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 package to go.
I had ample funds put away to retire comfortably. What could be simpler then the decision to accept the redundancy offer and have a life of playing golf , watching rugby and weekends away at the coast ,,,,,wrong, wrong ,wrong.
I went into a complete panic and could not imagine life not working after 43 years on the job. I had visions of me sitting and staring at the wall with nothing to do.
I had a near breakdown with the anxiety that the retirement decision was causing. I could not sleep and my wife was at her wits end trying to work out what was wrong with me, I was a complete mess and needed help.
Thanks to my very supportive daughter I went to my GP and had some time off work and he referred me to a phycologist. My visits to the phycologist was the best thing I did, he explained to me that I wasn’t going mad and that change takes time to adjust to, He said the “unknown” is a very scary place and the anxiety I was going through was a normal reaction.
I am now in a much better head space and have accepted the redundancy and will retire in a few weeks , I have a plan and my “ retirement week “ is starting to fill up with various activities.
My advice to anyone going through retirement anxiety is to ask for help from professionals. Don’t listen to what your friends or work mates tell you as its always from their prospective and they have no idea what retirement is like.