After many years of hard work, you and your other half have both finally reached retirement age. So, what next? Reaching retirement is a cause for celebration for most people, and many couples envisage a life of leisure where they can pursue their passions. Although retirement can be an enjoyable experience for two people, it can be difficult getting to grips with all that free time. Here are a few ways to help you live happily ever after with your partner in crime.
Get to Grips With Retirement
When you reach the golden years and find yourself with an empty schedule, it is normal to feel like you are on an emotional roller coaster. You may feel relieved that you have reached retirement and happy that you now have all the time in the world to spend with the person you love. However, after this initial ‘honeymoon’ period, you may begin to wonder what it is you should be doing with your time. In fact, this sudden change of pace can put a strain on a relationship. When faced with an extensive amount of time with your spouse, it can be easy to take them for granted and become irritable with them. Try to have a little patience with each other and treat each other with compassion. You both need to give yourselves time to transition into this new period.
Get to Know Your Partner All Over Again
With so much time together, it can be easy to put your relationship on the backburner and stop paying attention to your partner. Take the time to get to know your loved one all over again. Simply going for leisurely afternoon strolls together can help open up communication channels. Focus on how you are both coping with retirement, any worries you both have, and just take the time to chat to each other as you did all those years ago. By becoming each other’s confidantes and hashing it out regularly, you can foster the trust and security that will help reconnect your marriage. With good communication, you are more likely to transition into retirement peacefully.
When faced with a long, empty day, you may naturally lean on your partner for companionship, especially if retirement is new for you. However, your other half may already have a routine that works for them. Don’t expect them to drop everything just because you are bored. Although they might be willing to ‘entertain’ you, it isn’t fair for your partner to give up the lifestyle they have built and come to enjoy. Try to give your spouse some space and make a note of how they like to spend their days. At the same time, try to figure out a routine for yourself. Once you both understand each other’s patterns, you can marry up your schedules in a way that is considerate for both of you.
Discuss the Future
If you haven’t already, take the time to think about your living situation in the future and consider your options. Although you may both be happy where you are now, it may be beneficial to join a senior living community in the future. There are different types of senior living communities, for example, Belmont Village senior living in Chicago provides independent living, assisted living, and memory care. If you are both autonomous and enjoy an independent lifestyle, independent living is a great option for you. Assisted living is ideal for people who need a helping hand with activities of daily living, while memory care is specifically geared towards older people with debilitating memory disorders.
Aging Together in Senior Living
The Belmont Village Lincoln Park senior living community in Chicago is fantastic for couples who want to spend the rest of their days together in the same space. This community is equipped with specially trained staff and an experienced management team who can provide couples with tailored care to suit their unique needs. In addition, residents can enjoy social events and participate in enriching activities with other like-minded people.
Discover the United States
Couples who wish to remain closer to home can set out on a journey across the United States. Road trips are a fun and flexible option, and they can be combined with social visits to family and friends who you haven’t seen in years. Traveling behind the wheel of an RV can give you both an enormous sense of freedom. Not only can you stop wherever you want, depending on state laws, you can also save money on hotels.
Do Something Worthwhile
Doing something that makes a difference can give you a sense of purpose. In turn, this can improve your quality of life. Volunteering your time to a worthwhile cause will allow you to contribute to society while giving you the feel-good factor. Volunteering is also a great way to spend meaningful time with your spouse. Try to find a cause that you both believe in or a charity that you are both passionate about. Together, make a list of organizations and charities that you would be interested in donating your time to. Next, think about how you want to volunteer. For example, if you both have a passion for the arts, why not volunteer at your local theater or museum. Alternatively, if you possess specialist skills, you can offer your expertise to young people at your local community center.
See the World
Many people have a travel bucket list with destinations they want to tick off. With all of the flexibility in the world and money that has been building up in the bank, retirement is the perfect time to explore new places. Whether it’s a long cruise with multiple stopovers or a dreamy destination that is half the world away, speak to your spouse about potential options and narrow down the list together. You probably already know what your partner’s dream destination is, so if you are game, then all you need to do is plan. With an open schedule, you can take advantage of cheap, last-minute travel tickets.