Nothing worse than retirement!

by Randy Jackson

I worked in MI Dept of Corrections for about 28 years, following my Dad, uncles, cousins, etc. I was a very secure job and I enjoyed it. As everyone else, I looked forward to retirement.

Retired since 11/2003, and still lost. No regimentation, schedules, rules... I miss everything.

From day one everyone knew what was expected of them... make no friends, sit back against the wall, face the door on the ready, etc.

Retirement day came and I was told to have fun and enjoy yourself. With who? It's difficult to cope with business as usual... and I don't care about much at all. I acquired no friends, no activities, or real hobbies while working. O/T was my activity.

Now what?

Comments for Nothing worse than retirement!

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by: Ron (IL)

I agree with a previous post- volunteer! Everyone can do something to improve the lives of others. Find your calling (try several)- you will regain a sense of purpose and social connections.

Learn to Soothe Yourself
by: Linda/Nevada

To So Lonely in VA

I am no stranger to loneliness. In this whole wide world, I only have two people who care about me. I see my daughter only twice a year and I haven't seen my sister in years. It is very hard for me to make friends because I am judgmental, distrustful, and aloof. I go for days and weeks without talking to anyone even though I am surrounded by people my age in my apartment complex.

I think it is important for people in my situation to learn how to soothe yourself as if you are a child who needs a loving presence in their life.

I find that doing these things bring comfort to me:

Listen to music - either soft and soothing or fast and lively

Cook or bake one of my favorite recipes

Journal my thoughts using whatever words come to mind even it means telling God I'm angry at Him

Last but not least, read - I couldn't live without my books

I read an article in a magazine, a long time ago. that most of us come into the world alone and most of us will leave this world alone so being alone should not be a state of mind that is negative or loathing.

You should always be your best friend.

So lonely I could scream, sometimes do!
by: Maria VA

I know you're probably looking for positivity here, but I feel exactly the same as you do. I lost a son, my husband, anyone I loved is gone and all of the family I have left is in Scotland.

I am so lonely I could scream, and sometimes I do! I evev considered joining one of those senior dating sites but chickened out.

Anyone who has any suggestions for us I will gladly take note. So Lonely in VA......

wendy Join the Retirement Community (right column) and find new friends to chat with... it will help!

Oh fiddle sticks
by: Patricia Murphy

Nothing worse than retirement? Ha!

I may be as poor as the proverbial church mouse, but I'm having a blast.

All the time in the world to read as much as I want to. Are you close to a library? Join it, learn to check out books, put books on hold so you can pick them up when they come in.

You have a computer? I'm thinking obviously you do, you're on this site. If not, get one. The WHOLE WORLD is out there, right at your fingertips. You can browse the Louvre - go where ever you like.

Go volunteer someplace. I'm betting your local newspaper has a listing of places in need of volunteers - or type in Places To Volunteer In..............your city, state.

Go be useful, helpful. Take up walking, get a pet that needs to go walking. I could type on here forever with ideas.

Don't just sit and feel sorry for yourself.

Life is wonderful! Fill it up with joy.

Prof. Durgesh Kumar
by: Sherry/Wilmington, NC USA

Thank you very much for your comment, Prof. Kumar, it is right on!!

I love your comment and I love elephants!!

There are 3 Elephant Sanctuaries in USA. I am a member of one. this one is in Tennessee. Check it out!!

Elephants make me happy!!

Are you kidding me???
by: Sherry/Wilmington, NC

There is lots to do in retirement. I have been reired now for 1 year.

Go to the Senior Center in your community. They have lots to do and you can plan a trip there with other seniors. You can join an exercising class, I did. I feel better and have made new friends!!!

There are Seniors who need help with lots of things. It will make you feel good about yourself!!!

I go to church every Sunday morning and have church friends that I only see at church. It is a regular thing and enjoyable. I go out to breakfast after church with other friends.

Just smile alot and talk to people you will make friends. Walk around your neighborhood everyday and talk to your neighbors when you see them outside!! Fresh air and sun on your face makes you feel good!!

Offer to help your neighbors with their pets!!

When people see you on a regular basis they will talk to you.

Life is too short
by: Charmaine

Retirement should be the best time of your life and life is too short to be spending it bored. Why not try volunteering in your community. I am sure that you can find lots of opportunities in you community if you look. You would not only be contributing, but you give your self the opportunity to make new friends.

Enjoying retirement at last.
by: patrick slattery

hi, 2003 is a long time ago, and your still lost, i retired in 2012, was lost until 2016, then realised there was no going back. I started to enjoy the time i have now, going for a cycle, ect.

i retired at 61, and if i had my time over again, id wait until the official retirement age of 66. everyone is different, and some love retirement, my friends who retired with me ,loved it straight away. it took me 3/4 years to settle.

hope you do settle into retirement, as you are only on the planet once. but it does take getting used to doing things at a slower pace, after working all your life, it even took the wife time to get used to me being around so much, after a stormy start.

ow were like 2 peas in a pod. (i think)

by: Loyce

We have choices: Stew and stagnate or try to move forward and onward by choosing to volunteer and/or grouping with others to meet others as we are all transitioning.

Many have been comfortable in their patterns which must now be shifted and changed and this is uncomfortable and painful and to be expected as growing "pains" come with the territory.

Can't "move on" because of lack of mobility?

Dig into the internet and perhaps--if you're willing--invite vibrant peeps to your home which should be a comforting sanctuary--in the perfect world.

Make yourself a business
by: Sandy

Randy - 14 years is a long time to feel like you do. Perhaps you can think of yourself as a business - how would you grow that business and what would the results of that business be? So basically, what are your goals?

Frankly, you will need to organize yourself into living. You can start with small goals, like getting out 1 hour per day, or volunteering 2 hours per week. But because that really won't fill the void it seems like you are experiencing, just keep creating more until you have a full list of how you want your life to look.

When 2031 rolls around (14 years from now) - you can look back and say that the last 14 years were your years of adventure and joy.

And please take all the advice everyone is giving you and do what feels right for you. But doing nothing will give you the same results.

I wish you well.....

by: Anonymous

Why don't you find a volunteer job helping others?
If you are working with other volunteers you should be able to make friends.

Much Good in Retirement
by: Retd. Prof. Durgesh Kumar Srivastava, C3, Janakpurik New Delhi-110058, IndiaYour Name/Location

Esteemed Randy,

Can you please give me 5 minutes to read this comment and 2 hours every Sat - Sun for three weeks to implement I ?

Take a big bag and put into it the things that I mention below ... 2 newspapers and 1 magazine of the latest date available; some balloons; some sweet candies and chocolate bars; a large floor mat; a portable transistor radio, and a large bottle of clean drinking water, a small packet of bird feed seeds and a shallow pail to keep water.

Now go to a nearby children's park and spread the floor mat on the grassy lawn in a peaceful corner and sit down comfortably. Put the shallow pail, fill it with water and spread the bird feed seeds on a newspaper near the water. Inflate a few balloons and keep these near you. Play the radio very softly. Now read your magazine comfortably without trying to attract attention. Gradually, birds would start coming to you for seed and water. Soon kids would start coming to you for balloons. Give them balloons and candies with their parents permission. Slowly you woul dhave many parents talking to you. Let them sit on the floor mat and read your newspapers and magazines. Gradually they would start talking to you. New friendships will grow in a few weeks.

Your retirement days will no longer be boring

Best Wishes. DKS, 24 Mar 17

It Takes Time and Creativity
by: Linda/Nevada

Randy, I get where you are coming from. I, too, did not develop friendships or hobbies before I retired. I had a very stressful accounting job that required a lot of overtime. I would go home from work too tired and stressed to think about anything other than dinner and a television show.

Now that I am retired, I realize that I let my job take over too much of my life which caused me to ignore things like hobbies and personal interests. I am going on my third year of retirement and I am still trying to find my way through my new way of life. I have my good days and my bad days but I know that each morning when I awake, I have choices that I didn't have before.

I made myself make a list of things that bring me joy or things I have always had an interest in. I also made a list of the things that I can now do now that I am retired. It's all about finding a new perspective on life. My personal freedom is very, very important to me and now I don't drag around those chains that kept me from living my life the way I want to.

One of my current interests is reading books about lighthouses and hopefully, planning a trip to New England to see these magnificent buildings. I have recently discovered that my paternal ancestors are from French Canada. I never really knew why, since my childhood, why I enjoyed hearing French spoken. Now my second current interest is reviving my French language skills.

Randy, stop stressing over your retirement and find ways to create new joys, skills, or interests and let everything else fall into place. Sometimes it's hard to stop feeling that you have to control everything in your life. It's now time for you to design a new lifestyle for yourself and let the universe bring you new gifts and friendships.

Renew You
by: Michigan

Hi Randy,

I know exactly what you are saying. My first year was disappointing. I had planned to travel with my mom but she developed panic attacks the minute we were 30 miles from home. So no travel.

I hated having nothing to do I missed teaching so much. I spend many days sitting with my mom but I was becoming her age 93. I moved like a snail, napped all the time and had no energy. Then winter came and between the cold and snow I stayed at home read, watched TV, movies, and my mom and grand kids were the only people I talked too. I was going crazy.

In February I went to the doctor for a check-up and he was concerned with my loss of muscle tone and weigh ~ not skinny but fast weigh loss without trying sends up red flags. Bottom line I needed to get off my butt and stop feeling sorry for myself. Easy said than done especially in cold weather.

But when Spring came I started not for anyone but me. My first trip around the block was a shock ~ as I prayed God would help me get home safe.

Last summer I made a bucket list ~ things I wanted to do before I died ~ wow sounds depressing but it really wasn't. It was however eye opening how I had let my life be totally about my job and my family. I had never done anything for me never taken a vacation or been on an adventure in 20 years. So maybe start with that. In September I joined here and have enjoyed chatting with my new friends. I do still miss teaching and all the activities I use to do.

Now I exercise every day to music and sing ~ off key ha, ha! Since it's cold (32 today) I walk around my house and up and down my stairs. It's still lonely a lot of the time but I force myself to do something everyday to get out of the house. Oh I took up bowling I had never done it before but find it fun never though I'm terrible.

August is my date of retirement and this year I plan to celebrate unlike last year when I cried. Hang in there my friend and make a commitment to yourself to get out and have fun.

I hope this has been helpful.
Good let and get dancing
Sharol :>)

Now What?
by: Joe W.

I just wanted to know what activities you have tried out since you retired in 2003. I know that it takes several years to build a new ship and sail it into a new direction. But I also know that it shouldn't take forever to make some choices for yourself. Your the 'Boss' now to plan and live your own new retirement life.

Joe W.

lost in retirement
by: mildred/tn

I know the feeling. I had to reinvent myself .I was told to think back in my child hood as to what made me happy. I loved dolls and collect some. So I took a doll making course and did 4 dolls. But I was not satisfied.

So I became a foster parent-taking classes, getting home cked and up to date w/ safety issues.I only wanted babies. I had 8 babies before I got my special one to adopt. I was 60 years old. He was 6 days old when I got him. He was and is the most beautiful child. He is 19 and I am 78.

He makes me want to get up each day..

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