Here's part 3 of a series from US News and World Report that gives seven reasons you shouldn't retire. Today's reason:
Their summary of this issue:
You'd think that retiring would make you healthier. Finally you can leave all the stress of the working world behind. Think again. Complete retirement leads to an 11 percent decline in mental health, an 8 percent increase in illness, and a 23 percent increase in difficulty performing daily activities over a six-year period, according to Dhaval Dave of the National Bureau of Economic Research and Bentley College. Of course, there's a quick fix for this: Keep working. "The declines in health are much lower and in some cases nonexistent for those that continue to work part time," Dave says.
This is a story that Britton Chance, 93, knows well. He bikes three quarters of a mile to the University of Pennsylvania for work each day and has never thought much about retirement. A professor emeritus of biochemistry and biophysics, Chance says, "Most of the people who work on cognitive deficits realize that it's better to use it than to lose it." And as he continues to supervise and furnish ideas for medical research, write reports, apply for funds, and attend seminars where he keeps up to date on the latest findings, Chance is not just providing a service to medical science but contributing to his own longevity.
The Alzheimer's Association identifies four major components to staying healthy later in life: mental stimulation, physical activity, social connectedness, and a healthful diet. Working or staying otherwise active and engaged is one good way to make the first three happen, especially if your job gets you off the couch--talking to people and learning new things. "It's important to challenge yourself and to constantly try to better yourself, and for lots of people, that's what staving off retirement can do," says Elizabeth Edgerly of the Alzheimer's Association.
I've covered this issue several times before and the evidence seems clear -- working longer keeps you more fit physically and mentally and leads to a longer, happier, more productive life. This is the main reason I hope to never retire. Instead, I'm planning on shifting my work time to interests, hobbies, and charitable work when I "retire."
For more on this issue from Free Money Finance, see these posts: