27 Ways to Stay Busy & Bypass the “Retirement Blues”

Golfer

Lots of people worry about how they will stay busy during retirement. If you can relate, check out this list of 27 ideas and keep those retirement blues at bay.

Find a Hobby

Even though it’s cliché and you’ve heard it a thousand times before, learning a new hobby may be one of the best ways to stay busy during retirement. Hell, why limit yourself to one? Go ahead and learn how to make cheese, play the saxophone, and collect fine cigars to smoke every evening.

Establish a Routine

The last thing you want is an aimless day that seems to never end. Establishing a routine puts purpose in your day. It also helps you set boundaries with your kids who want to drop off their kids during your poker night with the fellas. “Sorry, Lisa. Tuesday night is poker night.”

Get a Pet

Whether it’s a dog, a cat, or a water monitor (look it up), getting a pet feels like the natural next step after retirement. Just make sure you have a good person in mind for pet-sitting, and get ready to buy that animal all the sweaters.

Join a Club

There’s a club for everything these days—hiking, poker, food, motorcycles, you name it. It’s the place where you can reignite old passions and interests while also meeting like-minded people. What’s not to like?

Travel

Did this one even need to be shared? Of course, you want to travel. Just remember to take pictures and obnoxiously post them all over Facebook to make your kids jealous and think to themselves, “Who knew they could have so much fun without me?”

Go to Concerts

There’s nothing like going to a live show where half of the original members have passed on and are now replaced by more talented subs who have forgettable names and good heads of hair. Rock on.

Give Money to a Great Cause

Don’t go giving away your hard-earned money to any old cause, but when you find the one that plucks at your dusty heartstrings, it’s time to fork it over. But really, though, generosity goes a long way in growing your happiness and the happiness of others!

Volunteer Based on Your Expertise

9 times out of 10, you’ve got a bunch of high-schoolers running around picking up trash to make up their “volunteer hours” for school credit. Lead by example and volunteer in meaningful ways that actually make a difference—like helping your neighbor fix their gutter, teaching a kid to read, or raising canned foods for a local food pantry.

Part-time Job

Were you used to working 60-70-hour weeks (you lunatic)? A part-time job will do you good. Make it a fun one, though, like leading docent tours at a museum, selling something you’re passionate about, or consulting at your former place of business. 

Work Out or Play a Sport

Don’t be that guy who can’t stand up without groaning and cursing under his breath. Go on walks in the sunshine, water ski, take up pickleball, or go line-dancing so you can keep saying you’ve “still got it.”

Write Down Special Memories

This one seems sentimental, but really, it’s a way to brag to your kids about all of the awesome stuff you’ve done.

Offer to Babysit the Grandkids

When the time is right, babysitting the grandkids can be a blast. Especially when you get to feed them all the sugar they want and send them home to their parents with a sly smile. All while wearing a shirt that says, “World’s Best Grandpa.”

Learn About Something New

Maybe you loved Science but never really got into history. Visit a museum, watch a documentary, or read a book (with pictures, of course), and learn about World War II or JFK’s assassination…just don’t get sucked into a conspiracy theory. Or at least no more than three…

Move to a More Ideal Location or Buy a Vacation Home

“Snowbirds,” Boston locals who go North when it’s too hot, and everyone in between…what if you could find the ideal place to live year-round? Maybe now’s the time to do it or at least find a vacation home for the less-than-ideal seasons where you live.

Downsize & Simplify

We’re not saying you should go sell all of your belongings and sleep on a mattress on the floor with bare walls and no decorations. But you’ve probably accumulated a lot of stuff over the years (*ahem, how many storage spaces do you rent out?). Don’t leave all kinds of crap for your kids to go through after you’re gone. Plus, that giant gap in your garage looks boat-sized…

Spend Time Outside

The quintessential “sitting on your back porch drinking coffee and thinking about how happy you are” setting doesn’t work if you don’t have a back porch. But you get the idea. If you live in the city, take one from Kramer’s book…

Dress How You’ve Always Wanted to Dress

Gaudy unnecessary ties? Check.

Brightly colored button-downs? Check.

Unnecessary Bluetooth earpiece. Check.

Read More

Or do something to keep your mind sharp like playing the crossword every day.

Try Something that Challenges or Scares You

When was the last time you did something challenging or tried something new? Part of having fun is keeping an open mind and making sure you don’t get stuck in your ways.

Mentor or Coach Someone

Sometimes you have wisdom to impart…and games to throw your hat down on the ground and stomp on in reaction to a ref’s bad call.

Splurge and Buy Something Fun

Maybe it’s time to buy a new car, a boat, or a steak sandwich and a steak sandwich. Especially if you can charge it to the Underhills.

Evaluate Your Regrets & Do Something About Them

Retirement is a good time to sit back and think about your life. Even if you decide that you wouldn’t change a thing.

Become a Local Guide

You know how when you’re on Google and you read that one-star review of a restaurant you want to try, but then you read a 5-star review from a local guide and you try it anyway (and it’s awesome). That local guide could be you. Or, you could lead a local ghost tour or something.

Get the Necessary Subscriptions

Time is money. In your golden years, why insist on doing everything the old-fashioned way when there’s a subscription for that?

Remember to Rest & Enjoy

With all of this advice in mind, remember to take it easy and just rest some days. This is your retirement after all.

Prioritize Family & Friends

Above all else, stay connected with the people who matter most to you: your friends and family.

Play PokerCows

If you’re looking for a way to stay connected with your kids who moved away or your long-distance friends, check out PokerCows. It’s an online poker platform meant to be played with friends. With live video, tons of poker variations, and private tables, it’s the perfect poker platform for retirement.

Try it out for free.

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