Tips for Creating Happy Retirement Relationships
Retirement offers a whole new way of life. However, it takes planning, courage and determination to create fulfilling, happy retirement relationships. Simply put, retirement is not for sissies!
Before you retire, take time to dream your wildest dreams and plan in advance. Long before most of us even thought of retiring, we heard about the importance of creating a retirement financial plan. However, couples with a retirement life plan generally find that it contributes more to their happiness than a financial plan.
Acknowledging dreams is an important aspect of that planning. Even if some of those dreams are to expensive or difficult to achieve, they create opportunity for creative thinking. Couples frequently find that at least part of their goals are accessible.
Identify what you enjoy doing together. While some couples may feel they have too much retired time together, some shared activities reduces that tension. For most couples, it is also important for each to have a few of their own activities. Be wise and plan accordingly.
Consider Space Accommodations
Consider individual space in your home for each partner. Most everyone benefits from some space and time on their own to pursue individual interests. One’s own special place as well as guilt-free time to pursue individual interests increases harmony in the relationship
Hold courageous conversations where each person feels comfortable identifying their special interests and concerns about this new life stage. Partners who do not share their hopes or fears for this life stage often have difficulty understanding the others’ actions or attitudes. For instance, a wife may wonder why her mate is angry. However, this anger may have nothing to do with her. His life and identity may had been wrapped around work and he misses that. Unless he helps his wife understand his feelings, she is likely to resent the anger he is demonstrating.
Never say “never” or “you always”. If an argument surfaces the accused partner hears only the accusation of guilt, not why the partner is upset. It is far more effective to tell your partner why an action is problematic rather than making accusations. For instance, he probably did take the garbage out in the past week or two. Hearing you NEVER take out the garbage produces defensiveness.
Take the time to listen to what your spouse is really saying. Too often, especially when there is tension, we tend to think we heard what the other said, or don’t listen at all. Solid relationships take a lot of empathy, and that is achieved when we recognize the other’s pain, concerns or desires.
Find reasons to compliment one another. Kindness is contagious. It’s harder to remain angry when another person is kind to you. Best of all, kindness deepens the bond as couples grow in their love and appreciation for one another.
Wishing you all happy retirement relationships and a beautiful summer!
Please share these thoughts with someone you love. ❤️