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How to Adopt a Holistic and Proactive Approach So You Thrive in Retirement

Retirees have earned every minute of R&R that they want to enjoy. But your favorite lounge chair probably isn't going to fulfill you all by itself for the years, if not decades, of senior living you have in front of you. The happiest retirees we work with at Keen Wealth find that sweet spot between taking it easy and being proactive about how they use their time. Try using some combination of these five ideas to experience more from life in your own retirement.

1. Embrace Lifelong Learning

From online classes to taking a nice long walk to your local library, seniors have so many options to learn more about the world, gain new skills, and keep their minds stimulated. Attending workshops and conferences can expose you to a wide variety of people and ideas. Mentoring the next generation of professionals in your field could give you unique insights into what's coming next. You could even pursue new academic degrees or certifications that could help you start a “second act” in retirement. Your alma mater or the local community college might offer some generous discounts and perks for senior learners.

2. Cultivate Flexibility and Openness to Change

Transitioning away from full-time work is a major life change. But it's just one of many changes you'll have to deal with in retirement. Your daily schedule is going to change. Your relationships with your friends and family will change -- especially if you're married. Your interests might change. And, as you age, your physical capabilities will change as well.

While many of these changes will be challenging, they also provide room for growth and new experiences. Instead of focusing on what you're leaving behind when you stop working, try to be mindful of the exciting opportunity you have to build a new schedule from scratch. You can play more golf, visit your grandchildren more often, or spend more time in your crafting space. You and your spouse might go through a tough adjustment period as you get used to being around each other most of the day. But you'll also have a chance to reconnect and do more of the things you enjoyed doing before you were busy working and raising a family. Learn to embrace change and you’ll come to appreciate the range of possibilities in retirement.

3. Give Back

What do you have to give to society now that you're no longer working? A lot!

Whether you're helping at a local charity or tutoring children, volunteering can provide seniors with a sense of purpose, achievement, and connection. You can repurpose your lifetime of personal and professional skills to help those in need and contribute to causes that are important to you. You could also start your own consulting firm and offer your expertise to startups and entrepreneurs.

If giving is an important value to you and your family, consider starting your own charitable foundation or making a giving pledge. Incorporate these philanthropic goals into your legacy plan and you could create a model for doing good that will make a positive impact for generations to come.

4. Integrate Wellness into Daily Life

Seniors who have never exercised much might worry that if they start now, they're just going to hurt themselves. But you could do a lot more harm if you don't incorporate some physical activity into your retirement routine. Regular exercise can improve your mood, boost your heart health, and help prevent cognitive decline.

New Medicare enrollees should use their “Welcome to Medicare” benefit to establish their baseline health and talk to their doctor about appropriate exercise. Retirees who have kept up a regular fitness schedule might build more time for exercise into their new retirement routines. Also, you may consider mixing things up a bit. Taking a yoga class or joining a gym might give you a new perspective on your health goals and widen your social circle.

Diet is also an important part of a good wellness routine. Now that you're not rushing to and from work every day, spend a little less time in the drive-thru and a little more time in the kitchen. Expanding the variety of foods you eat -- especially a colorful assortment of fruits and vegetables -- will help your body get the nutrition it needs. You could also learn more and improve your skills as you work through that old pile of cookbooks or follow along online with your favorite celebrity chefs.

5. Feel Confident About Your Finances

A good financial plan is more than just your numbers – it’s a blueprint for safety and security that should help you feel more confident about how and why you’re spending your money. Having that confidence can break down so many of the mental barriers that keep seniors from living a full life in retirement. With the support of a comprehensive financial plan, springing for a few bucket list vacations won’t feel quite so nerve-wracking. You’ll also feel freer to follow retirement where it leads: to new experiences, new opportunities, new challenges, new people, and new adventures.

Make an appointment to visit Keen Wealth, and let’s start working on a plan that could help you get more from your money in 2024.  

About Bill

Bill Keen is a financial advisor with nearly 30 years of industry experience. As the founder and CEO of Keen Wealth Advisors, a registered investment advisory firm, he focuses on providing personalized retirement planning designed to help people thrive before and during their retirement years. With a passion for educating others, Bill regularly blogs about retirement planning, hosts the podcast Keen on Retirement, and has contributed to Forbes, U.S. News and World Report, Reuters, Wall Street Journal’s Market Watch, Yahoo Finance, and other publications. Based in Overland Park, Kansas, Bill and his team work with clients throughout the greater Kansas City area and across the nation. To learn more, connect with him on LinkedIn or visit www.keenwealthadvisors.com.

KWMG, LLC’s dba Keen Wealth Advisors (“company”) is an SEC Registered Investment Advisor located in Overland Park, KS. The company and its representatives may only conduct business in those states where registered or where excluded/exempt or from licensure. For registration information please contact the SEC or the state securities regulators for the states where the company is notice filed. A copy of the company ADV is available upon request. Advisory services are only offered to clients or prospective clients where the company and its representatives are properly licensed or exempt from licensure. No advice may be rendered by the company unless a client service agreement is in place. This information is not intended to be investment advice or construed as a recommendation or endorsement of any particular investment or investment strategy and is for illustrative purposes only. Clients and prospective clients must consider all relevant risk factors involved with each strategy, including costs or fees, and their own personal financial situations before trading.

The views outlined in the book, Keen on Retirement Engineering the Second Half of Your Life, are those of the author and should not be construed as individualized or personalized investment advice. Any economic and/or performance information cited is historical and not indicative of future results. Economic forecasts set forth may not develop as predicted.

The Amazon Best Seller ranking listed on marketing materials is specifically referring to Best Seller rankings for the Kindle Top 100 Paid Lists under the subcategories of: Budgeting and Financial Risk Management, based on data as of September 5, 2019 and the second edition under Financial Risk Management on October 26, 2022. Amazon rankings although relevant on how a product is selling overall doesn’t necessarily indicate how well an item is selling among other similar items or similar item categories. Amazon may choose the most popular categories or subcategories within which an item has a high ranking to determine its best seller rankings. These rankings are updated hourly and as a result, should be expected to fluctuate as such. Keen Wealth Advisors and Amazon are not affiliated entities. 

The Steve Sanduski Advisor Network, Belay Advisor, LLC and other third-party contributors to our blogs and podcasts are not affiliated with Keen Wealth Advisors.

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