Even when we do our best to plan for change, major life transitions can take their toll on our emotions and peace of mind. Retirement is no different. Whether you’ve been working hard to make your golden-year dreams a reality, or the change comes as an abrupt, not-so-welcome necessity, it helps to know how to make the transition from working life as smooth as possible.
Gregory M. Stevens, President of Vantage Point Retirement Living, headquartered in Exton, Pennsylvania, says, “Anyone nearing retirement age knows they need to prepare their finances and create a budget, but not so many retirees consider the personal and psychological preparations they should also make as they near the end of their careers. Just like having kids or getting married, retiring is a huge alteration in the fabric of your life, and the transition may not always be easy.”
At Vantage Point, we believe that everyone deserves to experience the greatest retirement lifestyle possible. Consider how you can make the mental and emotional preparations to transition from work to retirement with a healthy state of mind.
Making a Greater Transition
According to experts like psychologist Irene Deitch, PhD, and author Nancy K. Schlossberg, EdD, the transition to retirement life comes with certain challenges. Most of us form our personal identities by what we do. When that goes away after retiring, it can be difficult to come to terms with who we are beyond our work. Additionally, this phase of life comes with other losses – the loss of familiar routines, workplace friends and social life, a sense of purpose, etc. Unless we learn how to address and cope with these losses, they can seep into our lifestyles and make us feel dissatisfied.
To deal with the challenges that come with this life change, consider the following tips to effectively transition into your new lifestyle:
- Take a Breath – Recognize that transitions happen gradually. You don’t have to have your lifestyle figured out just yet. Take some time to simply relax and enjoy the freedoms retirement offers and give yourself some grace. Maybe you had high expectations for how this part of your life would look like or feel. Let those go for the time being, rest and realize that you have the time to make a plan to get there.
- Take Stock of Your Support Resources – Spend some time thinking about who and what you have in terms of positive resources for happiness and support. What helped you overcome obstacles or challenges in the past? If those things are still in your life, don’t forget about them. If they’re not, think about how you can replace the support they provided. Taking stock of the people who care about you and the activities that make you feel good will come in handy if the transition becomes difficult.
- Define Your Identity – Maybe for the last several decades, you defined yourself as an engineer, nurse, teacher or electrician. You took pride in your work and drew a sense of purpose from that daily role. How will you define yourself now? Think about what you want your retirement to look like and how you want to spend your time. It’s okay to let different aspects of your personality come to the foreground as your work moves into the past tense. Maybe it’s time to define yourself as a volunteer, a student, a grandparent or a good friend.
- Keep Your Friends Close – The joy and emotional benefits we gain from time with friends and social interactions will serve you well during this transitional period. If you miss your work colleagues, invite them to lunch. Or, take this opportunity to go visit old friends and reconnect. Make relationships a top priority to enjoy the highest quality of life possible.
- Stay Healthy – The beginning of your retirement is a great time to practice exercising regularly. Not only do the stress-reducing, mood-boosting chemicals caused by physical activity help you feel good, but you’ll create a good foundation for healthy years to come. Regular exercise will help you stay physically and mentally strong, and ward off injuries and illnesses that could bring you down.
- Set Goals – As we mentioned before, you don’t have to have your lifestyle figured out right away. However, you should consider setting goals for your retirement as you ease out of work life and into your new chapter. Maybe you’re still passionate about what you did for a living and want to continue growing in that area. Perhaps you want to try something new. Make a list of goals for yourself with action steps to get you there.
- Seek Help if You Need It – Sometimes, the challenges of life transitions are harder than we anticipate, especially if they come with feelings of loss, grief or inadequacy. If you find yourself struggling to cope with the challenges of transitioning from work to retirement, seek the help of a friend or third party. There’s no shame in asking a friend for support or going to an expert in mental health for advice on how to feel better about new adjustments.
We Can Help You Retire Gracefully
“Vantage Point Retirement Living believes that the best years are always ahead,” shares Stevens. “Retirees don’t always know where to turn for support on creating the lifestyles they’ve imagined. We’re here to help seniors retire gracefully. Whether they’re searching for a vibrant community or just need advice on where to find resources, our team is happy to help.”
If you would like to learn more about managing the transition from work to retirement or hear about the lifestyles available at our communities, reach out to Vantage Point today!
Experience That Matters.
With headquarters in Exton, Pennsylvania, Vantage Point Retirement Living is a senior living development and management company that has been ensuring area seniors enjoy vibrant, carefree and healthy lifestyles since 1995.
The company is widely recognized for its hands-on, personal involvement within its associated communities, as well as for offering amenities and services that allow seniors to lead stimulating, active lives.
Vantage Point Retirement Living is a family-owned and -operated organization born out of a passion and enthusiasm for seniors. While Vantage Point Retirement Living may be considered a family business, its leadership team has decades of industry experience behind them – bringing together the best of both worlds to provide area seniors with the most extraordinary retirement living experience.
Whatever your interests and needs may be, exceptional living is just the beginning at a Vantage Point Retirement Living community. Whether it be Active Adult Living, Independent Living, Assisted Living or The Compass Memory Care™, living at a Vantage Point Retirement community empowers you to take control of your life while embracing your future with confidence and peace of mind.
We currently own three gorgeous communities in Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania, with four more under development and set to open in 2020.
Values You Can Trust.
In an industry increasingly dominated by large, national corporations, Vantage Point provides a trustworthy, local and family-oriented alternative for people seeking a community they can proudly call home – for themselves or a loved one. Our core values of trust, teamwork, family, friendship, individuality, dignity, respect and compassion enable us to create best-in-class communities designed to enhance the health, well-being and overall quality of life for seniors and their families.
To learn more about Vantage Point Retirement Living and the extraordinary lifestyles we provide, contact us today!