Weekend Reading: Want a Happy Retirement? Have At Least This Many Hobbies

This article appears as part of Casey Weade's Weekend Reading for Retirees series. Every Friday, Casey highlights four hand-picked articles on trending retirement topics and delivers them straight to your email inbox. Get on the list here.
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Weekend Reading

You inevitably have several activities or subjects that spark your interest, but when it comes to a fulfilling retirement, just how many hobbies do you really need? According to this article, 3.6 is the magic number. Read the article from Market Watch below.


Pinpoint your passion: The author references these items as your “core pursuits,” and they aren’t meant to be simple pastimes. These are endeavors you feel passionate about. You dedicate energy to them, and in some instances, they can also turn into a form of income. A study referenced here even shows any extra dollars might help elevate your level of happiness.

Does money = happiness? An investment adviser generated a study of 1,350 retirees across the country and found that individuals with a median liquid net worth of $100,000 claimed to be unhappy, but as the number increased to $500,000, so did the overall level of life satisfaction. The key takeaway is to pay attention to the word “median,” and bearing in mind that the very high net worth individuals can easily skew this type of data. While extra money doesn’t hurt, it’s not the end-all determinant.

In addition to having several hobbies, the study also found that “happy retirees” take around 2.4 vacations per year, while “unhappy retirees” take 1.5. What might that vacation look like for you? It doesn’t have to be expensive, because just as with your core pursuits, the benefits stem mostly from your mindset.

Bottom line: Boredom leads to discontent. While this is relative to everyone’s individual situation, it’s helpful to have some benchmarks to lean into and plan for prior to retirement.