Everybody dreams of the ways they will spend their retirement. Usually, it is in the form of a favorite hobby they hope to dedicate more time to, spend more time with the grandkids, or to do a lot more traveling. The only problem is that as we get older there are inevitably some surprises that pop up. It could be an illness, injury, or some form of mental decline that happens which prevents us from fully enjoying retirement.
This is why it’s really important to make sure that you are just saving up a retirement fund to get ready for retirement, but to also take care of a lot of other factors to make sure you can properly enjoy things. You’ll need to be proactive about your health and to set up your home to adjust to your needs as you age. In this article, we will go over several of the things that you need to do to get the most out of your retirement.
1 – Modify your home
One of the biggest barriers to enjoying retirement is a lack of mobility. Getting around can be difficult and this makes living independently a challenge. To really get the most out of retirement, it is important to be able to take care of the basics yourself at home. This means that you have to modify your house to be able to be more mobile.
An example is that you can get yourself a hospital style bed. The best adjustable beds will allow you to get a good night sleep and to keep you from experiencing a lot of issues that come from a normal mattress. For instance, edema is a problem that affects many older people and can make it difficult to get out of bed in the morning. With an adjustable bed, you can keep your feet up with the press of a button to avoid edema.
The bathroom is a big area of concern. It’s wet and slippery and is a leading cause of falls that end up limiting seniors’ ability to live independently. It is a good idea to change the traditional bathtub for one in which there is a door and it can be stepped into inside without needing to step over the sides. Look for ones that have a set built in so you can sit comfortably while washing up.
Using the toilet is also a cause for falls since it requires the ability to be able to twist and reach. Using a bidet seat attachment for the elderly is a great way to avoid that since it uses a jet of water to clean up.
Since strength is often an issue, look for ways to automate things around the house so you don’t have to exert yourself. A stair seat will allow you to access the upper floors of a house without needing to risk a fall by walking up. An automatic garage door opener is also a way to avoid having to bend and lift.
2 – Use preventative care
There are going to be aches and pains when you get older. Your vision and hearing will also be lacking compared to how they used to work. It’s important to make sure that you are getting checked out for vision and hearing frequently. This way you can be sure that you have the best prescription for glasses and aren’t struggling to read or see when driving. Having the wrong prescription means that your vision will actually get worse. It’s best to take care of it before it does.
The same goes for your hearing. Your quality of life is seriously impacted by not hearing well. You should be getting checked out so you can get hearing aids if there is a need. Since many are very discreet and can even be controlled by your smartphone, it is worth having them to be able to get the most out of your life.
3 – Have a purpose
Many people often look forward to retirement to stop working. The reality is that having a job, even a simple one, will give you a purpose in life and actually help you enjoy your retirement more. It’s usually the case that people looking to quit working are more likely trying to drop out of the rat race.
By avoiding long commutes, office politics, and working too many hours, you can have a job that you enjoy doing and gives you a purpose in life. It’s good to have a job in which you are important and you can contribute.
Even a volunteer job is something that will give you some purpose in life. Perhaps even more than if you were to simply get a part time job somewhere. You can easily find organizations that are dedicated to causes that you believe in. Working for one will help you feel like you are leaving the world a better place.
4 – Get plenty of exercise
Staying active is essential to aging gracefully. Many illnesses and aches and pains can be reduced or even eliminated when you are getting enough exercise. Living a sedentary lifestyle is unhealthy for any age but it is particularly problematic when you are a senior citizen.
Come up with an exercise routine and stick with it. Yoga is a fantastic way to stay in shape as it has a lot of other benefits besides just getting the blood flowing. It can also lead to an increase in flexibility so you are less likely to fall and get injured. Having core strength is important as is an improved sense of balance that comes with doing yoga.
Going for walks, gardening, and running errands by bicycle are also great ways to make sure that you are getting enough exercise and will keep you healthier as a result.
It isn’t a given that we will get to retirement in the condition we need to be in to fully enjoy it. By thinking ahead and putting stuff in place then you are more likely to get the most out of it.