Make living well a passionate, personal expression and lifestyle choice.
No matter who you are, where you live, your financial resources or health issues, living well is a personal positive belief to be reinforced. Comparing yourself to others, television ads, regrets, negativity, defensiveness and anger at the Universe will make your senior years a painful emotional and mental experience.
Make it a point to appreciate every day, what you have mentally, emotionally, physically and materialistically. Obtaining and attaining a materialistic lifestyle is, in your senior years, unfulfilling. You already have everything you need, there's no need to try to attain more materialistic goods. In fact, "less is more" since the best things in life are now free. https://www.huffpost.com/entry/unclutter-your-life-declu_b_7144332
Make it a point to live well, no matter your circumstances, enrich your life with experiences, friends, children and pets. Living well means giving back too, volunteer, teach, mentor, give back to others less fortunate those skills and wisdom you have attained. Help enrich and make another person's life memorable. Pay it forward, next time you're in the grocery line and someone ahead of you doesn't have the change to pay the bill, pay it for them. Make little gestures toward Humanity compassionately without the need for recognition.
And, be kind and good to yourself. Being selfless has its merits, but you must also do little things for yourself. Treat yourself well, doesn't take a lot of money to do so. Treating yourself well in the senior years is more about mental and emotional wellness than anything else. https://www.lifehack.org/304487/top-20-signs-you-know-how-love-yourself-and-treat-yourself-well-2
Just as important as having a positive outlook on life, where and how you live will play a major impact on your happiness. This is going to be, or is, greatly impacted by and based upon your financial resources - whether you're well off, or just getting by.
Conventional wisdom has it that one must guard their financial resources carefully when retired, That said, choosing a State or International destination to avoid or minimize taxes is a major goal. Living as an expat in an International destination has it merits, but is it right for you? It takes adventurous individuals to relocate to a country where, possibly, you don't speak the language, understand cultural customs and mores, and use unfamiliar medical services that are not similar to the United States. Don't be fooled by the beautiful photos and glowing reviews, if you are considering this, research it seriously and in-depth. Buying a residence in an International location may not be the best option, and if you are new to or have never resided for any time in an International location, it is best to rent at first. https://money.usnews.com/money/retirement/baby-boomers/slideshows/the-best-affordable-places-to-retire-overseas
Looking for a location in the United States? The default value has always been and continues to be Florida. But there are plenty of locations through the Country that offer a comfortable retirement experience. Be sure to research them well considering social and medical services, cultural and employment opportunities and more that is important to you. It's also important to consider whether you will rent or buy your residence. Both have their options and drawbacks which need to be seriously considered. https://money.usnews.com/money/retirement/slideshows/the-best-places-to-retire
Or maybe you want to be a Snowbird (or the reverse), living in a warmer climate in the Winter and a cooler climate in the Summer, be it Internationally or with the United States. This has long been an option for the fully retired set. Again, research this option closely and choose your options wisely.
The conventional way to reside is in a residence, but other options are available - living on a boat, in a houseboat, RV or a a tiny home that can be transported. All can offer a satisfying retirement experience but, again, be sure to consider options and drawbacks. https://www.zillow.com/blog/whats-it-like-living-in-a-houseboat-132119/ Be sure to see the critically acclaimed "Nomadland" based on the book about a senior woman living in her van traveling the US. For mored on the film: https://www.huffpost.com/entry/nomadland-oscars-chloe-zhao-frances-mcdormand_n_602aa25cc5b6d667582ea8e1
No matter where and how you wish to live in your senior years, be sure that that decision will provide you with a comfortable living environment that will suit your needs.
No matter how and where you chose to live, it is important that your living space reflect and express your distinct personality and lifestyle. Make your living space as relaxing and comforting as possible, surround yourself with personal objects of meaning, relaxing sights and smells, and comforting furniture and wall art. Think about it, does your living space reflect you now? Are you living with furniture that is outmoded, falling apartment, no longer viable for your lifestyle, is uncomfortable or taking up too much space?
Step back a moment, ask yourself: Do I really need all this space to live in? Do I really need all this furniture that's 20 or more years old? Does my living space reflect my lifestyle and personality NOW (not years ago)? Is my living space comforting, relaxing, calming and conducive to peace and comfort? If you can answer yes to all questions - GREAT! But in all likelihood, you've answered "no" to more than one question. So, let's take a moment to use the "capsule wardrobe" concept applied to your living space.
You probably don't need all the furniture that you have in your living space (unless you've radically downsized recently), so now is the time to let the majority of the pieces go. "Less is more" should be your adage now. Use the "capsule wardrobe" concept, keep the pieces that will function well for you and rid yourself of the rest. In fact, you should consider incorporating more age-worthy pieces in their place. Consider colors, textures, lifestyle options, comfort and living space accommodations. Make your living space exhude a "Zen" ambiance - peaceful, comfortable, accommodating, tranquil, expressive of your personal style and responsive to your age-related physical and health needs. Incorporate scents and sounds to help you relax and enjoy your living accommodations. Consider candles and aromatherapy, nature sounds and waterfalls as part of your living arrangements . It is time now to reach a plateau in your life - that you live in peace, happiness and comfort integrated into your personal style and calming, relaxing and peaceful living space.
Living well means that you also cherish the Planet and treat it and its citizens with compassion and dignity in your everyday activities. Making this a goal and incorporating it into your lifestyle will help leave the Planet better off for next Generations, its inhabitants and habitat. Choose your possessions, activities and food nutrients wisely to promote the Planet's health. Choosing to live in a sustainable way that does not waste or abuse resources, compassionately supporting and protecting Human and animal resources can reward your soul and demonstrate your compassion. There are many causes you can support through your actions and they can, no matter how small they may seem, make a difference. For some inspiration, www.real simple.com offers ways to help save our Planet. https://www.realsimple.com/home-organizing/green-living/planet-friendly-tips
You don't have to be wealthy to travel, and in fact a "staycation" may suffice. Whether your budget is limitless or tight, you CAN travel and should. Be novel in your approach, make travel an enriching experience for your soul. There are so many options and places to choose from - staying with relatives, guided excursions, airbnb, a driving tour, renting a camper.... It's a matter of how and to where, and your physical capabilities as well. Even if your budget is tight, consider a staycation in your own city. Check into a local well-known hotel for two nights, get out and about to museums, ride the local Metro to places you have never set foot in and eat at a local iconic restaurant. Endless things to do right in your own City's backyard. Be sure to take advantage of all senior discounts that you can, whether locally or Internationally. And, be sure that wherever you choose to visit, your health insurance is current and you are physically able to undertake activities that may be required in your vacationing activities. Some tips are readily available at the AARP website, check them out: https://www.aarp.org/travel/?cmp=KNC-BRD-MC-REALPOSS-TODAY-BING-SEARCH-TRAVEL&gclid=CNO1_LuUhOgCFUKAxQIdPZ4PkA
For the time being International travel - for the most part - is completely curtailed. There are a few Countries that you may access and if you are considering this, check local COVID travel requirements and restrictions before you plan to visit.
As discussed above, where we live, how we live and how we surround ourselves in our living space contributes greatly to serenity, comfort, security and the ability to live peacefully while withstanding outside pressures and drama. During this time of restricted social mobility, it is important that your living space is comfortable, accommodating, inviting and peaceful. It will make it all the more easier to remain at home while adhering to social distancing and stay-in-place requirements. This is the time to "test drive" your living environment to identify areas of stress due to uncomfortable furniture, poor design feng shui and outmoded or worn out furnishings. If necessary, new or replacement furniture may be in order. And, this time spent inside the home will identify areas where safety equipment may be necessary, such as grab bars in the shower, non-slip flooring and whatnot to protect again slips and falls. If you are fortunate to have a back yard that you may use, consider whether your furnishings there are creating a calm and peaceful setting, while making sure it is safe and well tended.
The post-Pandemic American lifestyle will be one that is entirely new to you unless you survived the social upheaval and societal changes due to the pandemic of 1918. Our culture will change on all levels, education, the economy, health, mobility, social activities, the working environment, education and more. For the foreseeable future, facial coverings and social distancing will be the norm, with large gatherings of people curtailed. You will need to move about in society alert with respect to your distance from other individuals and your face covered to avoid contracting or spreading COVID-19. This virus is especially pervasive and will be circulating in waves and not contained/curtailed/eradicated until a vaccine is developed that can accomplish that. It is anticipated that it will circulate throughout our society through 2021, and possibly later.
As restricted social mobility is relaxed, it will still be important to follow governmental mandates, wear your facial covering and practice social distance. If you are permanently retired and do not work, it will be easier to practice social distancing as you will be able to order medications, food, groceries, interact with your Physician virtually and more so you will not have to move about in society as much. While this sounds restrictive, it is not. Never has there been such a plethora of choices to assist senior citizens live well. Driving is not really a must-do, and paying for auto maintenance and insurance can foregone, saving money. Same holds true for other items, such as clothing, household items, books, games and more. A visit to www.amazon.com, www.walmart.com, www.freshly.com, www.grubhub, any grocery store or pharmacy and other similar websites is a great way to have your items delivered to you.
If you are still employed, you will need to become accustomed to working remote and other employer new requirements to protect you, your workplace and co-workers from contracting and passing along the virus. If you will be seeking work, it may be very challenging as the unemployment rate in April 2020 hit 20% and was expected to climb. But that is not all, doom and gloom, new positions will be created to deal with the virus, many of which will be particularly geared toward those who can work from home, are flexible and part-time work. Keep you eye on the changing nature of the workforce in response to eliminating the virus.
While the economy is taking a major hit, one that rivals the Great Depression, stay the course for your investments. Reduce your personal cost of living to remain liquid, but make sure that your living environment is peaceful, comforting and welcoming. Get used to Zoom and Zooming your interaction with your family and friends. It's easy, quick and can be done from the comfort of your home.
Social distancing doesn't mean social isolation, quite the contrary it means using alternative means of connecting with your family, friends, shops, pharmacies, groups of people with like interests, learning, working and the like. You can even get married legally virtually on Zoom. You'll need to accept and incorporate this "new normal" social relationships and mobility paradigms into your lifestyle. It may mean purchasing a better/newer computer but it is money well spent. It is up to you whether you hibernate in your home under a rock without social interaction using technology plugging along wishing for the good ole days, or you reach out to society through new tools and resources.
While you may not relish the lack of mobility you once had, realize that perhaps large social in-person gatherings (such as sports, conventions, Las Vegas stays, cruises, airport and airline routines and the like) must be curtailed/restricted/redesigned to eradicate the virus spread and that, perhaps, they're over-rated anyway. You can watch live games on TV, attend conventions and the like through virtual attendance, travel through special travel documentaries and attend museums through virtual events - you may even grow accustomed to the peace of doing this easily from your own living space without shoving through less than respectful crowds and driving through crowded parking lots.
If you do endorse the "new normal" you may even find that it's even better than what you thought was a great way of living before the pandemic. See: https://news.sky.com/story/coronavirus-the-unexpected-benefits-of-a-world-in-lockdown-11985708
Now that the US is getting its population vaccinated and the end of the Pandemic danger is in sight, reflecting on that lockdown time is now a good idea:
The Pandemic lockdown time gave us all an opportunity to slow down and appreciate the calm of our lifestyle and take a good look at what we, pre-Pandemic, considered it to be. Overcoming our isolation gave us the ability to consider the intrinsic qualities of life and to reconsider how we would change our lifestyle for the better once we are out from under lockdown status.
It is a good thing to look back and appreciate the positive side of the lockdown and how it will change our lifestyle and wellbeing forever.