Retirement May Be Just the Boost You Need to Make New Friends
If you’re wondering how new friendships fit into life after retirement, consider how we make friends in the first place. Throughout the course of our lives, we become acquainted with hundreds of thousands of people: classmates, teammates, those with whom we worship or share our communities. Many adults forge social connections at work, so a majority of friendships begin at the office or job site. In fact, one study found 82 percent of people consider coworkers as friends.
But what happens once you trade in the nine-to-five for the “world’s longest coffee break?” Many retirees find that minus the social interaction of the workplace, they have few opportunities to make new friends. And close relationships are especially important in retirement, as they can positively impact mental and physical health.
Retirees have plenty of opportunities to meet people of all ages. It’s not challenging—if you know where to start. Just resolve to be open as you try some of these resources for locating individuals and groups.
How to Make New Friends After Retirement:
Join a club. Nothing sparks friendship as easily than sharing common interests. Love reading? Join or start a book club. Love games? Become a member of a bridge group or play bingo. Senior clubs run the gamut, from knitting to stargazing, wine making to painting. Don’t have one in your area? Start one up, and find yourself the center of attention.
Get active. One way to meet new friends is through a shared dedication to exercise. Walking groups, hiking meetups, even yoga practices for seniors are all great ways to meet others. Especially beneficial are team sports and other activities that require multiple participants, such as bocce ball or badminton.
Volunteer. Giving back not only helps those in your community, it also connects you with generous people like yourself. Whether it’s serving at a soup kitchen, collecting donations, or helping a local school or theater group, volunteering broadens your roster of acquaintances. Working toward a common cause is one way to build relationships organically.
Take a class. Learning in company is a fun and satisfying way to meet people. Many colleges and universities offer courses and educational workshops just for seniors, as do senior centers and community organizations. Even in virtual classes conducted online, students are encouraged to interact with and learn from one another.
Go online. Social media isn’t just for the younger generations. You’ll find countless ways to meet folks online in a safe and secure manner. Facebook Groups make it easy to connect with others with similar interests. Discussion topics range from humor to nostalgia, aging to current events. Other Internet communities include senior-centered chat rooms like Silversurfers and Buzz 50, while Meetup can connect you to locals in your area for events like in-person yoga and hiking.
Making Friends at Cumberland Village
Social interactions are part of what makes Cumberland Village such a great place to live. Activities such as exercise classes, games, and movie nights encourage mingling, and many residents have formed lifelong friendships. No matter your passion, there are plenty of opportunities here for you to meet new people and make new friends—especially after retirement.