When I first retired, years ago, I was desperate to find a new pace, a new passion that would make me get out of bed and jump into an activity that would keep me focused for hours and hours. I knew I would enjoy combing the beaches, and that reason alone, plus the fact that these beaches are for the most part easy to walk, made us move here to Oregon.
But one cannot walk all day.
I knew I liked gardening, and my new place had plenty of space and new challenges to keep me busy and contented for hours. But I needed more. Especially for those long winter months when both walking and gardening were not possible. Whenever I heard of an opportunity to volunteer for this or that, I eagerly jumped in. Soon, I was busy everyday, my calendar as full as the time I worked.
When you retire, you will start with a few hobbies, perhaps traveling, reading...
Then, because you want to stay in touch with friends, or make new friends, you'll join a variety of civic clubs, and soon you begin to volunteer to take leadership roles in as many groups as you can fit in. When you talk to your children or old friends, you'll list all the stuff you are doing as though this new resume will keep your reputation intact.
The truth is that we feel good when we're active, when we have a purpose.
But your life will change dramatically before you know it. A fall, an illness, a debilitating change in your lifestyle will rob you of that get-up and go self you used to be. Anticipate that you will change, that change is inevitable; anticipate that your resources will also change as you begin to hire people to do things you used to do for yourself.
But you will still have a wealth of experiences and opportunities in front of you at this time of your life.
Dive in! Everything you ever wanted to do before can be done now. Sleep late so you can go out dancing after dark. Learn a new hobby, even if you suck at it. Join groups, even if you know nobody else. If you don't like doing something, fine, don't do it. Nobody can force you; you can quit when you want.
Best of all, this "Goldergarten" experience is free.