Consumer Reports on Health had an article related to my last blog's topic. CR pointed out that retirement has greatly changed, because so many people live longer lives.
CR cites research that good health and meaningful lives go hand in hand. The most satisfied retirees in one study were 1.5 times more likely than others to be doing things like volunteering and working. This engagement seems to improve emotional and physical health, according to another study. It even keeps the mind sharper - improving cognitive functioning.
Many opportunities exist for productive use of time in the "retirement years," including including continuing education, paid work, and community service. CR lists 18 web sites as sources of information, such as Civic Ventures, Retired Brains, Habitat for Humanity, National Retiree Volunteer Coalition, and Senior Corps. And, don't forget that the Peace Corps is not just for people in their twenties. Older volunteers make up a sizeable proportion of that important organization!