Retired and Now: No purpose

by Rosa
(Madrid, Spain - US citizen)

I am recently retired and like many longed for leisure time, time to meditate on life and to do things I had always wanted to do.

The problem is that since age 6 I have had no unstructured leisure time. Formal employment since age 22 - am now 63 - with no breaks.

I am divorced with no children and with a family that while close does not offer me great support, as they have their own problems and challenges. I live alone, but while I have friends have no one who periodically calls me everyday.

So I have visions of dying and not being found for a week - this did happen to a friend of mine so it is not that absurd.

Also like many my savings are not what they were - have lost quite a bit in the stock market so for now I have to live on my pension and try not to touch the savings - so I am worried about expenses, although not destitute.

I am still in contact with my place of employment, where I had a very successful career, but had to retire at a specified age, although my projects were not completed. Due to cut backs and the current economic situation, the person I had expected to replace me could not be hired and thus everything I created is slowing falling into decay.

So I find myself depressed and without purpose.

Wendy's Reply: It sure sounds like you are going through a grieving process of losing yourself. I think that's soooo sad!

At 63, please find your own retirement peace and live that completely active retirement.

I think we all spend too much time worrying about tomorrow, and the majority of things we worry about -- never happen.

Do yourself a favor, go to and order Eckert Tolle's book -- either THE POWER OF NOW, or A NEW EARTH. Buy your books used, most LOOK brand new, and you save a LOT! The second book can be read, while you watch weekly webcasts found on Oprah's website still. Weekly webcasts for every chapter -- and folks from around the world tuned in and skyped in to talk questions about finding internal peace. IT really still help you to stop that voice in your head.. all that self talk isn't doing you any good.

I wonder if your occupation (or a hobby, living in Spain, etc) would lend itself to sharing your ideas and knowledge through a blog (free) or website (not free, but you can earn an income)? Both, in time, will provide you with emails from folks - worldwide - who are looking for answers on whatever information you can provide. It's really quite fulfilling.

I will help you start a free blog if you are interested! It might help you think about something else, anything but your non-productive retirement... then little by little, you'll find the NEW and maybe even IMPROVED Rosa from Spain!

Comments for Retired and Now: No purpose

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Comments to Retired and No Purpose
by: Anonymous

It is the same response no matter what one Googles--get a hobby, volunteer, blog, learn to play an instrument, travel, etc.

There must be retirees that aren't hobby people, don't want to volunteer, etc. , but at some point in time retirement is inevitable.

What are these individuals to do to enjoy retirement? There must be some happy retirees who haven't done the usually prescribed things to do in retirement.

Any suggestions or comments?

Or are most retirees just unhappy--if this is the case, how sad.

Just feel so alone..
by: Anonymous

I too am retired but I have children but, their lives are very busy.

My spouse died 10 years ago... and I still really miss him...I do have a lot of friends but, still feel empty.. Most of my friends work.

I go to the mall to walk everyday.. I just have no ambition..
( I don't no what I want to be when I grow up) lol.. I need to feel that drive that is missing..

I seem to cry a lot and I know I have so much to be thankful for.. I need to get my groove back..

Is this all there is...

Do not worry
by: Anonymous

Hi Rosa,

I can relate to how you feel, just wanting to have a purpose, and to have someone truly love, care, and think of you, especially if you die. At a period of time in my life, I had no one who really cared for me, except for my family, but they were far away too and had their own lives.

I failed socially, academically, and had no purpose. It was a dark time for sure, and even though I did not believe in God, I was half angry and half pleading with him to help me get out of it.

Yet when I went to college, many people invited me to church. Initially I was skeptical and did not want to go, because I was not a 'good' person. Yet after many invites, and reading the Bible and attending church for the first time, I was surprised to find that church people were not scary, and that Jesus was a historical person, not made up, and yet someone so radically different from the world.

I started to read about him in the Bible in the book of Matthew, and He seemed to know everything I was going through, all people's anxieties, all my wrongdoings, and yet was so loving of others. He said, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." He healed the sick.

I also read other things like Psalm 139, which says, "O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar...if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast." To know someone like this God, and to know the people in the church who loved me, was something I had never experienced before.

Eventually I became Christian, as I saw how despite all my inner ugliness and regret, that God still loved me and cared for me, and gave me the church. What a wonderful thing my life is now, as because of God only, I have a purpose to get to share this with others, have true, deep relationships with others, that are not destroyed easily by competition or selfishness. And my amazing God will care for me, even after I die.

Will be praying for you, Rosa. Maybe you can check out a church or read the Bible, as church people will care for you, and of course God has been trying to find you. Hope things look better for you soon.

Retired and recently widowed
by: Judy

I lost my husband in Aug. I could not stay in my home because of too many memories so I moved into my daughter's basement. I remodeled it and she is very happy to have me here.

I am going to rent my farm to my step daughter but it needs some repairs first.

Because of the move the job was too far to drive so I retired the beginning of the year. Now I feel like I don't have a purpose.

I have no ambition. I feel like all I want to do is lay around and watch tv or read a book.

I am 63 and feel my life is over...

Wendy: Judy - contact me via the left navigation bar and join my Retirement Transition group... we are folks just like you trying to find our way!

Start Digging
by: Chuck

Rosa, you are in a rut and it keeps getting deeper the more you focus on what you DON'T have. Rather than trying to tackle all of your issues start with one.

I would suggest you think about putting yourself into a situation (s) where you might attract a new friend.

To do that, write down on paper 3 things that interest you personally. These interests should be things that you have never done before.

Next, think about how you can put yourself in the environment where these interests exist. It could be a place, an activity, an event, etc. Above all it must be something that interests you! Next, go there and get involved.

If you casually meet someone don't talk about your problems, focus on the interest and the comments of the other person.

If you meet someone, great, if not the pursuit of the interest may open a new door for you.

Good Luck.

Reply to Rosa
by: Elinor

Rosa- I started a reply and lost it midway.
Meybe I was being too wordy. I suggest you
go your library and ask librarian to show
you the books on retirement. There are so
many excellent titles. I know because I
write book reviews, then give the books to my "kids," now in their 50s and 60s. Since you
were creative in your work, could you start a
project for them as a volunteer? I was editor
of a senior paper and I continued to write articles for them 20+ years. Join local
groups. Get to know people your age with your
interests. Join an online group. You will never
be alone. Send me an e-mail: Let's talk about ideas
to keep you busy and happy.

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