Before Retirement, Anxiety and Depression

Before Retirement, Anxiety and Depression often hit like a brick wall. It doesn't matter whether we choose retirement (voluntary), or if our exit is involuntary (layoffs, downsizing, disability)... this strange emotion pops it's ugly head.

Anxiety bites many of us before we even retire! Why is that?

We've waited for years to finally find our blissful retirement years... and then anxiety jumps out to ambush us!


We should be happily stepping into a new challenge and phase of life -- a time of our own, and yet -- we are afraid.

Before you retire, you have many options you might want to consider. Simply considering retirement issues might take the anxiety to a lesser level if you being to understand your options... instead of letting them roll around in you mind. Small issues become big issues.  Right?

Your retirement decision can bring on anxiety and many sleepless nights... help yourself and register for my workshops!

But you don't have to just sit there, couch-potato-like, there is much you can do to move forward in life. My book, Retirement Anxiety, Stress & Depression: Be Gone!, shares many retiree stories written by those who have " been there and done that" before you.

How do you walk out that Retirement Door?

Now, Tell me -- HOW does a person make the mental adjustment to "walk out the door" and retire? I was employed for 36 years with the same employer. I was eligible to retire for four years... and yet, I continued to work. WHY?

Even funnier, even though I worried about my own anxiety and depression (assuming it happened)... this was my job! I could help others retire and yet -- I can't retire myself worry!

I have done pre-retirement planning workshops for 20 years now, and now it's ME who can't quite retire?  AND -- if someone who KNOWS retirement, has thought about it for years (not just in terms of freedom) and I still had fears, just know - IT'S NOT JUST YOU!

I was consumed with the dream of my retirement. I have many hobbies, love working on my websites, and yet... scared to walk away from work, like so many of you with anxiety before retirement.

Sound familiar?

Anxiety and worry are all about future events -- many of which never ever happen.  All that anxiety simply makes you mentally or physically ill!  What a waste of your precious time and energy! 

Start Thinking.... Stop Worrying!

A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose, by Eckert Tolle

This book from Amazon could greatly help you... A New Earth has really helped me to find peace... Retirement Peace! I kid you not... I love this book! It's not about retirement, it's about serenity and peace in life. Contentment in life. 

My copy is well used, highlighted the important parts, and just very well read. Plus, if you did really want to understand how to find peace in your life, there are weekly lessons on Oprah.com on this book. Folks worldwide tuned in to ask questions on the books concepts... to find their own peace in life. It was a huge online workshop in 2008 and the author will explain part you didn't quite get.

For a few dollars, I really truly think you can find peace and contentment in your own retirement, like I did! 

What will you do, all day, every day?

 You worked at least eight hours a day, plus your commute, what will you DO   after you retire?

You aren't retired yet -- so consider that question deeply.  

If you have a To Do List or many hobbies and interests, no problem. But if you retire and fall off the retirement cliff -- asking Who Am I and What Do I DO Every Day?  BIG problem.

Will you work after retirement?

Many boomers will choose to work part-time... just getting out of the house, gaining some income, keeping busy during the retirement transition phase, and maybe even a bit of simple socializing!  

Might your employer allow a phased retirement? You work less hours while they get to keep a seasoned employee working for them? You might also be a consultant in your same field.

Personally, I grab my laptop, and start working online! It's a perfect "job" for me!

How will you Keep Busy?

Check out my free email workshop on Retirement Ideas for Keeping Yourself Busy after you retire.

Register for the workshop -- get emails with great ideas on what you might do in your retirement. Some you know but don't think about (your mind is too busy worrying),  others will be a pleasant surprise!

You might also consider volunteering, taking classes and lots more.  There is so much to do in retirement... if you care to keep busy and find purpose in life. 

Problem is -- we get wrapped up in our anxiety (leading to even bigger depression). Don't Do That! 

Get out of your home and do something -- really anything! 

Now,  how do you get past the negative self-talk and anxiety associated with the decision of retirement?

You simply must educate yourself!  
Knowledge is Super Power...

  • Know your options
  • Open your eyes, you are a new person
  • Realize all the possibilities that surround you
  • Consider your new lifestyle
  • Decide who the NEW YOU will be!

While we are excited about the possibilities and freedom of retirement -- why do we lie awake worrying about whether we are making the right decision? AND, if you were anxious during the retirement decision, imagine if you can't get past it in retirement.

Imagine if you decide, after retirement, that you did the wrong thing and you become depressed in retirement? You didn't do the wrong thing. You will retire at some point, we all do... change your mindset and move into your new life!

Look at retirement as a change in pace, a new challenge in life, new life options... don't allow yourself to fall into that retirement depression rut!

You'll KNOW when it's right...

Finally, before my own retirement, many retirees gave me the same advice, over and over.  Oddly enough, they all use the exact same words. It's their mantra.. only they don't realize they ALL say it. What is IT?

"You'll know when it's right... "

Oh my, such simple advice... and I do believe they are right!

It happened to me. I continued to work, unsure of when I'd feel good about the retirement decision. Suddenly, out of the blue, I gave my two week notice. I had always imagined giving one-month notice... but when I finally decided, I was out the door much sooner!

No need to wait until the retirement angel taps me on the shoulder and whispers into my ear: 

"Pssssst! It's time, you can retire, it's the right time...."

It came suddenly, I knew in my heart it was the right time to walk away and start my new life... and I did it!

I retired!

If you'd like to read my own retirement story, read on here!

I'd love to hear from you... how did YOU make the decision to "walk out the door" and retire?

 Have Fun!


Please Share Your Own Story on Anxiety Before Retirement


Your comments will help others to think about retirement, before leaping into retirement. Please share what happened to you so that you can be helped and your story helps others!


  • Do you feel anxiety before retirement?
  • What are your symptoms?
  • What makes you anxious? Anything specific?
  • Do you have a retirement date yet?
  • Will you retire voluntarily? Because of a disability, or employer forcing you out (layoff, downsizing, etc)?
  • Are you looking forward to retirement? Is it a difficult decision?

    Read about what other Visitors have to Say...

    Click below to see contributions from other visitors on this topic:

    Burned out and anxious: 3 years to retirement 
    So glad I stumbled on this website. I've been a happy, enthusiastic person for most of my life but now, at 61, I feel burned out on my job but that I need …

    Retirement: Ask for help 
    I am a 61 year old male with a well-paid executive job in the federal government. House is paid for, kids are educated and I was offered a generous redundancy …

    Am I Ready To Retire? 
    Likes several of the stories I have read, I have worked in education for 37 years and am at a stage and age when retirement makes sense. I love most …

    Waiting for the other shoe to drop... 
    I work for the federal government and have done so for 26 years. I truly enjoyed my job in health care until about 3 years ago. I just reached full …

    I Don't Know HOW To Retire 
    I am still in full time work, at nearly 65, commuting 4 hours a day. I am incredibly tired and think that I should retire but what do I do then? I …

    Now That It's Here... I'm Angry! 
    Where I work, people normally retire after 30 years of service. I have 27 years in and am feeling the Big Squeeze. It makes me feel bad; stressed, …

    Anxious 
    I have made everyone sick to death listening to me about my concerns about retiring...I am 65..there I said it...so all decisions rest on me... I have …

    Just want to make a decision... take the big leap to retirement? 
    I'm turning 60 next month and I've been an elementary teacher for 22 years (after working in another career for 20 years). Inherited enough from my …

    Just started thinking about retirement 
    Just started really thinking about retirement. Very frightened I will become invisible. I am a full time visual arts teacher in a high risk Title …

    About to retire 
    I am 64 years old and do not have to retire but feel that it is time. New management lacks leadership skills and feels threatened by me. It's time …

    Anxiety before retirement 
    I have seen that there are only a few posts about anxiety before retirement. I have another one.. I am 62, going to be 63 in March. I work for a municipality …

    Pre Retirement Worries... 
    I am 60 years old and have been working since im 15. I raised 2 great kids and have 6 grandchildren now. I can retire in 18 months. the thought of it …

    I am so nervous about retiring 
    My husband (59) and myself (55) plan to retire to Naples, florida next year where we have owned a condo for 15 years so we know the community. However, …

    Click here to write your own.