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What is Retirement Depression?

The sound of your alarm clock blaring in your ear wakes you up. 6:00am on the dot. Your eyes shoot open, and you throw the covers off of yourself and crawl out of bed. Your first stop is the bathroom where you jump in the shower and begin your morning routine.

After brushing your teeth, you head to the kitchen and start to make yourself some breakfast.

You scan your closet and eventually settle on your outfit for the day. Running through a mental checklist, you gather all of your belongings.

You pause as soon as your hand grabs the door handle. It hits you.

What are you doing? You have no plans for the day. You have no job to go to anymore. You’re retired.

You start to wonder who are you without your career? What are you supposed to fill your days with if you don’t have a job to go to?

What is Retirement Depression?

Retirement may seem like a time where you can relax and have more free time to do the things you love, but for some, it can also lead to feelings of depression.

Many people link their careers as part of themselves. Their work gave them a sense of purpose in life. Their career made them a member of their community and society. It also helped provide for the life they built for themselves or their family.

Another cause of retirement depression can be the changes in home life. Your partner may still be working, and you may be the only one at home during the day. Or maybe you’re both retired and at home all day long together. Either way, this sudden change can be a tough one to navigate.

Retirement can also be viewed as a constant reminder that you’re getting older. Fears of aging, death, sickness, and disability may start to trickle in and cause depression-like symptoms.

How to Cope with Retirement Depression

There are several things you can do to try to make your transition into retirement a little easier on yourself.

Find Your New Routine

Before retirement, you used to plan your day around your job. Around the hours of 8am to 5pm, you were busy with work. Now that you don’t have that structured schedule anymore, you need to find a new routine that works for you. Retirement doesn’t have to mean doing nothing all day.

Fill your day with things that bring you joy. Go on a walk outside, find time for gardening, exercise, or volunteer in your community.

Go After Your Dreams

Now that you have more free time, go after the things you always wanted to that you may not have had the time for previously. Find a new hobby for yourself to fill your time with. Or maybe you can go exploring and travel more to places you’ve never been.

There is nothing stopping you. Get after it!

Get Together with Family, Friends, and Loved Ones

Visit your family and friends. Plan meals together. Offer to babysit or watch the kids for a day or even a weekend. Invite your family or friends over for coffee, dinner, or drinks.

You have more time and energy to surround yourself with loved ones. Chances are that you have friends or family that are also already retired as well.

Seek Help from a Professional

Sure, there are ways you can try to cope with your depression, but you don’t have to go through the fight alone. There are people who will help you get through these changes you’re facing. Family, friends, or even an unbiased third party like a therapist can help coach you through the depression you’re facing. They can give you the tools you need to overcome these uncertain times in your life.

Your time is now. Contact us, 256-686-9195, to schedule your first appointment today.

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