Balance your side hustle with your well-being in retirement, a guide for retirees in the United States

Balance your side hustle with your well-being in retirement

by | Jun 2, 2023

A guide for retirees in the United States

With the state of the world today, it’s no shock that roughly 1 in 6 retired Americans are considering going back to work or picking up their own side hustle – according to a recent study from Paychex – with 55% of retirees returning due to a need for income. 

We’re all for earning money in retirement, but we’ve heard a lot of retirees say the same thing. “I have no energy already, how am I supposed to pick up a side hustle?” 

It makes the idea of stepping back into the working world one of great fear and uncertainty, especially in the years that well-being is of utmost importance. 

However, it can be done with a bit of care and intention. 

If you’re considering picking up your own side-hustle or returning to work, it’s super important to find a healthy balance that allows you to maintain your well-being through your work. We’ve developed this guide for retirees, with tips and strategies to find that balance and avoid burnout. 

Assessing your physical and mental well-being

Before you step into your side hustle, it’s important for retirees to take stock of their current physical and mental well-being. 

Consider factors such as your current energy levels, stress tolerance, and current time commitments. These can be crucial in planning the kind of side hustle that’ll give to your life, not just take so much that you’re left burned out and unable to do anything. 

It’s a good idea to have a chat with your healthcare professionals to ensure you’re capable of supporting a side hustle alongside your current well-being. They may have tips and recommendations of their own and can aid you in making an informed decision. 

For example: some retirees find that they’re more active and engaged in the early hours of the morning. Consider opting for a side hustle that allows you to maximize these hours of the day, but won’t bleed into the times your body starts to slow down for the day. 

Identify the right side hustle for you 

Once you’ve taken stock of your current well-being, it’s important to look into the kind of side hustles that work for you.

When finding the side hustle for you, it's important to factor in what actually works - that's more than just a dream but can be a reality too

For example, if you want to travel through retirement and don’t plan on having your feet in one place too long? Find a side hustle that enables remote work. This can also be handy for most retirees, as it means they’re able to save energy and time by working from home, so they can make the most of their productivity. 

Luckily, there are many professions today that allow remote work, such as being a Facebook Ad Manager, proofreading, or selling handmade products online

If you have grandkids that keep your schedule busy? Opt for a side hustle that gives you flexibility. If you can’t afford to stand much in the day? Focus on a side hustle that’s tech-based, meaning you never have to leave your seat. 

We have a unique collection of blogs focusing on the many different side hustle opportunities in retirement. Explore them all here to help gain some insight into the kinds of variation available today. 

You’re sure to find “just the thing” that will suit your skills and resources.

Setting realistic goals and expectations 

The best thing you can do when planning for a side hustle in retirement that allows you to keep a hold of your well-being is to set realistic goals and expectations, both financially and personally.

To balance your side hustle with your well-being, be sure to sit down and figure out realistic goals and expectations to manage

Think clearly about the time and effort required to achieve your desired outcome for your side hustle. It’ll help you plan the kind of expectations you can have for yourself, and tailor your hustle toward your needs. 

It’s about being aware that well-being requires a healthy work-life balance. Which means it may take longer for you to reach the kind of success that others with more resources may reach quickly. But that doesn’t mean your progress doesn’t count. If you can plan for a slow, steady and stable growth, you’ll have no trouble finding real success for yourself. 

Keep in mind: your well-being is always going to be more important than money. Don’t ever push yourself too hard. 

Time management strategies 

To balance your side hustle with your well-being in retirement, it can be really helpful to focus on your time management skills.

Create a schedule if possible, start prioritizing your tasks and, most importantly, set clear boundaries about what times you plan to be available to work and which times you are strictly unavailable. Don’t shame yourself for needing a night off if you’ve worked three days in a row – needs are different for everyone and, in order to get the best from your work, rest is important in maximizing your output long term. 

Here's a few time management strategies to help you balance your side hustle with your well-being

Allocate dedicated time for relaxation, hobbies, and social activities, to provide the work-life balance ideal for well-being. 

Taking care of your physical and mental health alongside a side hustle in retirement 

Once you’ve set up your side hustle, it’s important to ensure you’re constantly maintaining both your physical and mental health needs to keep your well-being in its prime. 

There’s a number of ways to achieve this – we’ve even got an entire blog titled How to stay well + active in your 50s and up that covers everything you need to know – but here’s a few tips to easily maintain your well-being:

  • Participate in physical activity regularly, even if this is just stretching once a day. 
  • Ensure you’re eating a balanced diet, supplementing nutrients where necessary
  • Get sufficient rest! 
  • Follow mindfulness practices where possible
  • Seek professional help in the form of both doctors and therapists, where possible, to ensure you’re staying on-track toward health and well-being
  • Have a good network, whether friends or family, that you can turn to for additional support

And, don’t forget, things will change as you go. Be sure to follow self-care practices, including regular self check-ins to see how you’re going. You’re allowed to alter what you’re doing if it’s not working right – in fact, it’ll make a real difference to the longevity of your success!

When it comes to setting up a side hustle in retirement, it’s crucial to find a healthy balance that’ll support your overall well-being. 

While this fear holds many retirees back, it is possible to prioritize well-being through this process, as long as you have the right mindset and strategies. 

It’s best to approach this new leap with intention, self-awareness and self-care, regularly checking in with yourself on what’s realistic and what’s not.

By following the tips and strategies outlined in this post, you can successfully balance your side hustle with your well-being, ensuring a fulfilling and sustainable retirement journey that actually works for you. 

Because retirement really doesn’t have to be the end of better living. 
For more information on how to earn money in retirement, explore our full range of articles and how-to’s here.