Senior Resources » 7 Essential Wellness Tips for Baby Boomers Nearing Retirement

7 Essential Wellness Tips for Baby Boomers Nearing Retirement

By the year 2030, all Baby Boomers will be age 65 or older. With the impending mass retirement looming over an America already reeling from the economical effects of post-COVID inflation and the war in Ukraine (among other things!), most Boomers and their families are preoccupied with one question: will we have enough to retire comfortably? It’s a reasonable concern. The great retirement is going to cause a huge gap in the workforce and, quite inevitably, more inflation. What’s more, a recent study found that around 27% of Baby Boomers actually have nothing saved for retirement.


Still, economic hardships are just one piece of the retirement puzzle Boomers will face throughout this decade and beyond. Largely overshadowed by fiscal fears, the wellness of our aging population is arguably more vulnerable than ever. A whopping one-fourth of adults ages 65 and over are considered socially isolated, diabetes and heart disease still plague the population, and an astounding 1 in 3 seniors fall each year (1 in 5 resulting in serious injuries).

About 10,000 Baby Boomers turn 65 each month. Let’s get proactive and discuss some essential wellness tips for those who are nearing retirement.


1. Social Wellness

group of senior friends

Social wellness is the ability to make and maintain meaningful personal connections as well as having a genuine sense of belonging. Something you may not have fully realized in your earlier years is that our careers tend to largely contribute to our social wellness. But, it makes sense – 40 hours or more every week for a big chunk of our lives is spent interacting with coworkers, clients, and more. So, what happens when we retire? Is all of that just…done?

Not necessarily. That is, if you continue making it a point to keep in touch with friends, neighbors, family, and yes, former coworkers.

It may feel easier said than done – so, here are a few ideas to stay social:

  • Set aside time every week devoted to calling friends and/or family.
  • Make an effort to keep in touch with supportive friends, family, and mentors.
  • Join a club or an organization. Participating in group discussions and practicing active listening can open your mind’s door as well as your heart’s.
  • Get out and volunteer. Do this with friends or go alone to make new connections with people who share the same interests and are dedicated to similar convictions.

2. Emotional Wellness

happy senior

Retiring is a major life change, and along with the benefits, for some retirees, it can also bring about anxiety, stress, or even depression. Instead of feeling relaxed and fulfilled, one might feel bored or have a loss of self-confidence. Many retirees grieve the loss of their old life or simply find it hard to get themselves into a new groove.


Whether you’re already retired and struggling with the changes or nearing retirement and feeling anxious about it all, there are healthy ways you can adjust:

  • Keep yourself on a schedule. Believe it or not, routines are essential to emotional and physical wellness. Keeping yourself on a schedule helps reduce stress and supports strong cognitive sharpness. It can also help you sleep better at night.
  • Nurture a positive attitude to help yourself experience fewer negative emotions and foster healthier emotional relationships. Try beginning the day by writing down one thing you’re grateful for or looking forward to. Then end the day by writing down something positive that happened.
  • Acknowledge your emotions. Acknowledging your emotions and sharing them with your partner are big first steps to accepting them and moving forward when you’re experiencing a low.

3. Spiritual Wellness

senior woman listening to earbuds, blurred background

Fostering spiritual wellness means connecting inside and out with your beliefs and values and leading a purpose-driven life. For many, this begins with their faith in God or a higher power. For some, it’s achieving self-transcendence through humility and connecting to that which is greater than oneself. If you’re nearing retirement and finding yourself asking the question, what’s the point of all this?, then here are a few suggestions to boost your spiritual health:

  • Reach out to our church. Your pastor or priest is likely a good listener and would be more than willing to help you on your spiritual journey no matter where your faith currently lies. Also, congregation members are the perfect recruits for a support system.
  • Spend time with yourself doing things that you enjoy. This can bring you a sense of purpose and help you focus on prayer or meditation.
  • Volunteering is a positive way to connect to something larger than yourself while giving back to your community. Boomers who volunteer usually feel a great sense of self-worth and purpose.
  • Keep a journal to reflect on all aspects of your life and faith.
  • Speak to a counselor or therapist.

4. Occupational Wellness

Think for a moment about how you’ve always introduced yourself. It probably sounded something like:

“I’m Joe and I’m an architect.”

Okay, maybe not quite in such a robotic way, but you get the point. The fact of the matter is that on average, 90,000 hours of our lives are spent at work. That means that what we do inevitably becomes a really large part of who we are and how we perceive ourselves. Those thought processes don’t just shut off when retirement rolls around. There is a great deal of personal gratification and enrichment ensued from our work lives and as creatures of habit, we still crave those feelings whether we’re 36, 65, or 95! Here are a couple of ways to foster a work-life-balance when you are no longer working:

  • Consider your succession before you take the retirement plunge. It’s reasonable to assume that you’ve spent most of your life building skills and expertise that are invaluable. You might even own your own business. One thing you really don’t want is for your life’s work to disappear the moment you step out of the office, right? In the years leading up to your retirement you should consider how to pass on your knowledge, and/or find the next leader for your business.
  • Mentoring a child, grandchild, friend, or potential successor satisfies your instinct to pass on knowledge. Becoming a freelance consultant is a similar way to do this. Both keep you involved and feeling a sense of contribution.

5. Intellectual Wellness

senior man reading on the couch

Learning and creating should be a lifelong journey. Finding ways to expand knowledge and stay creative are absolutely imperative for mental health. Did you know that learning keeps your brain cells working at optimum levels? According to recent research, continuing to learn new things may actually slow cognitive and memory decline in aging adults. Here are some ways to support your intellectual health and wellness throughout retirement:

  • Enroll in an adult or senior education class.
  • Join a book club (or any type of club, really) to engage in meaningful conversations.
  • Take time to learn new hobbies.
  • Use technology to expand your perspective. Listening to podcasts is an easy and free way to stay in-the-know!

6. Physical Wellness

close up of a woman exercising with a dumbell

It’s no secret that enjoying nutritious meals is important; a good variety of foods in your diet will help reduce the risk of heart disease and other chronic illnesses. And, these days we know mental health is just as important as eating right and exercising. But, sometimes these healthy choices aren’t the easiest or most convenient. Even so, physical wellness remains vital to maintain. How can you age healthily? Here are a couple of tips that you can start working into your routines today:

  • Move more. Try simply walking around the house or doing chair exercises. The truth is, there’s a little something that everyone can do to get moving. If you’re not sure where to start, your primary doctor is a good brain to pick!
  • Exercise at home with videos like Senior Fitness with Meredith’s. Meredith gears all of her exercises toward older adults and her YouTube and social media community is filled with encouragement and help for all. (Senior Fitness with Meredith is also on our podcast network!)
  • Try fruit for dessert and add more protein to your diet! Did you know that once you hit 30, you start losing as much as 5 percent of muscle mass each decade?

7. Environmental Wellness

stacked stones

Clean air and safe drinking water are important to human health. But – that’s not exactly the type of environmental wellness we’re talking about here. Did you know that your personal environment has an effect on your overall mood and behaviors? A clean and positive space for living, working, and playing can reduce stress and promote healthy habits. A few examples Boomers can follow to create and maintain environmental wellness are:

  • Keep your home tidy. If all your stuff is put away, you’re more likely to be motivated to clean up after each new mess.
  • Make your home inviting and comfortable. It’ll keep you feeling pleasant while encouraging visitors to sit and chat.
  • Research has revealed that rooms with bright light, both natural and artificial, can influence your mood. Bright light actually improves depression and anxiety.

Need Something Else?

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Try Out a Podcast for Boomers & Beyond!

The Senior Resource Podcast Network produces podcasts on the most important topics in retirement and 55+ lifestyle today, including Medicare, senior housing, aging in place, caregiving, and more! Hosts often feature vetted professionals, share tips and tricks, and inspire and challenge listeners to lead thoughtful empowered lives.

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Originally published December 18, 2023


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