Friendship plays an important role in our lives, no matter what age we are. Children invite friends around for playdates. Teenagers spend hours hanging out with friends at the mall. Workmates chat with friends during lunch breaks. Yet the act of keeping and making friends once retired proves challenging for many of us. We’re going to explain why this is hard and how you can make new friends during this part of your life.
Why keeping friends once retired is challenging
During our working lives, we tend to take for granted that we’re surrounded by workmates, some of whom we’re friends with. We eat lunch, have meetings and interact with our colleagues daily and even the idea of thinking we won’t be doing that anymore can be scary. That’s why before you retire, start making plans about whether you want to and how you will strengthen any or of these friendships out of the office. Otherwise, you may find that friendships drift apart easily.
Also, once we hit retirement age, we naturally want to begin to do all the activities, travel and jobs we didn’t have time for when working. Our old workmates don’t have that luxury, nor do they have the time to begin new pursuits. That makes it important for you to continue to do the same activities outside of work that you used to do, to maintain those friendships.
Tips on making friends once retired
It’s a whole new world out there once we finish work for good! The world is your oyster and you’re rearing to head out and grab it. While this is exciting, it can also be nerve-wracking, especially if you are doing them alone. Making new friends during your retirement can help, widening up your current circle of friends to let in new ideas and new ways of doing things.
Yet it can still be tricky to reach out to make new friends, which is why we’ve put together this list of tips for you about making friends:
- Introduce yourself to your neighbours and invite them round for coffee
- Pick a few exercise classes to attend
- Join a craft group
- Learn a new sport by joining a sports club
- Sign up for your local neighbourhood watch
- Visit your local senior citizen club
- Volunteer at an organisation you want to help
- Attend free community events
- Keep up with what’s happening in your local newsletter or via Facebook
As they say, you can’t choose your family but you can choose your friends! Surrounding yourself with like-minded people is a great way to meet new acquaintances and make new friends during retirement. Don’t forget to check out our Organisations Directory to learn more about the clubs and organisations you can join and meet new people at!