As folk approach retirement there are some who completely embrace the concept of having many days to while away doing exactly what they want when they choose to, whilst other people will fret about being depressed or feeling lonely. There are many options of course, and if you have always kept busy and interested in life away from work there is no reason to fret.
As most people in the UK will have heard, the compulsory retirement age is to be removed in the next few months and so the obvious choice for keeping occupied is to look for a part time position, which won’t just keep you occupied but bring in a little extra cash too. An existing employer or someone who has known you through your job might be more than happy to use an extra pair of hands, even if it is only on an occasional basis to cover holidays and sickness.
However, such a choice still leaves you answering to someone else, so instead you could decide on voluntary work. A quick five minutes on the internet will confirm that the opportunities for doing this kind of work are merely limited by health constraints and any document of Health & Safety or insurance restrictions which may have been laid down by the organisation you wish volunteer for. But in general terms, the choices available should not be much different from the list of positions for anybody of any age.
Sadly, there are a number of people approaching retirement who are also the main carers for elderly parents or other relatives. This can make the situation more difficult, but if there is already paid help involved in the care process whilst you are at work, don’t just cancel it straight away when you retire. You may think that you can handle the situation, but if you regularly have time for yourself or for joining in particular events away from the house, it quickly becomes a chore to always have to ask someone else to assist if you need to go out, and this can result in resentment and a deterioration in the relationship – not an easy situation when you are both in the same house.
Obviously, if you are the kind of person who has always been involved in hobbies and activities out of the house in your own time, then the probability is that you will carry on with them, subject to any age related health complaints which may begin to make physical activity less easy. But if the joints are starting to ache and the focus isn’t what it used to be, there are lots of other things you can get involved in. And obviously, once you get to a ‘certain’ age, there are opportunities to ask for replacement joints so that arthritis ceases to be a problem, and conventional surgery for cataracts plus, more importantly, treatment for other vision issues which can be resolved with Laser eye surgery are carried out on the NHS if they are thought to be vital – a massive result when Laser eye treatments are usually expensive procedures carried out in the private sector.
Many people may simply look forward to being able to at home but gardening, reading, knitting, sewing, spending time with the family, and if that is what you wish to do then that is what you should do. Obviously, tasks including gardening will also be impacted upon by aching limbs and close work such as sewing and reading can seriously become impossible if your eyesight is deteriorating, so once again, talk to your doctor and get yourself referred to the appropriate surgeons to see if you are eligible for surgical help to improve your mobility and the applicable conventional surgery or Laser eye treatment to enhance your vision.
The most essential thing of all is to get into a routine that works for you and to ensure that you keep active and cheerful. If you find you spend too many days not even thinking about getting dressed or doing nothing but watching daytime television, it’s time to take a deep breath and ask if that’s really all that you ask for from your life. The chances are that hardly any of us really wants to live that kind of existence, so discuss with friends, neighbours and family and set about identifying something that you can do. And if you are still waiting for your hip replacement so that you can get outside and back to gardening, how about growing a window box or house plants and herbs? Or while you wait for that Laser eye surgery, don’t sit and gaze at a blurry television set, but listen instead – music, talking books, radio comedy shows, news and current affairs – they can all broaden the mind and help keep it enquiring, which really can’t be a bad thing.
Tags: Health and Fitness