How to make working in retirement more enjoyable
Pursuing a job that gives you a sense of purpose and keeping a healthy routine may make working in retirement a fulfilling experience.
Many Australians choose to work part time after retirement instead of hanging up their work clothes completely. Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that 34 per cent of full-time workers aged 45 or over intended to switch to parttime work before retiring.1 Some people choose to lessen their workload to help ease themselves into retirement. Others want a higher income than what they would receive if they left the workforce altogether. Whatever the reason, working doesn’t have to stop you from enjoying retirement. After all, you have paid your dues, and deserve some flexibility and recreation. Here are some ways to help make your semi-retirement more enjoyable.
Choose a fulfilling job
Ideally, working in retirement should not be just about earning an income. While getting a regular pay cheque is good for your retirement fund, it’s advisable to be selective about any job you accept. Doing something that’s fulfilling or gives you a sense of purpose may help make it more worthwhile.
Having a flexible work schedule or work arrangement is also important. A flexible schedule may allow you to spend more time on creative or leisure activities, while the ability to work from home on some days may help achieve a good work–life balance. You could spend more time with your family and may even benefit from having a quieter and less stressful work environment.
Staying physically and mentally healthy in retirement is crucial, and maintaining an exercise routine can help. Also consider joining walking, yoga, meditation or other groups in your community to make staying healthy more fun and motivating.
Engage in activities outside work
After working full time for many years, it’s easy to end up spending more time at work than necessary. To break this habit, engage in a regular activity that will keep you busy and help you find fulfilment outside work. It can be as simple as learning a new computer skill or volunteering.
Consider your pension eligibility
Staying employed in retirement may be a great way to boost your income, but keep in mind that your earnings may have implications for your retirement benefits. For
example, working when you have become eligible for the Age Pension may reduce your pension payments.
Seek professional advice before accepting a job. Your financial adviser may help you optimise your retirement benefits while remaining employed.
1 Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2017, ‘Retirement and Retirement Intentions, Australia, July 2016 to June 2017’. Available at: http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/6238.0
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