It just feels like yesterday that you were working day and night to make your dreams come true, to make progress in your career, to buy a new house, to support your family, to educate your children, to save for those annual family vacations and all of a sudden it hits you, you are no longer ‘active’ professionally.
Yes, retirement and its subsequent phase hit some people harder than others; especially those who have never had the time to sit and think about what they would do if they had all the time in the world. Or how they would deal with the downside of getting older, dealing with loneliness, depression, weak bones, diminished immunity, declining physical abilities, etc.
Retirement for some seems like a curse, which has no cure but that’s not true. You can turn this post-retirement period as a blessing. This is the time that you get to yourself – to do what you feel like doing, to pursue your passions, to sit back and relax, to catch up with old friends and make new ones.
We call them the ‘sunset years’ because we truly believe this is the golden phase of your life. And here’s how you can make sure you live it to the fullest.
1. Mind that attitude
In most cases, it is the attitude that makes or breaks a person. This holds true in case of seniors because ageing causes certain emotional changes that might make a person go through several phases of mood swings at different times. The first thing to do is to make your peace with the fact that you are growing older. Acceptance is the key. It is a process that is to be enjoyed and celebrated instead of mourning the hassles that it brings along with it.
2. Enjoy the new phase
Do what makes you happy. That’s easier said than done, we know but make a conscious effort to indulge in activities that give you happiness and peace of mind. It may mean different things to different people. For instance, you might find someone pursuing their passion for music by learning or re-learning the piano or guitar, but you might be more inclined towards simply sitting back in your rocking chair and reading crime novels. From sports to films and from art to literature, the options are plenty. All you should do is make good use of your time and feel satisfied at the end of each day.
3. Take care of your body
As you age, your body starts to show signs of all the wear and tear it has been through over the decades. It is a natural part of the ageing process and not really something that you should be too worried about. However, keeping yourself physically active and in good shape goes without saying. This is even more relevant to senior citizens because the immune system takes a hit and the bones become brittle. Engaging yourself in sports, swimming, cycling or even practising yoga regularly can go a long way in ensuring a healthy body and mind.
4. Watch what you eat
Preservatives, junk food, foods high in saturated fat, sugary drinks and red meat are best kept at bay during old age. You don’t want to risk developing or aggravating a heart condition, do you? Stick to a well-balanced diet that delivers ample nutrition and then once in a while, you can treat yourself to something you really, really love eating. Avoiding outside food is the best policy in most cases. In fact, we would go on to say that if you have access to a few basic materials, create your own little garden and work away towards growing fresh fruits and veggies that you can savour! This will not only keep you busy every day but also ensure that you eat the fresh produce and feel proud about your efforts in the garden.
5. Make your daily outdoor time interesting
Stepping out of the house to get some fresh air and natural light is a must unless you suffer from a mobility condition that doesn’t allow you to get off the bed. We recommend going out for a stroll in the greenest possible area in your vicinity – whether it is a park or a garden or simply a street lined with lush green lawns and trees. To make your morning or evening walks more interesting, make sure you socialize with other people from your age group and possibly stroll together, discussing everything under the sun!
These are just a few tips – there are several other things that you can do in order to be content in your sunset years. Remember, there is nothing that can stop you from living a healthy, satisfying and happy life post-retirement. You deserve every bit of it!