ACA Counseling Corner Blog Logo
ACA Counseling Corner Blog

We all face daily challenges in today's complicated and demanding world. ACA’s Counseling Corner Blog offers thoughtful ideas, suggestions, and strategies for helping you to live a happier and healthier life.

Columns can be reprinted in full or in part with attribution to the American Counseling Association’s Counseling Corner Blog.


Apr 03, 2017

Retirement Need Not Mean A Loss Of Identity

Yes, many those questions have to do with financial issues related to savings, Social Security and future health care concerns and costs. 

The financial questions of retirement are certainly important, but there are also additional retirement issues that have to be faced.  These include basic questions that have to do with being able to handle the psychological aspects of no longer being part of the work force.

We live in a society that places a great deal of value on "doing" things.  We've been taught to be busy, productive citizens, and, for many of us, our lives revolve around that thing we "do" for a living. We're known to others as a lawyer, or teacher, or accountant, or whatever career we've been working in.  Then, suddenly, one day we no longer hold that title but are simply "retired." We've lost that identity of being a "doer" and, unfortunately, many of us judge people who are not "doing" things as being of less value.

That's why someone who is facing retirement will often be asked, "What are you going to do?"  It seems an innocent query but carries with it the implication that now that the defining job will be gone, what can there possibly be of value in the person's life.

For someone approaching retirement it's necessary to accept that he or she is heading into a new life stage with different meanings and a new status.  It requires understanding that there are many changes to be faced and many questions, a lot more important than, "What are you going to do?" to be answered.

If retirement is near or recent, take the time to really evaluate how it is going to affect you, not just financially but in all aspects of your life. 

You might want to check out some of the many books now available with suggestions for better handling the challenges retirement can bring. 

But if retirement does seem like a large and overwhelming black hole in your future, try making an appointment with a professional counselor in your area who can help you work through the issues you are facing.

Contact Name

Contact Title

Contact Email

Contact Phone

Related Info

1 Comment

  1. 1 Marilyn Becoat Royal 07 Apr
    Retirement Woes, Challenges and Achievements

    I was confronted with many questions last year when I retired in June 2016 as a School Guidance Counselor.   The main questions posed to me were "What are you going to do?"    "Where are you going to work next?"   I was shocked that there were not a lot of congratulations and hoorays at this time in my life.  People actually expected me to return to work.   It was as if, you have achieved that you did well enough in your career; but. now return and do it all over again.   That was easier said than done.   So, the challenge every day now is "what are you going to do today?"    The finances now are fine with the retirement monies. But, what about a year or two, five years from now?    Believe it or not, finances are not my biggest challenge.   My biggest challenge is feelings of doing worthwhile things like I did before in my career.    I do like having retired and having achieved.   I will continue to focus on doing good and making a difference in the lives of others.   The counseling career field has been rewarding and is useful as a lifetime career.           


  1. RadEditor - HTML WYSIWYG Editor. MS Word-like content editing experience thanks to a rich set of formatting tools, dropdowns, dialogs, system modules and built-in spell-check.
    RadEditor's components - toolbar, content area, modes and modules
    Toolbar's wrapper 
    Content area wrapper
    RadEditor's bottom area: Design, Html and Preview modes, Statistics module and resize handle.
    It contains RadEditor's Modes/views (HTML, Design and Preview), Statistics and Resizer
    Editor Mode buttonsStatistics moduleEditor resizer
    RadEditor's Modules - special tools used to provide extra information such as Tag Inspector, Real Time HTML Viewer, Tag Properties and other.

Join/Renew NOW!

Subscribe to this blog