Having retired a few years ago caused my husband and me to look around at all the friends we had enjoyed over the years. Often miles separate us and while it is important to keep up with them, it isn’t easy to call up a long distance friend and invite them to meet us for lunch. So in light of our dilemma it might be a good idea to share with you some ideas we had for finding new friends.
- Being a writer, I joined local a writers group. Only a few of us have aspirations of becoming a great novelist, but we have been known to share a few laughs, each other’s lives, and stories about our grandchildren. As well as great stories about how we were rejected by a publisher. Then comes the celebration parties where we meet the spouses of those in the group, thus broadening our friendships.
- As for women, there are quilting clubs If you share a love for sewing, and especially making colorful quilts, whether to sell or show at the county fair, there is a group of women who would love to have you join them with your ideas.
- Men enjoy having a cup of coffee, or breakfast even at McDonalds with a group of guys. Why not ask men you hardly know at your church, or even friends you’ve been known to socialize with on occasion and invite them to Denny’s or Waffle House, or yes McDonalds. Start a new club and call it the “Old Geezers Coffee Club” or something better of your own choosing.
- What about volunteering? Whether at Habitat for Humanity, or the Hospital, volunteers are needed. There is nothing like the feeling of being needed especially when punching the clock is a thing of the past. Not only are friendships made with other volunteers, but also people we might never know otherwise
- For those who have retired from the corporate business world, there are opportunities to use your business influences for raising money for worthwhile causes. Be it Cancer research, shelters for battered women and children, or Soup kitchens where our minds seem to gravitate this time of year.
- This falls in line with volunteerism but one thing I have found very rewarding is the “Meals on Wheels” program for home bound seniors. There are opportunities to know others who volunteer as well.
- I truly don’t understand the hang up on this one, but many retirees find it difficult to visit the “Senior Center” of their community. Trusting that is, that most retirees are the senior age. “Don’t want to be hanging around those old folks” could be the sentiment. However let me quickly add, this is a wonderful place to meet men and women who are willing to listen and even share their war stories of life. There are socials planned for seniors that include Dancing, card playing, pool and the list goes on.
- This should have been listed first, forgive me. GET OUT OF THE HOUSE! Don’t become a couch potato and an expert with the remote control. Go walking at the local track. Join a health club. Now-a-days Supplemental insurance policies have the “silver-sneaker” program that wants you to join a fitness center. So there – almost instant socialization that leads to new friends.
- Have a party – invite the neighbors. Perhaps you have been too busy to know the neighbors up to now. Why not have a back-yard-barbeque and have a casual get-to-gather. Nothing like making friends over a plate of barbeque or a hamburger.
- Then now, there is a golden opportunity to get the degree you wanted, or take a class on something you always wanted to do as a hobby, and never had time. There may be a woodworking class at Home Depot, a monogram class, a scrapbooking class, or how to play pinochle class – the ideas are endless. By signing up with a class, there are sure to be others of the same likes taking the same class. Again – instant friendship potential.
What would life be without friends? People, who close themselves off from the world, surely live a lonely life and for sure die a lonely old soul before their time.
Guest Post By: Doris T.