10 Tips to Face Retirement in a Positive Way

In order to experience retirement in a positive way, it's important to redefine this stage and work on your prejudices. Learn some tips here.
10 Tips to Face Retirement in a Positive Way
Maria Fatima Seppi Vinuales

Written and verified by the psychologist Maria Fatima Seppi Vinuales.

Last update: 18 July, 2022

Many people tend to experience retirement in a negative way, as they associate it with old age, passivity, and boredom due to a lack of projects. This often comes from the fact that we reduce productivity to its economic aspect. However, it is possible to face retirement in a positive way.

It’s the closing of a stage that serves to give way to a different and new one, in which enjoyment and the possibility of having more free time take center stage. Let’s take a look at how to redefine this moment in life.

Retirement is a stage with its own nuances

First of all, it’s important to differentiate between retirement and aging. Perhaps for this reason it’s also experienced by many as such a dreaded situation.

Retirement means the cessation of mandatory work activity. Of course, this will depend very much on the working conditions of each person. Those who have their own business can continue with it or reduce their daily workdays, among other options.

Although not all of us are in the same conditions, it’s true that today, aging occurs much later and is a very different experience than it used to be. For this reason, retirement can be the gateway to allowing quality free time.

It’s also important to remember that retirement is a new stage, and it’s necessary to remember that accepting it will have its ups and downs. That is to say, there will be ideal moments in which we will be delighted with our free time; while at other times, we may feel bored or already tired.

In general, the following stages are experienced in retirement:

  1. Enchantment
  2. What now?
  3. Reorganization and reorientation
  4. Stability

Recognizing the emotions and challenges inherent in each of these phases will allow us to adapt and face them with greater success, avoiding remaining in absolute disenchantment and thus finding a more stable meaning and a positive retirement.

Jubilada disfruta escuchando música.
Enjoyment transcends issues of age, so getting older doesn’t have to be synonymous with giving up doing the things we enjoy.

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The best tips to face retirement in a positive way

We’ll tell you some of the keys to living a positive retirement below. Not all of them may directly apply to your life, but you can choose the ones you consider most appropriate.

1. Work on your thoughts and beliefs

It’s first necessary to think about what you think is true about this stage of life in order to give it a positive meaning and remove your prejudices. Many people equate leisure and recreation with laziness and only feel valuable when they’re productive and active.

In this sense, it’s key to rethink some ideas, especially in this society in which we’re constantly being told to produce and consume.

2. Find a meaning for your daily life to face retirement right

Whatever activity you choose, it must be interesting and with a purpose. This will allow you to stay motivated.

3. It’s a good time to regain your space and time and to explore and get to know yourself

For many years you may have put certain ideas or plans on hold because you couldn’t find a place for them in your agenda. However, this stage of life is a kick-start to reconnect with yourself at a different pace. It’s time to give way to spontaneity and less rigidity.

4. Look for plans that interest you

Retirement doesn’t have to be synonymous with staying at home all day watching TV. It’s possible to look for activities that give us pleasure, motivate us, and entertain us.

Today, there are many proposals: languages, instruments, art, exercise… They also allow us to interact with new people; in many cases, these people are also in a similar situation.

5. Identify realistic and concrete goals to face retirement in a positive way

Related to the previous point, it’s also about setting specific and achievable objectives in such a way that we avoid falling into overload or giving up.

6. Prepare for retirement

It’s important that, with a certain amount of time, you can start planning for your retirement. In this way, you will save money to live with more peace of mind and allow for certain expenses.

7. Generate and strengthen your own network

Enjoy activities with your family, make plans with your grandchildren (if you have them), and go out with your friends.

8. Think of a pleasant routine with a different speed

A routine organizes us, but it shouldn’t enslave you. Find moments for physical activity, moments of rest, and others of leisure.

Face Retirement the right way with exercise
Exercise during retirement can be a discovery and reunion with your body.

9. Design a new working future

Retiring doesn’t mean that you have to completely abandon your professional activity. You may be able to continue doing some jobs while integrating your leisure time with your work.

At this point in your life, you may have other professional strengths and even other interests that allow you to accept certain types of work and not others. Sometimes, there are people who dedicate themselves to their “failed professions” – that is, to other choices that they would have liked to develop and discarded at a certain point in their adulthood.

10. Join community groups or groups with social purposes

Many times, being able to be part of an NGO or perform community activities also helps us to rediscover our values and feel useful. We often get to do this from another approach.

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Every process is unique

It’s very important to know that not all people reach retirement in the same conditions. Thus, there will be those who are in better health than others or in a better economic position. There are also those who retire early, without seeking it, due to the closure of their company.

In this sense, we must allow ourselves to manage our emotions, since it’s a question of moving from one stage to another. Feeling, thinking, and mourning our role connects us with our new situation and allows us to accept this new phase.

Otherwise, we run the risk of remaining anchored to a past of nostalgia and resignation. It’s important to facilitate spaces that allow us to face this change of stage so that we can rethink ourselves and take on other roles with all the positive aspects retirement offers.

It’s necessary to learn to enjoy what each life phase has to offer in pursuit of a more balanced life.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

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  • Guevara Estacio, María Emilia (2013). Preparación para la jubilación: diseño de un programa de acompañamiento psicológico. Visión Gerencial, (1),103-122.[fecha de Consulta 9 de Junio de 2022]. ISSN: 1317-8822. Disponible en: https://www.redalyc.org/articulo.oa?id=465545895003
  • Cabeza, Manuel Cuenca. (2009). Más allá del trabajo: el ocio de los jubilados. Revista Mal Estar e Subjetividade9(1), 13-42. Recuperado em 09 de junho de 2022, de http://pepsic.bvsalud.org/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1518-61482009000100002&lng=pt&tlng=es.
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This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.