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How Would Your Rate YOUR Retirement Happiness?

Category: Health and Wellness Issues

December 29, 2019 — What makes for a happy retirement… and what are the factors that drive the not so good ones? We would love to find out more about that dynamic. Plus, get a base level reading on just how happy the Topretirements Membership is. So please help us all out by taking a few minutes to complete this quick survey on Retirement Happiness. We promise a full report in the next few weeks, it should be very interesting.

Take the Happiness Survey

Posted by Admin on December 29th, 2019


  1. Please don’t forget to take our Happiness survey. I think you will find it easy to complete and interesting. So far the number of people taking it has been very disappointing. We are counting on you – please be a participant, not a lurker! Here is the link

    by Admin — December 30, 2019

  2. Please understand that many of your readers aren’t retired!

    by Laurie — January 3, 2020

  3. To Laurie’s point, I think maybe the term “retirement” no longer means what it used to. Many senior citizens, your readers, don’t consider themselves “retired” from anything. I answered the survey, but I found it mostly inapplicable to me and to most people my age that I know. I changed careers from a fast paced job, to teaching full time. This is how I plan to spend my “golden years”, until I simply can’t due to health reasons. I am past SS FRA. Am I “retired” according to the survey? The questions really didn’t fit my situation. There may be many who take that gold watch and a pension and spend the rest of their lives traveling or enjoying “free time”, but most of my friends are working In some capacity and plan to do so until they are not physically able to. Think RBG, etc. So, maybe the survey questions essentially embrace a notion of “retirement” from past generations.

    by Maimi — January 4, 2020

  4. Miami, that’s certainly a personal point of view. Most would say that I had four significant carierers in my life — plus my service in the USAF. When I left the third, I “retired” to work at least as hard on my fourth and have continued with “work” non-stop through today. What I see as entering “retirement” is approaching the right age and being able to claim independence — your time is your own whether part-time employment that you have no real commitment to or running your own business “because you want to”. My enjoyment of hard work (including physical labor) does not detract from my retirement, it enhances it. Spending my life as I choose (even if I were working for someone else), can constitute retirement. Granted, for those who must work to simply be able to live (there are many), retirement may always be a dream.

    by RichPB — January 4, 2020

  5. I just noticed this survey, when it first appears in the email I thought it was a link back to an earlier happiness blog.

    by Jean — January 5, 2020

  6. Admin, I took the happiness survey, but Question 12 didn’t seem to work in terms of being able to rank the activities.

    Editor’s Comment: Q 12 is a drag and drop. Drag your top choices to the top. If you are on an iphone or ipad you might not be able to do that. But you can write them in Q 13. Thanks for letting us know.

    by Clyde — January 5, 2020

  7. Is there but one definition of “retirement” that works for all? Probably not.
    Upon my retirement, 8 years ago, I found out quite quickly that I had not prepared myself emotionally. For the first time in my life, I had nothing to do, nor anywhere to go. It was hugely unsettling. How I defined myself, and just where I fit in, had vanished. Sitting on a beach somewhere watching the ocean would not work for me. Even though I had “kinda” prepared economically, I further found that spending…even for necessities, was difficult.
    Going back to work( on my terms) was my solution. In my chosen area of retirement, Rural Public bussing became my new passion. I became more intertwined with my new town, and it’s inhabitants. I made a nominal hourly wage, but it helped to erase the panic of spending with no paycheck. It gave me a good reason to get up in the morning, and helped me understand just how fortunate I was in the great scheme of things. Many of my “clients” ((passengers) were far worse off than I, and my focus turned away from any discomfort I might have been experiencing, to endeavoring to improve the lives of those around me.
    As of today…..thepaid driving has morphed into solely voluntary driving for our local Veterans Hospital. The lessons learned prior still carry forth into today, and I can’t imagine doing anything else.
    Although, this, I realize, might not work for everyone…..I would suggest at least considering volunteering in some capacity. There are countless opportunities out there to help others, and in so doing….help yourself.

    by Doc Stickel — January 5, 2020

  8. My wife and I started planning our future retirement while in our mid 20’s. We chose careers and a lifestyle that would facilitate our dreams. We worked our plan, enjoyed our kids, friends and careers. We retired in our early 60’s and look fwd to each day together.


    by gd — January 5, 2020

  9. I have been retired for 6 years and so enjoy not having to wake up at 5 every morning. Enjoy not having to deali with stress and filling a sales quota. Enjoy being able to do what i want to do when i want to do it. Since day one have never regretted not working so I guess. I don’t quite understand people who don’t need the extra money and need to continue working until their 70s. Health issues can pop up at any time so I plan on enjoying my retirement as long as I can…

    by Mary11 — January 5, 2020

  10. Getting a nice response so far to our happiness survey – about 350 people. If you haven’t yet taken it, please do so we get the most representative group of Members. Whether you’re happy or not so much… we need to hear from you! We promise a full report on the state of happiness and what might lead to it.

    by Admin — January 5, 2020

  11. Mary 11, maybe you don’t understand because you never really liked the career you were in. It took me till I was in my mid 30’s to find what I loved. I worked in research and development of foods. It was an area where we could be creative and were expected to pull our weight. It was fun working with teams developing new ideas, new methods, new equipment. Some days could be dull but other days could be exhilarating. On top of working at my home base, I travelled for the company. I also met many people from around the world. I even met some famous chefs. I didn’t retire as I would have liked, but was offered a very, very generous package when the company decided to reorganize and move to another state. Over the years I was given promotions and rewarded for my hard work as were others. Another thing that made my job great was that we had a great team of people and it was rare for anyone to quit. It was almost like family.

    So my point is, not everyone has had a job that when you leave it you are dancing on the moon. I know what it is like to have a miserable job. I have had some over the years before and after my R&D career. Retirement is just another phase of life. Just like a job, some people love it and some people hate it and some just endure it. Some work till they die. Most of us just don’t prepare for retirement or sudden loss of a job and that is where the trouble can begin. All of a sudden we have 24 hours a day to fill. Some are good at it, some are not.

    Seems we have education for how to save money, how to invest money, where to retire, when to draw social security but we don’t really have adult education classes on Retirement, what will you do when the paychecks stop? How will you fill your hours. Retirement education should start early in life to keep people on track to get them on the road to a happy retirement. For some, it is like travelling on the road to OZ, you just don’t know what you will run into until you get there.

    by Louise — January 6, 2020

  12. Answering your open ended questions on an iPhone proved extremely difficult because I could not easily scroll back to review and edit what I had written, which was very frustrating. Thus, I did not answer your last question about any wisdom I would like to pass on and I am concerned that my previous answer was garbled. I would urge you to contact the survey company to remedy that problem.

    Editor comment: Sorry you had trouble. Computers are better for those kind of surveys, unfortunately. But if you would like to pass along your wisdom on last question here, would love to hear it!

    by Dave — January 6, 2020

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