Retirement: A Vision for the Future

Every day, even if it is subconsciously, we plan for things. We plan what we’ll wear based on what the weather will be like, and what we can make for dinner with what’s left in the fridge.

Every day, even if it is subconsciously, we plan for things. We plan what we’ll wear based on what the weather will be like, and what we can make for dinner with what’s left in the fridge. We make plans with friends and family, and, sometimes, we even make plans years in advance!

From vacations to weddings, there’s a plan for everything; but, there’s one plan in particular that we spend our whole lives working towards – literally! Welcome to life’s third act – the hard-earned years of retirement!

Until recently, retirement has generally been seen as a sudden shift from being in the workforce to enjoying a far more relaxing, laid-back existence; which may still be the case for some! But there’s been a societal change in what it means to retire – and retirement is quickly being recognized as some of the best years of your life.

As a whole, we’re living longer, healthier lives, which means that now, more than ever, this third act of life presents us with the unique and beautiful opportunity to really live life to the fullest. More and more, we’re seeing people redefine what they think of and how they view their retirement plans, as they choose to wholly embrace an active, vibrant lifestyle.

Some may still plan for the casual, easy-going retirement that allows them to be close to their friends and families, while others may wish to embark on an epic adventure they’ve only ever dreamed of. Maybe, you want both! There’s no wrong way to embrace retirement, but we want to make sure that – whatever your dreams, no matter how big or small – you’ve crafted that vision, so you can live your dreams.

To help with that, our dedicated staff at Riverstone Retiree Apartments, located in the heart of West 5, have compiled a list of their favourite tips for creating the retirement plan that will help you get the most out of life’s third act!

First, Decide What You Want Your Retirement to Look & Feel Like

For some, this may feel like the hardest part, but if you start small, you may find you’ve known all along.

As you well know by now, there’s a world of opportunities out there, however, not all of them are going to be a good fit for you. So, now’s the time to take a look at who you are, who you’ve been, and who you’d like to be. Focus on the people and activities most important to you, and the rest will come easy!

A great first step is to take a walk through your “ideal day”. How does your day start? What hobbies and activities do you enjoy most? Who do you spend your time with? Questions like these will help you visualize what you’re looking for in a day, and highlight what’s most important. The beauty of retired life is that time is all yours to embrace and enjoy – with nowhere to be, outside of wherever you want to be.

Create Your Own Retirement Focused Vision Board

They say that seeing is believing, so what better way to plan out your future than with a collection of inspirational images and words that holistically represent the new lifestyle you’ll create for yourself in this stage of your life. Vision boards are widely used for goal-setting, and many believe this may be due to how vision boards help us gain self-awareness and allow us to self-reflect on what is most important to us.

Through the use of a vision board, we’re able to imagine and see what a positive future may look like, and find encouragement to stick to our plans and turn that vision board into a reality. Flexible enough that you can adjust and add new inspirational images or words as you find them, vision boards are a key tool to use for planning out your retirement! Platforms like Pinterest are incredibly helpful for creating a digital vision board that embodies and represents what you’d like your retirement to look and feel like.

Not sure how to get started on Pinterest? Take a quick look through this 5-day learning plan! Or, crack open the craft chest, scissors and glue, and exercise your creative brain with a real-world version you can walk past, or reflect on in your journal, each day.

It's All in the Details

It’s time to dig into the nitty-gritty details that maybe weren’t captured in your vision board and give some serious thought to how you might bring this new vision to life. Doing a little bit of research on how to create your new lifestyle may actually shed some light on options you didn’t know you had or hadn’t previously thought of. You might also consider talking to the experts – those who are already riding the wave of retired life! Don’t be afraid to reach out to friends, family and mentors who are already celebrating life’s third act, and ask them what they found most helpful while planning for their own retirement, or what they would have done differently. They may have some fantastic ideas and advice!

This is also a good time to consider whether you’re ready to downsize and enjoy a new community of like-minded peers such as the beautiful apartments or villas at Riverstone, or whether staying right where you are fits best with the lifestyle you’re planning for.

Making Every Day Your Ideal Day

In terms of time spent, working comes second only to sleeping. On average, that’s roughly 24% of our time spent at work during a typical 50-year stint of employment. And, while finally having the time to relax and make each day your own is definitely something worth celebrating, it can be harder to transition out of work-life and into a relaxed life than some may realize. This is why finding a hobby or something you’re passionate about is so important! Whether you’re volunteering or picking up a part-time job, exploring your favourite hobbies or thinking back on the things you’ve always wanted to do but never had the time and finally going for it, now is your moment to embrace life for everything you’ve wanted it to be, and ever could be.

Remember that retirement looks different for everyone and there is no right or wrong way to live this next stage of life, but if you want to get the most out of this third act, then just like any great adventure, it all starts with inspiration and vision for all that it can be.

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Sifton - Riverstone a retirement community located in London, Ontario.
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