Retirement age is in flux. Older adults are in good health and have a longer prognosis of survival than a few years ago. Some are delaying retirement. Some are taking part-time jobs, some are self-employed and others are using skills learned in earlier jobs to retrain themselves.
Benefits from work activate the brain and expand social networks. Continuing to work keeps older people mentally and physically active. Some people stay at home initially and then feel disillusioned and bored. The author found that these negative results didn’t change with different educational and occupational backgrounds although most gains were found largely to women and older people with post-secondary education. Volunteer workers got physical benefits and cognitive gains from interacting with children.
Work provides a routine and purpose, a social environment and a sense of community. This article presents testimony from people who have stayed working and benefited from income, engagement and social connections.
HENRI MATISSE, renowned French painter
Henri Matisse at age 77-82 designed the Vence chapel on the French Riviera (1949-1951). When not working from bed, he stood on suitcases and boxes in the chapel as he completed it. Many regard it as one of the great religious structures of the 20th century.