Hopefully, you are looking forward to retirement with eagerness and anticipation. You envision retirement as a well-deserved reward that you have earned with years of hard work. You are imagining all sorts of ways to fill your days once you are free from the constraints of work and your life is truly your own.
But what if you are unsure about what retirement will be like? Perhaps you’re uncertain about whether you will be happy after you stop working. If you aren’t entirely sure what to expect, this list will give you more things to look forward to. It will help you envision retirement more positively and with greater anticipation. Most items on this list are common experiences shared by most retirees, but your mileage may vary. Here are twelve reasons you will love being retired.
1. You can get up whenever you want.
You don’t have to set an alarm clock if you don’t want to. You may find that you enjoy having a morning routine of exercising before it gets too warm or completing chores early so that you have the rest of the day to spend as you like. But it’s your choice. And while you probably don’t want to sleep too much of the day away, sometimes it’s wonderful to not be jolted out of a blissful sleep by your alarm clock.
2. You can go to bed whenever you want.
You don’t have to worry about getting up for work in the morning. If you are a night owl and you gain momentum as the day moves along, you may be most productive late at night. You may discover that you enjoy the late-night TV shows that you couldn’t stay up for when you worked. Plus, it’s nice to go for a walk late at night when it’s calm and peaceful.
3. You can wear whatever you want.
Even if your job has a casual dress code, you probably wear nicer casual clothes most of the time. If you have to wear a uniform or a suit, this will be an even bigger benefit. While it’s not a good idea to hang around the house all day in your pajamas or sweatpants, you will probably find that your daily wardrobe trends more towards relaxing, comfortable attire like T-shirts and shorts or jeans.
4. You don’t have to deal with rush hour traffic.
You can run errands mid-day or in the evening when there’s much less traffic and stores are less crowded. You can schedule doctor and dentist appointments in the middle of the day when they are more likely to have available times.
5. It’s easier to be spontaneous.
If you feel the urge to get out of the house and do something different, you can take a day trip. If it’s a beautiful day and you feel like postponing your chores and spending time outdoors, you can sit on your back porch with a refreshing beverage and a good book or take a walk in the park. If a friend invites you to get together, you can more easily say yes.
6. You have more time for creative pursuits.
During your working years, you have limited time to spend on activities you truly enjoy, such as writing, painting, music, crafts and hobbies. After you retire, you will have much more time to spend on pursuits that bring you fulfillment.
7. You have more time for exercise and physical activity.
It’s important to include some form of physical activity in your daily and weekly routines. Whether you prefer hiking, biking, swimming, playing golf or going to the gym, you can go on weekdays at times when the crowds are lighter. You have more flexibility to adjust your schedule so you can exercise when temperatures are more to your liking.
8. You have more time to read and learn.
It’s important to stay engaged and mentally stimulated after you leave work. After you retire, you’ll have time to take classes, visit museums, read and learn new things. Best of all, you can explore the topics that truly interest you. You can take courses and not have to worry about being graded.
9. You have more time to spend with your spouse.
This may require some adjustment, because you’ll be spending much more time together than you were accustomed to. You will probably need to work together to design a daily routine that satisfies both of you and find common ground on how much time you will spend together and apart. But mostly, this is a very good thing.
10. You no longer have to deal with performance reviews or status reports.
Office politics, demanding bosses, annoying co-workers, reorganizations and fear of layoffs all become a thing of the past. You no longer have to budget and schedule your vacation days or keep track of how many sick days you have used. There are no more boring meetings. You won’t have to work through lunch hour or work evenings and weekends.
11. You can look at whatever you want on the internet, at any time.
While many workplaces allow reasonable personal use of the internet during work hours, that’s very subjective. You probably see a lot of people checking Facebook, eBay, news websites, stock prices and sports scores at work. It’s a relief to no longer need to be concerned about your boss or your colleagues catching you surfing the net for personal purposes. And since your IT department keeps logs of what websites people visit, it will be nice to no longer have Big Brother monitoring you.
12. You are more relaxed.
You may be surprised at how many of your friends will comment that you look happier and more relaxed after you retire. You will wonder if the stress you are experiencing at work was more apparent to others than it was to you.
When viewed with a positive perspective, retirement represents a wonderful era of personal freedom, relaxation and fulfillment. While it’s true that retirement brings some challenges and your life will change in many ways, you should find that the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. Hopefully, this article has given you more to look forward to and helped you to appreciate the benefits, opportunities and freedom that will be yours when you have control over your life and your time.
Please feel welcome to comment below.
Reprinted from my blog on U.S. News – On Retirement.
© 2017 Dave Hughes. All rights reserved.
Two men wearing beads: Elvert Barnes. Some rights reserved.
Alarm clock: Guilherme Tavares. Some rights reserved.
Crowded freeway: Thomanication. Some rights reserved.
Art supplies: See-ming Lee. Some rights reserved.
Book: Sebastien Wiertz. Some rights reserved.
Woman relaxing: dalliedee. Some rights reserved.
YES! No more alarm clock, driving in traffic, and No more boss! I want to try some creative things that I have never had time for, work in the yard through the week, not on the weekends, and join a gym to name a few. A total exploratory time to learn as I go BUT I plan on working part time first. Gradually ease myself into retirement.