Four keys to lowering any stress is to tackle your “stressors,” have an attitude of gratitude, accept people and be kind to yourself, says Amit Sood, author of The Mayo Clinic Guide to Stress-Free Living.
What are the top stressors for retirees? And how do you tackle those? Check out these tips.
Ways to Reduce Stress:
Top Stressor: finances.
Your worry about living on a fixed income.
Stress-reduction strategy: Beware of "awfulizing and catastrophizing your situation," says Steve Brody, a psychologist in Cambria, California, who works with retirees. Change your way of thinking. Instead of telling yourself that you won't be able to make ends meet, think, "I don't have as much money as I'd like, but I have $2,500 a month, and I can live on that."
Top Stressor: health.
You worry about future health problems and changes in insurance.
Stress-reduction strategy: Take care of your body by eating a healthful diet, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep and getting preventive care, Sood says. Plan for your future health care, and don’t spend all your time obsessing about it. Embrace life's uncertainties by letting go of the uncontrollable.
Top Stressor: caregiving.
You worry about caring for your spouse or who will care for you.
Stress-reduction strategy: The No. 1 strategy is getting help from others, including relatives, friends and professionals, Schulz says. Have a plan in place for future health care needs, if you or your spouse ever needs it.
Top Stressor: relationships.
You worry about feeling lonely and isolated.
Stress-reduction strategy: Take charge of your social life. Find opportunities for socialization and interaction with your peers. Socialization, in itself, is a great way to ward off any stressor, says Brody.
Top Stressor: change.
You worry about this time of enormous change.
Stress-reduction strategy: Realize that your brain's reward center likes variety, so give yourself a variety of experiences, Sood says. "Let your best friends not be the TV, refrigerator or couch. Let your best friends be real people, books and sports shoes."
Are you looking for less stress in retirement? Consider independent living for a maintenance-free home and a lifestyle of fun with your peers. For questions on independent living, contact one of our community specialist at Sugar Hill, 603-569-8485.