100+ Ways To Keep Busy and Fight Boredom in Retirement

One of the wonderful things about getting older is finding yourself with more free time. If used correctly, this abundance of free time can be an excellent opportunity to reconnect with loved ones and enjoy hobbies new and old.

That being said, figuring out exactly what to do with your newfound freedom can also be overwhelming. And if you are not creative, you may find yourself bored and struggling to fill the hours of the day.

Fortunately, we have a list of activities that you can try out. Whether you prefer solo activities versus activities with friends and family, or activities from the comfort of your home versus venturing out into the neighborhood, we have you covered.

Beat Boredom with These Activities!

older couple jogging together outsidePhysical Activities

Crafting Activities

  • grandmother knitting with granddaughterMake home-crafted birthday and Christmas cards for your family and friends
  • Organize old pictures into a photo album with descriptions, dates, and colorful decorations
  • Attend a pottery class
  • Purchase some plain plant pots and decorate them
  • Make some new jewelry
  • Paint a pretty scene
  • Knit a scarf
  • Crochet a blanket
  • Embroider a quilt for a loved one

Home Improvement Activities

Activities for Grandparents with Young Grandchildren

  • grandfather spending time with grandchildren playing with bikeTake your grandchildren to the local zoo or aquarium
  • Sign you and your grandchildren up for a child-friendly art class
  • Show them your childhood toys
  • Teach your grandchildren how to cook your favorite childhood dish
  • Take them to a park
  • Watch your favorite childhood movie with your grandchildren
  • Set up a tea party for you and your grandchildren. You can even bake a dessert together beforehand
  • Read them a book
  • Take them for a drive around town 
  • Set up a crafting station for you and your grandchildren to make art and presents for their parents
  • Teach them about your family history
  • Start a new jigsaw puzzle
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Activities for Grandparents with Older Grandchildren

  • grandparents spending time with older grandchildren at homeTake your grandchildren out to your favorite restaurant, or ask your grandchildren to take you to their favorite restaurant
  • Invite your grandchildren over for an afternoon drink
  • Ask your grandchildren to play you their favorite music and discuss which ones you like best
  • Watch your grandchild's favorite TV show with them
  • Go to their sporting events
  • Ask them to prepare a presentation on a topic that interests them
  • Take them on a special trip or vacation with you

Activities On Your Phone

  • older woman smiling at her phone sitting on sofaPlay a brain training game or app on your phone like sudoku 
  • Scroll through your phone list and call the people you have not talked to in a while
  • Catch up on local or world news
  • Surprise your loved ones by sending them a text to tell them all the reasons you love them
  • Build a music playlist to share with your friends 
  • Play a multiplayer phone game with your family and friends
  • Listen to a podcast
  • Take a trip down memory lane. Read the first message you ever received from your closest friends and family
  • Stream a new movie or TV show
  • Listen to an audiobook of your choosing
  • Keep up with friends on social media

Relaxing Activities

Hobby Activities

Outdoor Activities

  • older couple gardening together outsideStart an outdoor garden to grow your favorite herbs or vegetables
  • Install an outdoor flower box and grow one of your favorite flowers
  • Pack a picnic and a book and head for a relaxing afternoon in your local park
  • Go birdwatching
  • Go for a boat ride
  • Cast a line and try to catch some fish
  • Feed the ducks
  • Build a bonfire a make s'mores 

Social Activities

  • older women enjoying a meal together outsideInvite family and friends to play a new board game
  • Attend a play at your local theater
  • Visit your local art galleries
  • Staycation: Act like a tourist in your own town
  • Attend a live music event in your neighborhood
  • Borrow a projector and set up an outdoor or indoor movie night with popcorn, sweet treats, and friends and family
  • Play a game over a video call with friends/family that don't live nearby
  • Volunteer at your local soup kitchen, homeless shelter, or other nonprofit.
    Invite a family member or friend to see a movie with you
  • Invite family and friends over for a candlelight dinner party. If you don't cook, order take-out
  • Plan a fun date night with someone special
  • Get dressed up and arrange a family photoshoot
  • Write to a pen pal
  • Ask your family and friends over for a murder mystery night

Intellectual Activities

  • older man reading at a desk in officeRead a book from a top bestseller list
  • Tutor or mentor the younger generation
  • Get a "jobby" or find a flexible job you love
  • Read facts about an animal for each letter of the alphabet, e.g., Alpaca, Buffalo, Camel
  • Learn a few phrases and words in a foreign language. If you have a neighbor or know a business where the staff speaks the language, visit them to practice!
  • Create your own retirement vision board or bucket list
  • Take a free class online
  • Discover a new blog site to read interesting content
  • Close your eyes and point to a spot on a world map. Next, open your eyes and research interesting facts about the country or city you point to
  • Watch a documentary on a topic you know very little about
  • Go and visit an exhibit at your local art or history museum

Foodie Activities

  • groupe of people eating fresh food in garden settingGo for a meal at a new restaurant in your neighborhood
  • Go out and try a cuisine you have never had before
  • Try to replicate a dish from your favorite foreign cuisine
  • Invite some friends and family over for cooking wars. Create two teams, select five ingredients to make appetizers, mains, and desserts, and nominate one person to judge which team delivers the best dishes
  • Bake a dessert that you can share with neighbors and friends
  • Invent a new recipe using ingredients you usually don't use

Find the Opportunity

It is easy to feel bored and stagnant when you find yourself with a lot of free time and nothing to do to fill it. However, once you start viewing your time as an opportunity and resource to improve your happiness, fitness, explore new hobbies, strengthen your relationships, and delve into new intellectual topics, you will find more fulfillment and excitement throughout your day.

Let us know in the comments below - Did we miss anything? What's your favorite way to stay busy? 

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