What To Do After Retirement?What To Do After Retirement

5 Creative Ways to Stay Busy

Maybe you spent all those long days at work thinking about how nice it would be when you could head home, kick back in the recliner, and watch TV. Or now you think back on the many mornings you dreamed about how nice it would be to stay in bed all day long, rather than getting up to head to work.

Now that you have the ability to live those dreams all day, every day, you’ll probably find that spending all day in front of the TV or in bed can get pretty darn boring.

When work is exhausting (and balancing work plus family even more so), the default activities we turn to in our free time tend to be focused on relaxing. When work is out of the picture, those relaxing pastimes aren’t necessarily enough to fill up a day.

But, the world is full of possibilities. Explore what’s out there in your community and look for ways to exercise your own creativity. Now you have the chance to do all those interesting things you never had time for (and maybe never knew you wanted to do to begin with).

Here are a few starter ideas to consider. But don’t hesitate to get out there and find your own creative ways to stay busy!

1. Become a dog walker.

Many of the people that still have to go into the office every day have dogs at home that spend the day just aching for attention and activity. If you like dogs, or just like the idea of having an excuse to go for walks outside every day, you can solve their problem (and gain some extra cash on the side).

You can sign up to be a dog walker on rover.com, set your price, and start giving dogs the best part of their day. Or you can take it a step further, and become a dog sitter on DogVacay, which will mean more money and animal company.

2. Start an Etsy shop.

Have any crafty hobbies? If you make furniture, sew pillows, make bead jewelry or do basically anything at all that results in a cute homemade item, you could turn it into a business (one you do on your own time and at your own pace though, of course).

Our recommendation to set up an Etsy shop isn’t really about the money (although it’s nice to have some extra coming in during retirement), it’s about having an incentive to creative something each day. If there are people out there who like what you make and want to buy it, then it makes the time you spend doing that hobby you like anyway that much more worthwhile.

3. Take online courses.

Many online courses are completely free and cover a wide range of interesting subjects. Over at Coursera you can find options ranging from Astronomy: Exploring Time and Space to Jazz Improvisation to Animal Behavior.

Those are just the free options. Many universities also offer some of their courses online as well. Now could be the time to start learning a new language or delve into the classics.

4. Become a tour guide.

Wherever you live, there’s probably a museum somewhere nearby or a company offering tours in your area. Becoming a tour guide gives you a reason to learn all about something new, whether it’s the art on display in the museum you volunteer at or the history of your town.

You’ll get the chance to meet new people, learn lots of interesting information, and do something helpful and fun on a regular basis.

5. Start a meetup.

Meetup.com has made it easier than it’s ever been to meet new people with common interests. If you love classic movies, you can start a group devoted to watching and discussing them. If you’re a fan of taking local hikes, you can find likeminded people to join you.

The theme of your group can be as simple as going to eat at a new place once a month or just trying to bring together people over 60. If your city already has a lot of meetup groups, you may not even need to start your own.

The great thing about all these options (and the many others you may try out) is that you don’t have to feel stuck with any of them. Try dog walking for a month and if you lose interest in it, switch to giving tours of local sites around town. Retirement means you can dabble in this and that and just enjoy the fun of new experiences, or you can discover a new passion that you stick with for the rest of your life.

Kristen Hicks is an Austin-based copywriter and lifelong student with an ongoing curiousity to learn and explore new things. She turns that interest to researching and exploring subjects helpful to seniors and their families for SeniorAdvisor.com.

1 Comment

  1. JOYCE PETRIE March 19, 2015 Reply

    Looking for a singles over 60 get together.

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