A healthy and fulfilling life for older Veterans
Retirement and aging can be challenging. For those Veterans who have difficulty adjusting, connecting with counseling and therapy can ease this transition. Listen to these Veterans talk about how they found solutions to live well as they get older, leave jobs, and start their next phase of life.
NEED HELP NOW?
Call The Veterans Crisis Line at (800) 273-8255 And Press 1. Or Send A Text Message To The Veterans Crisis Line At 838255.
They offer free, confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
What should I know about retirement and aging?
Retiring from the workforce can be exciting. It allows you to spend more time with family and friends, take up previous hobbies or develop new ones, volunteer for causes you care about, or focus on your own health and well-being. In general, later life can offer meaning and fulfillment. As people get older, they often see the world in new ways and with additional perspective.
Most of the time, retirement and aging bring a sense of clarity and new purpose, but sometimes they can require a period of adjustment or give rise to new challenges. Key areas of your life may be different as you get older and transition to life after work.
“When I retired, I was worried about leaving a life that was so structured. It turns out that my free time meant I got to see my grandchildren a lot more.”
Although you can’t control your age or turn back time, a healthy lifestyle can make you feel younger and more vital, and can help you enjoy your later years. By eating healthily and exercising regularly, you can stay physically fit and improve your overall well-being.
What should I keep an eye out for as I get older?
Although aging brings many positive changes and opportunities, it is normal to feel uncertain or concerned about the aging process. You may experience any of the following:
- Feeling unhappy about your body’s physical changes
- Becoming tired more quickly, needing to rest more frequently, or feeling weaker
- Noticing changes in your ability to hear or see as well as you used to
- Having a slower sexual response
- Worrying about financial issues
- Going through changes in relationships with your spouse or partner, adult children, or friends
- Experiencing stress from taking care of or supporting loved ones with health problems
While retirement is an exciting phase for many people, certain issues can make planning for retirement challenging, including:
- Having fewer distractions and more “down time” to recall troubling events from your past, including combat and other military experiences
- Losing touch with co-workers and friends
- Feeling like your days lack focus without the routine of work
- Feeling upset when hearing about current events or news reports that may bring back memories of negative events during military service
Some of the challenges that may come with aging and retirement can be difficult and stressful and can put a strain on your relationships. You might feel down on yourself or find it harder to enjoy the things you usually like doing. You may be dealing with chronic pain or medical conditions, or facing the illness or death of a loved one.
What can I do about potential challenges related to aging and retirement?
As you get older, it may help to:
- Ask others for help.
- Talk to other Veterans or friends and family with experiences similar to yours.
- Enjoy a healthy lifestyle; combine an exercise routine with a healthy diet.
- Avoid foods with a lot of fat or salt, such as fried foods or unhealthy snacks.
- Quit smoking.
- Refrain from excessive drug and alcohol use.
- Keep your mind active through social activity, being curious and learning new things, using computers, or reading.
- Devote time to causes and people you care about.
In the past, you may have tried to cope with stress in your life by working a lot or by drinking alcohol or taking drugs. If so, you could benefit from healthier ways to cope as you get older. Asking for help from those close to you, working to help others, developing healthy lifestyle habits, exploring religion and spirituality, and planning for your financial security can ease the transition into retirement.
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Give the San Jose Vet Center a call, at (408) 993-0729 to get back to your best life.
MAKE THE CALL –
San Jose Vet Center is open:
7 AM to Midnight on weekdays
8 AM to 4:30 PM on weekends (holidays included)
Give them a call to get back to your best life. (408) 993-0729.