Of course, we all look forward to our retirement; after 40 years of hard work, we can live out the rest of our lives, doing the things we always dreamed of. For the first responder, retirement can be a difficult adjustment, as you put so much of yourself into the job and that adrenalin rush you get when the emergency alarm is raised, is hard to replace.
Here are a few tips to help you with the transition from front-line worker to retirement.
- Maintain a Positive Attitude – It is important to view your retirement as the best years of your life and after more than 40 years of putting your life on the line, you’ve earned your golden years. Join the First Responder Retirement Academy where you can receive advice from colleagues who have been through their own retirement and it is comforting to share your feelings with other first responders.
- Indulge in your Passion – Whether its golf, fishing or restoring that old sports car, it is vital to find something that you love, which will help you to direct strange emotions and there’s no better way to enjoy your retirement than doing what you love. If you can’t think of anything off-hand, spend some time thinking about an activity that you’d like to try; brewing your own beer would certainly be a challenge, or perhaps it’s time to learn how to play the guitar.
- Stay in Touch with Former Colleagues – We’re not trying to wipe out our history and it is important to stay in touch with friends we made during our career. Some may have retired as you, while others are still working and you can offer valuable advice that will help them become better at what they do.
- Try your Hand at a Part Time Position – If you are fit and able, think about a way of making some extra money (we could all do with that) and supplement your income. Doing odd jobs for those in the local community is one way of staying active and if you are handy around the house, you might be very busy.
- Socialise – Make a point of searching online for long-lost friends and take the time to visit those you know. Of course, call first and make sure the trip is convenient and make a point of paying at least one friend a visit every week.
There are online organisations that are dedicated to helping first responders through their retirement and they can be found with a Google search.