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How To Discover Your Passions and Hobbies in Retirement

senior hiking in the woods

For most, retirement is something to look forward to. A time when you have more freedom to do whatever you want. Of course, no matter how you feel about going to work, saying goodbye to something you’ve spent a big part of your adult life doing can be a little scary. But one of the best ways to cope is to explore your hobbies in retirement.

Pursuing a new interest — from learning how to play an instrument, to reading a series of mystery novels, to taking a class at a local college — can not only lead you to finding your purpose after retirement but it can also help keep your mind sharp.

This blog post will help you create goals for the future that’ll ensure your transition into retirement is as seamless and enjoyable as possible. We’ll offer questions to help you define your hobbies in retirement and have some suggestions for you to consider.

How to Find Purpose in Retirement

When you think about your career, what did you enjoy about it? Was it using your creativity and knowledge to solve a problem, being part of a team or just the daily interaction with others? Figuring out what you value most about work is a good indicator of what’s important to you. Here are some questions to help you uncover new opportunities and interests:

  • What type of activities did you enjoy as a kid?
  • Do you like doing something on your own or as part of a group?
  • Do you enjoy being indoors or outdoors?
  • If you were in a bookstore, what sections would you gravitate toward? Sports? Art? Nature? Photography? Technology? History?
  • Is there an issue or cause that matters to you?
  • Do you have a natural skill or talent?
  • Is there a skill/talent you admire in others and wish you had?
  • Do your friends or loved ones have hobbies that interest you? If so, what are they?
  • What is something you’d like to know how to do better?
  • What do you do that makes you feel happy?

Variety Is the Spice of Retirement

Another step toward finding your purpose after retirement is trying new things. Even if it’s something you hadn’t considered before. Exploring your options can lead you to places you might not have ever imagined. Some suggestions include:

  • Black and white: Writing gives you an opportunity to explore ideas, express yourself and play with words. You could write down family stories. Maybe try your hand at a novel. Or you could write a birthday poem for a friend.
  • Family roots: You can start by exploring your family history on a genealogy website. Next, you could take it a little further by traveling to the towns, states — even countries — where your ancestors lived.
  • Take a hike (or walk): Walking is a low-impact, moderate-intensity activity that can be enjoyed alone or with friends, on city streets or woodland trails.
  • Birds of feather: Start by getting to know the birds in your area. You could even set up a bird feeder and see what types of birds you attract. Or there are local birding groups where you could enjoy the sights and sounds of nature with others.
  • Get dirty: Whether you garden in containers on your patio or a community garden, playing in the dirt can benefit your mental and physical health.
  • Be well: Yoga, tai chi and other gentle movement practices offer physical benefits, such as improved balance, flexibility and strength. They can also help reduce stress, anxiety and depression. Plus, taking a class is a great way to meet new friends.
  • Artistic expression: Tap into your creative side through painting, drawing, sewing, quilting, crocheting, knitting or embroidery. Taking a class is a great way to get started and to meet new people.
  • What’s cooking?: If you like tasting new things, explore your culinary skills. You could even invite the grandkids over and make a day of it. One of the best parts is, you get to enjoy the results.
  • Get moving: Physical activity is increasingly important as you age, so finding fun and creative ways to stay active may boost your happiness and your health. If taking an exercise class isn’t your thing, consider activities like golf, pickleball, bocce, bowling, croquet or even dancing.

Enjoy a More Purpose-Full Life at Opus Newton

Finding purpose in retirement is easier when you have neighbors and friends who already enjoy a purposeful life. At Opus, every resident will commit to volunteering some of their time to help make our community a better and stronger place: We call it Opus Time. It’s a great step towards finding purpose after retirement and can lead you to a variety of other interests. To learn more about our new community — Opus Newton — contact us here.