Your kids have moved out of the house and are beginning a new chapter of their life, leaving you to wonder what’s next for yourself and what your next chapter will look like. The past 18 years have centered completely around other people and you may have forgotten what it means to have time for yourself.
Here is a list of 10 fun activities to spark your creativity and help you rediscover your interests and passions:
If you enjoyed the sense of community gained from volunteering at your children’s schools, then look for a new non-profit community to devote your time and energy to.
2. Ramp up your date nights
No longer do you need to plan your date nights around play practice, piano lessons, and football practice. Want to go out for dinner and a movie Wednesday night, and antiquing Friday night? You are now free to do so.
3. Sign up for a class
Many cities and towns offer community classes that are perfect for diving into that hobby you never had time for. From classes around gardening, creating flower arrangements, painting, pottery, or even dancing, there is bound to be something that piques your interest. Community calendars are a great place to start when seeking out classes.
Now that you don’t have to plan your vacations strictly for the summer or spring break, you can take advantage of off-season deals and plan those winter getaways that you’ve always dreamed of.
5. Reacquaint yourself with your community
A lot has changed within your community since you became a parent. New stores have emerged, cute and trendy coffee shops/cafes have popped up, and an array of businesses have opened. Now is the perfect time to explore those new businesses and discover new favorite places within your own community.
6. Start a book club
You finally have the time to dive into that reading list you’ve been curating over the years. And you’re not alone! There are plenty of other empty nesters who are dusting off their reading list and looking for people to share their favorite books with. This is the perfect opportunity to start a book club and expand your social circle.
Chances are you have a couple of spare rooms now that your nest is empty. Now you can exercise those creative interior design urges you’ve had over the years. Experiment with new paint schemes or create the reading room or yoga studio you’ve always wanted.
8. Adopt a pet
So you’re loving all of your newfound free time, but the house is just a little too quiet and you miss feeling needed. This could be a good opportunity to adopt a pet. Pets provide great companionship and will bring the noise and element of surprise that you’ve missed.
9. Consider babysitting
There’s a lot said about spending time on yourself as an empty nester, but what if you love kids and consider your love for them to be a major part of who you are? That is completely ok. Babysitting or opening a daycare is a wonderful option for the empty nester who longs to have children in their lives.
10. Make a dream list
Make a list of things you’ve always wanted to do, but didn’t get to do while you were raising your kid. Maybe it’s learning a foreign language or learning to play a musical instrument. You are never too old to learn. Make sure whatever you pick is something that interests you, and don’t be afraid to dream big!