10 tips to keep the spark alive in retirement

General (Archived)

Once you enter into your retirement, routine is thrown right out of the window and for some, it can become quite a strain on your relationship.

We carried out a study looking at the range of activities which are key to a happy retirement. The study has provided quite the insight into retired life, with plenty of inspiration for readers to help keep the spark alive in their relationships when it's finally time to retire!

  1. Spend time together outside. Whether you're relaxing in the garden with a glass of something or heading off on a hike, making sure you get enough mood⁠-⁠boosting vitamin D can fend off any minor disagreements! 61% of the retirees question thought that spending time in the great outdoors was key to a happy retirement.
  2. Wine and dine each other. Age Partnership's study showed that eating out twice a month is important to 31% of retirees, so treat your partner to a special night out and try some local restaurants.
  3. Don't set an alarm! Waking up naturally was cited as the most important activity to ensure a happy retirement, so to ensure you and your other half wake up happy, turn off your phones and alarms, avoiding any unnecessary alerts which could bring you out of your much⁠-⁠needed slumber.
  4. Make time for romance. Just because you're out of routine, don't let your sex life suffer, as 20% of retirees will tell you that it's key to a happy retirement!
  5. Stay in touch with your family, and in particular, make sure you see your grandchildren at least once a month. Family time is so important and keeping those relationships healthy can ensure a minimum amount of stress at home.
  6. Keep on top of the chores at home. 58% of retirees said this is the key to their happiness, and it is particularly important if one of you is retired whilst the other is still working – coming home to a tidy house will help those who are still working relax once they walk in the door.
  7. Keep in shape. Keeping yourself trim not only helps you stay healthy, it also gives you a rush of happy endorphins – so it’s no surprise that 27% of retirees voted for this.
  8. Eat healthily. Whether you're eating out or staying in, cooking something special for your partner will help to keep you both happy, and if it's healthy, then your waistlines will certainly benefit too.
  9. Keep some time aside for yourself. Whilst it's fantastic to have so much spare time to spend with your other half and enjoy their company, you don't want it to wear too thin! 23% of respondents said having time separate to their other half was important, whilst 18% feel that having separate hobbies is the key to a happy retirement.
  10. Be impulsive. Keep things exciting by randomly visiting friends, checking out whatever is on at the local cinema, or travel to the theatre to see a show – you'll both enjoy the outing and the opportunity to spend time together.

Tim Loy, chief executive at Age Partnership, commented: "The fact that so many retirees are enjoying their free time is encouraging. And it's great to see that so many of the common factors amongst a happy retirement are active, social activities – improving overall quality of life.

"Here at Age Partnership, we believe people who at or approaching retirement deserve to get the best out of life. Juggling finances and planning for the future can be challenging which is why it’s vital that people are equipped with all of the knowledge and advice to enable them to make informed decisions, and we are here to do just that.

“Once the finances are in line, filling their days with what they enjoy doing is clearly the key to enjoying the retirement years – and many of the things in this list don’t have to cost a penny.”