’ve always wanted to try. Focus on your health and well being. It’s time to reap the rewards of your hard work and focus on what you love. By making time to keep active, keep learning, stay social and maximise your finances, you will truly enrich your life and ensure that you get the most out of your retirement.