As working adults, we all look forward to the day when we can finally hang up our boots and clock out from work once and for all. However, as enticing as retirement may sound, more and more seniors are starting to clock back in to work by taking on part-time jobs. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of seniors who are working after retirement has doubled from 4.3 percent in 1990 to 7.5 percent in 2011.
The reasons why retirees choose to go back to work may vary from person to person. However, one thing’s for certain – the benefits that come from continuing to work are great. Below are some of the top benefits for seniors who return to work after retirement.
Working keeps your mind active
After retirement, there’s usually a considerable drop in the amount of information that your brain is required to process each day. By working after retirement, you are forcing your brain to engage in cognitive activity. This is important for the continued growth of cognitive levels and function. The old adage, “use it or lose it,” is appropriate here.
Working provides valuable social interaction
Social interaction plays a very important role in the overall well being of a person. One downside of retirement can be the drop in social interaction once you leave the working world. In fact, in a study conducted by UCSF, 43% of seniors aged 60+ reported having feelings of loneliness. These feelings, if left untreated, often lead to mental health issues such as depression. Working after retirement, even in a part-time position, can be just what the doctor ordered to help keep you socially active.
Financial security and benefits
With advances in medicine and technology, people today are living longer than ever before. This, combined with the uncertainty of government programs, means that current generations of retirees need to plan for a longer financial future than their predecessors. Working after retirement is a great way to extend your retirement savings and generate the extra income that you need in order to do the things that make you happy.
Doing Something That You Love
Retirement doesn’t mean an end to contributing your gifts and talents. In fact, sometimes it’s just the beginning of something special. Post-retirement can be a great time to take on a job that you’re passionate about, or start your own business. According to the Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity, folks 55 to 64 represented the second-largest jump in entrepreneurial activity by age from 2008-2009.
While working after retirement may not be for everyone, there are certainly several benefits to clocking back into the labor force. Ultimately, the decision comes down to your unique needs and situation. Take time to reflect on the pros and cons of going back to work, and see which options work best for you.