Tags: retirement | savings | health | loneliness | work | seniors

10 Steps for Retirees to Avoid Feeling Lonely

10 Steps for Retirees to Avoid Feeling Lonely

By    |   Friday, 15 March 2024 08:14 AM EDT

Nearly one third, 31%, of retirees feel lonely or forlorn at times, a MassMutual poll of 2,000 retirees and pre-retirees found.

Nearly eight out of 10, 77% of pre-retirees, those 15 years away from retirement, said they expect to feel happier in retirement. In reality, 67% of retirees feel more contented in retirement than when they were working.

Retirees who are happier keep themselves busy with social activities. Seventy-six percent spend time with loved ones, 70% exercise, 63% pursue hobbies, 62% travel, and 49% take care of their health.

“MassMutual’s research on retirement happiness underscores the importance of managing expectations and preparing for retirement both financially and emotionally,” says Paul LaPiana, head of brand, product and affiliated distribution at MassMutual.

“The happiest retirees invest not just in their financial futures but also in their social circles and physical health long before retirement,” LaPiana says. “These investments can help mitigate loneliness in their older years, which the U.S. surgeon general declared a public health epidemic last year.”

Sunny Outlook on Golden Years

Pre-retirees have an overly optimistic view of what retirement will be like, the survey found. Seventy-nine percent foresee traveling and 71% exercising, the top two activities. In reality, 83% of retirees say watching television is their No. 1 pastime.

On a positive note, 78% of retirees say they have more money saved than they need or just about what they need in retirement, while only 19% have less than they need.

Forty-four percent of pre-retirees are anxious about how their finances will support them in retirement, but 46% of retirees report having fewer financial problems then before they retired.

“In similar research that we conducted a decade ago, we also found a strong relationship between happiness and planning, as retirees who expressed the highest levels of satisfaction were also those who took concrete steps to put their emotional and financial lives in order at least five years before retirement,” LaPiana said.

How Retirees Can Stay Active

There are many steps retired people can take to avoid boredom, stay connected, remain relevant, and avoid the blues, according to advice from AARP and major 401(k) savings firms, including Vanguard.

They include:

1.) Mentoring
2.) Exercising

3.) Becoming Financially Savvy
4.) Volunteering
5.) Returning to Work
6.) Spending Time With Family
7.) Maintaining Social Connections
8.) Hobbies
9.) Traveling
10.) Living in the Moment


Older adults can become mentors through local, civic groups, schools or their alma mater.

Bucks County, Pennsylvania, for instance, runs the SAGE program (Senior Adults for Greater Education) to connect adults 55 and older with volunteer mentoring opportunities in Pennsylvania school districts.

Seniors can also find opportunities as tutors, tour guides, or docents at tourist attractions.


Exercise should be high up on retirees’ priorities. According to the Department of Health and Human Service’s Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, people 65 and older should aim for 2-1/2 to four hours of moderate physical activity each week. For maximum health benefits, they can up that to 75 to 150 minutes of additional vigorous activity.

Retirees can also get in touch with nature by walking or hiking, and can avoid falls through balance exercises. Even if a person is physically limited, they can always swim, use weights, treadmills or cycling machines.

Stay (or Become) Financially Savvy

Being involved in their finances is not only smart for seniors — to stay on top of their money and avoid elder financial fraud — but it is yet another way to remain astute.


There are many local organizations that welcome senior volunteers, such as hospitals and libraries.


Nearly one in five, 19%, of people 65 and older are still in the workforce, according to the Pew Research Center. Part-time and hybrid work, and low unemployment, are making it even more possible for older people to work.

While many seniors need jobs for financial reasons, just as many want to work — to keep active, feel relevant, and remain mentally sharp.

Spend Time With Family

One of the biggest joys retirees say they enjoy is spending time with their family, especially their grandchildren and, if they’re lucky, their great grandchildren.

Social Connections

Even for those blessed with strong family ties, retirees find it gratifying to maintain social connections or form new ones. Local community centers, libraries and churches are good places for seniors to meet new people.

The joy and satisfaction of caring for a pet cannot be underestimated, either.


Seniors are known for deriving fulfillment and a sense of purpose from taking up hobbies such as painting, gardening, cooking, knitting, golf, learning a new language — even yoga or pottery.

Medical studies have found that engaging in hobbies later in life is linked to decreased mortality risk.


Retirees who are financially well off are renowned for traveling the world, but you don’t have to go to the far reaches of the globe to enjoy new places. Local attractions, museums, concerts or special events can be enjoyable, too.

Live in the Moment

Appreciating all that one has accomplished and the life that one has now, can be humbling, bring a sense of joy and peace to anyone of any age.

© 2024 Newsmax Finance. All rights reserved.

Nearly one third, 31%, of retirees feel lonely or forlorn at times, a MassMutual poll of 2,000 retirees and pre-retirees found.
retirement, savings, health, loneliness, work, seniors
Friday, 15 March 2024 08:14 AM
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