There is a mental picture of retirement that comes to mind from the media representations of someone in a deck chair on a beautifully manicured beach with a Corona in their hand and the breeze in their hair. (Oh yes, I forgot the handsome guy or beautiful gal in the other chair)
For most of us, that is not reality. We are healthier now and there is no ‘retirement’ age so some choose to work beyond the old barrier of ‘65’ but likely do so for different reasons. Some financially cannot stop working while others need to feel they are busy and contributing to society or mentoring others with their skills and experience.
The financial community would have us believe that money is the only challenge we face in retirement. It is much more than that! For starters, if you and your spouse retire at the same time you are together 2500 more hours each year. That is a whole new relationship! Many will have 20 – 25 years of retirement. That is a whole new career! There is also the mental challenge of retirement, wrapping your mind around the change.
I recently retired from my four day a week job that I had for seven years. Although I am an Introvert, I enjoyed the routine of seeing my work family and interacting with the different personalities. While it was my choice and the right choice, I was not prepared for the mental aspect of the move. My sleep pattern is now erratic, and my waking thoughts are not focused. Even though I have projects I am working on I feel somewhat adrift and rudderless. Change has always been a challenge for my personality type. I need to reinforce the positive reasons I chose the change to accept and champion my new path. The knowledge of my personality will make this transition smoother although the path may not always be easy to follow.
I would encourage anyone contemplating retirement to explore their personality type. Understanding your stressors and remedies is very helpful in navigating the new terrain and enjoying the journey ahead.