Spirituality and Religion
It may be a generational thing, or it may be simply a stage of life, but there is a growing body of evidence that says older people incorporate more spirituality in their lives than younger people do. Spirituality is not the same thing as religion. For some it resides in a relationship with nature, others with a connection to some kind of spiritual entity or a general life force that connects everyone on the planet. Aging brings with it more time to reflect on all aspects of life.
Most people, by the time they have reached their fifties, have experienced loss of someone close or something important to them. Older adults have more and more added to their loss roster, including:
Death of a parent, spouse, or other relative
Physical abilities slowly slipping
Grown children living far away
Loss of friends through death or dementia
These all raise questions of Why are we here? Where are we going — if anywhere? Once the constant activity of a hard-charging career and raising a family recedes, it is natural to spend more time looking inward and reflecting on the big questions. Seeking support from other like-minded individuals can help process some of these questions, even if fully satisfactory answers remain elusive. Spiritual advisors can be good sounding boards and provide perspective worth considering. No matter what approach you find most comforting, it is essential that you take the time to get to know yourself, and in doing so, prepare emotionally for the transitions that retirement will bring.