Retirement is theoretically a relaxing time designed to reward years of hard work, but it can be anything but calming for retirees used to living with the routines and financial security of full time employment. It is a major life change, and retirees face the pressure of making a series of major financial and lifestyle decisions such as selling the home to downsize, moving house, sorting possessions, revising living expenses and budgets, re-negotiating relationships and perhaps relocating to a new area at the same time.

Such changes can be liberating and life-enhancing, but this transitional period followed by extended leisure time can be more stressful than expected. Experts offer constructive suggestions for managing this adjustment, and settling into a new lifestyle in retirement while maintaining physical, mental and emotional well-being.

“There’s a lot of stress in retirement, although it’s a different type of stress,” says Cynthia Ackrill, president of Wellspark, an organization for leadership development and energy management. “If you tend to be a purposeful person who has always lived with structure, it is extremely stressful to live in such a different way,” according to an article published on the Huffington Post: Post 50 website.

In order to combat potential restlessness, Ackrill recommends that seniors keep themselves “physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually active.”
"One of the greatest drivers for human spirit is purpose," Ackrill says. "[Seniors] need something purposeful to do."

Lauren Moulton-Beaudry, the director of ethics and education for Front Porch, a not-for-profit provider of retirement communities in Southern California, agreed. She recently compiled a list of 10 tips for well-being, which include advice on how to de-stress and live more mindfully.

"What I see is that when people [previously being] fulfilled by a purpose retire ... they don’t know what to do [with themselves]," Moulton-Beaudry said.
While Moulton-Beaudry designed her list of tips for de-stressing and living more purposefully with seniors in mind, she said they are applicable to every age.

These include finding activities, hobbies and causes you are passionate about; varying routines; keeping up with current affairs; reading and writing; socialising; continuing education and developing your mind; volunteering and embracing your sprituality.

View the slideshow and read more on the Post 50 website.