Discover more from Epic Retirement
Science Says: Want a Fulfilling Retirement? Focus on relationships and resilience, not just money
In retirement, we all want to achieve real, quality happiness, but what does that really mean? Let's take a look at the science.
Today I want to talk about something that's near and dear to all of our hearts: how to achieve real, quality happiness in retirement. We all want to have a happy and fulfilling retirement, but what does that really mean? And how can we achieve it?
Well, I've been reading up on the Harvard Study of Adult Development, and let me tell you, it's a fascinating piece of research that sheds some light on these very questions.
Thanks for reading Epic Retirement! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.
For those of you who aren't familiar with the study, it's been going on for over 80 years, and it's tracked the lives of two groups of men: one group from Harvard College and one group from the poorest neighbourhoods of Boston. These men were interviewed and tested every few years, then their families were also studied as the generations grew. The study has yielded some incredible insights into what makes people happy and fulfilled over the course of their lives.
So what did the study find? Well, one of the most surprising things is that money and success don't necessarily lead to happiness. In fact, the men who were most successful in their careers often ended up feeling lonely and unfulfilled, while the men who had strong relationships with their family and friends were the happiest.
Another key factor in happiness, according to the study, is the ability to cope with life's challenges. The men who were most resilient, who were able to bounce back from setbacks and keep moving forward, were the happiest and healthiest in the long run.
And perhaps most importantly, the study found that happiness and fulfilment in retirement depend on maintaining strong relationships and connections with others. The men who had close relationships with their partners, children, and friends were more likely to be happy and healthy in their later years.
So what does all of this mean for those of us who are thinking about or planning for retirement? Well, it means that we need to focus on the things that really matter: our relationships with others, our ability to cope with challenges, and our overall sense of purpose and meaning in life. It means that we need to prioritise the people we care about, and invest time and energy into building and maintaining those relationships. And it means that we need to develop resilience and a positive outlook, so that we can weather the ups and downs of life with grace and dignity.
In short, if you want to be happy in retirement, focus on the things that really matter: your relationships, your resilience, and your sense of purpose. These are the things that will sustain you and bring you joy in the years to come. And remember, happiness is not a destination; it's a journey, and it's up to you to make the most of it.
Want to reach out? You can email me on email@example.com anytime! I’d love to hear from you with ideas, inspiration and feedback.
Have a lovely Easter. Leave your comments on the article here:
Make it epic!
Bec Wilson Xx
Interesting reading this week
The older you get the more you value super: Phillip Coorey, Australian Financial Review
What is the ideal retirement age for your health? Dana G Smith, New York Times
A huge sigh of relief for the retirement living sector as AVEO settles class action, Bec Wilson, Epically