Happiness for Empty Nesters

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Here is a quick list that empty-nesters can review for themselves as a way to bring happiness when adjusting to an empty nest.

1. Have someone to talk with who is in or has been in the empty nest.

2. Make a plan to get out of the house, like going to a bookstore and joining a book club. Perhaps learn to play bridge, or join a full moon hiking group.

3. Exercise.

4. Stay away from the cell phone and emailing your children too much. Ask yourself, do I really need to do this?

5. Have something to look forward to like making that call.

6. Take an extension class, or a local class.

7. Tour of your city with a tour group as if you were new to town.

8. Spend time with nieces, nephews, and cousins that you didn’t have time for before.

9. Go ahead and cry. If the tears are stuck, watch a sad movie and the tears will surely come.

10. Grieving isn’t a one time deal, slow your expectations of getting over your empty nest.

11. Be aware that other loses will arise, get involved in support groups, therapy, etc.

12. Write yourself a letter about what a wonderful parent you are.

13. Post inspiring quotations by your computer and bathroom.

14. Have friends over and ask them to bring their five favorite CDs for an evening to dance and eat and share.

15. Make time to be with yourself outside.

16. Buy a bike.                                                

17. De-clutter every room and don’t buy more.

18. Research a special place to be with yourself … by a lake, mountain, ocean, desert and spend time there. Who knows, you may potentially move there one day.

19. Make time for spiritual practices.

20. Give yourself permission to change your mind.

Write a two-day plan so it will help you get up, get going, and meet new people.

Research shows that change takes about a month, so be gentle with yourself … just as you would tell your children to be with themselves.

Related Story: My Daughter is in Love


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