Challenges from the vacuum caused by the end of one’s active career is something most people do not factor in. But experience shows that the issue is more serious than one would imagine by sitting on the banks. People who have long been salaried and working in the organized sector have, predictably been living their lives by the ticking of the clock.
Then comes the D-day. One does not need to wake up at the same time s/he used to for decades. Breakfast can be at any time before lunch! And lunch can be at any time before tea and so on. The phone that needed to be charged at least twice during the day because of its constant engagement lies on the desk with near full battery power.
Boasts of “Feeling light after long years of work, stress and responsibility” would soon prove to be hollow. It has been commonly found that people who delay their post-retirement activities develop signs of mood swings and depression. Definitely, an unwelcome guest.
Starting a new life the next day after retirement is not easy. One has to plan it in advance. Some of the proven methods are to get into a number of small, yet significant activities, regular periodicity.
An Admiral of the US Navy once said the way US SEAL Team is trained to do bigger tasks is by asking them to do smaller ones first – such as making one’s bed! This applies to the senior citizens also. To prevent or delay a fall or the setting in of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease elderly people have to be engaged in physically and mentally.
So, where can one start? Start with your own courtyard garden or kitchen garden. Experiment with organic manure. If one is a resident in a condo, be a regular at the club house. Try adding a new friend every two days. Get introduced to card games and board games – if one is not wedded to it, already. Volunteering is an engaging activity that has proved to be equally gratifying.
With a dash of imagination, one can easily plan the post-retirement life and make it the wonderful vacation one hopes it would be after years of hard work. There’s a lot to do out there, but planning in advance is key to ensure one doesn’t get stuck feeling empty when the time comes.
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