You’ve worked hard all your life and retirement is your reward.

Suddenly, you have all this time on your hands and a whole new routine to get used to – are you ready for the changes?

This is your chance to do all those things you’ve been putting off or missed out on during your career. It can be the most worthwhile period of your life if you do it right. Here are 6 ideas to get you started:

1. Prepare for retirement. Talk about your retirement with the people around you – they may have some interesting suggestions that you haven’t considered. These conversations also prepare your family for the next step in your life. Let them know that you need time for yourself and your significant other. This is a new phase of your relationship as well so, the more you communicate, the smoother it will go.
2. Spend more time with family. In particular, get to know the younger kids. They grow up so fast and you’ve probably not been around as much you wanted to, so make time for them. It will make you feel younger, too. And, there are so many things to do in Manchester that will create wonderful memories for all of you – even if the weather doesn’t co-operate!
3. Exercise your brain. Your grey matter is a muscle and the more you work it, the stronger it will be, especially if you flex parts of it you’ve left untouched. For example, learning a new language is the best way to stimulate fresh neural pathways and you could combine this with a trip abroad to practice. Also consider improving your technological skills. If you’ve not kept current on computer and device technology, now’s the time to remedy that.
4. Work on the house. Build some more value into your property with home improvements. These kinds of projects occupy you with practical tasks, creative work and imaginative problem-solving. If your budget doesn’t include such ventures, consider an equity release scheme to free up some cash – here is a calculator to help you work out how much you would have available.
5. Make new friends and stay in touch with old ones. Get out into the world. Join social or hobby groups, or even better, volunteer at a favourite charity. Keep your social circle active because you’re likely to lose work friends you may have depended upon in the past.
6. Become more self-sufficient. If you’ve divided labour at home into specific tasks, why not learn how to take care of yourself and the house more fully. For example, you could learn to cook, do basic plumbing or tackle the garden and get mucky. Swap jobs for a while. This will keep the relationship fresh and entertaining.

Retirement can be the most fulfilling portion of your life, so take it seriously. Get into shape by exercising, eating healthy and not vegetating in front of the telly. These days, 60 is the new 40 and we might as well enjoy ourselves as long as we can.


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