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Finding Purpose and Community After Retirement

Four Secrets

written by Andrea Brandt, PHD, MFT November 26, 2019
Finding Purpose and Community After Retirement

No matter how much you look forward to retirement, you may wake up the morning after your last day at work and feel sadness or anxiety. For decades, your days and weeks were structured. You knew what you had to do, where you had to be, what time you had to be there, and who you’d see when you arrived. Now you’re without that structure and community. Sometimes we don’t know what we’re going to miss until it’s gone, and structure and community are things you may be surprised to miss. Whether you recently retired or are thinking about your future retirement, it’s a good idea to formulate a plan for the day after your day-job ends.

Expectations and Retirement

The media invite us to fantasize about retirement as a life of leisure. Retirement means golfing, shuffleboard, and cruises, and a life where we no longer have to work toward something, exert effort, or grow. Golf and cruises can be fun (and you should partake as much as you want and can afford if they’re things you enjoy), but a life of leisure isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. You’ve become the person you are today—wise, interesting, and interested—because of your decades of hard work. You don’t have to let your mind turn to mush just because advertisements tell you to.

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