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How to make friends during retirement and why seniors need to

If you’re retiring or recently retired, you probably have a long list of things you can’t wait to do.

There’s a certain irony about retirement. Now that you have the time for all those back-burner projects and activities, you may have trouble finding people to do them with.

That’s because once you retire it can hard to keep up a network of friends.

Last year, the Stanford Center on Longevity produced research showing that older generations (boomers) are the most likely to be ‘disengaged’ from social networks. Other studies correlate those findings; with the 50+ set most likely to report they feel isolated and lonely.

Isolation and Loneliness are Bad for Health

Did you know that isolation and loneliness aren’t just depressing? They’re actually bad for your health.

Feeling cut off from society and isolated can have a negative effect on both mental and physical health in older adults. The good news is you don’t have to submit to isolation and loneliness.

Expanding Your Circle of Friends during Retirement

Here are four ways to make friends once you’ve retired.

1. Volunteer

There’s no better way to have a positive effect on society—and yourself—than by doing good for others. Whether it’s ladling soup to help end hunger or walking the dogs and hanging out with the cats at your local animal shelter, there’s a volunteer opportunity to fit every personality and every social angle.

2. Join a Club

Another avenue for building long-lasting friendships during retirement years is to bond over similar interests. Clubs are great for that because they bring people together expressly for this purpose. They can be a way to show and share your expertise with others.

They’re also your chance to take up a new hobby.

Ever wondered what square dancing is like? Join a group and you could be touring the circuit as part of a traveling dance group. Love the close-knit camaraderie of a quilting circle? That, too, could take you far—all the way to a blue ribbon at the State Fair!

Some clubs are more athletic, and some seniors get quite serious about their passion for sports and competition. Ever thought about competing in the Senior Olympics? The network of Olympians is an extremely social bunch.

3. Become a Mentor

As boomers age, they represent an approaching tidal wave of changes in how seniors live and engage with society. Within their ranks, they possess vast resources stemming from their experience, their education, and their financial means.

Imagine sparking a social revolution, where seniors become mentors to the younger generation, helping them solve practical problems in business, education, society, and beyond. It’s already happening in some communities.

Becoming a mentor is how you become engaged with younger generations who are shaping the world of today and tomorrow. It’s a great way to put your knowledge and experience to work, and an even better way to connect with other generations in a meaningful way.

4. Consider Relocating to an Active Adult Community

One of the exciting advantages of moving to a senior living community is the variety of social opportunities. At Sunrise, whether it’s independent living, assisted living, or memory care, an active social network awaits newcomers.

Opportunities for Socialization at Sunrise Senior Living

Every Sunrise Senior Living community features its own programming and activities, offering residents a variety of meaningful ways to make friends. If you’d like to see a sample of a weekly activity calendar, visit the Sunrise Senior Living community nearest you online.

You’re welcome to join us for any activity that looks intriguing so you can see the Sunrise difference firsthand!

Article By: Sunrise Senior Living

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We would love to help guide you on your senior living journey. Fill out the form and one of our senior living experts will be in touch within 24 hours to discuss any questions you have.

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