Finding Joy in Retirement


By Angela Kauffman, Snyder Village

Finally deciding to retire from the work force can be one of the biggest and most impactful decisions a person can make during their lifetime. This major life change can uncover a host of emotions and can cause moments of reflection on what is really important in life. Retirement can suddenly give you the luxury of time, but it often becomes apparent that the gift of time is precious. As people reflect on their lives, they realize the importance of saying no to activities they don’t really want to do and instead focus on what gives them joy and satisfaction.

Retirement can give you the freedom to focus on what you love to do. Many retirees use the time to take up old hobbies that got pushed to the wayside during their working years. Time can be spent once again doing activities like traveling, golfing, gardening, and quilting. Or maybe you love to learn and want to use your newly acquired free time to learn a new skill or hobby. It’s never too late to write that book you’ve always wanted to or learn a musical instrument you’ve always wished you had.

The more you realize how precious time is, the less you want to spend that precious time doing tasks like home maintenance and upkeep. Moving to a retirement community like Snyder Village removes the burdens of home upkeep off your plate. The Snyder Village Retirement Community offers independent living in its 40 apartments and 170 cottages. The 40+ acre campus offers walking paths, scenic country views, and even two lakes primed for fishing. Any needed repairs inside or outside of the home are taken care of for you, as well as the mowing and snow shoveling. This maintenance-free living frees you up with time to spend doing the hobbies you enjoy, traveling to new or familiar spots, or being with the people you love. 

John Call, a resident in the Snyder Village Retirement Community, spends his free time doing a hobby he’s long enjoyed—gardening. One of the courtyards of the retirement community is full of beautiful, blooming flowers and plants thanks to John’s tender care. “I first came to Snyder Village because it already felt like home,” says John. “I’m from Metamora and knew a lot of people in the area. I had a cottage in the retirement community for 12 years and had a lot of plantings around it. Now I live in an apartment and take care of the flowers in one of the courtyards. I find gardening relaxing and you can always see the results of your work. Everyone else living here enjoys the results too, so that’s satisfying.”

Along with new and old hobbies, many retirees use their time to focus on building relationships and being with those they love. Spending time with friends, their spouse, and other family members (especially those grandkids!) becomes the priority. These relationships can bring deep fulfillment and satisfaction. Steve Carr, a resident in Snyder Village’s Retirement Community, is using his retirement to build relationships with those around him. He serves as the Chaplain for the Snyder Village campus and loves to minister to the residents and employees. “Jesus is my example…so service is what I do!” says Steve. 

Just like Steve, many retirees look to volunteering as another avenue to find joy in retirement. Helping others brings purpose to your life—something that many retirees may feel is lacking after leaving the workforce. You don’t have to look hard to find a range of volunteer opportunities available. Helping to serve meals to those in need, coaching a sports team, or tutoring a child are volunteer roles that will bring you satisfaction while also making an impact in your local community.

Don’t waste your retirement years doing menial tasks like home maintenance or unsatisfying activities without purpose. Make each day count by filling them with the people you love and the activities that bring you joy. Using your retirement to learn a new skill, travel to a destination you’ve always wanted to visit, or serve people in your community will reward you with an inner joy and gratitude for the days you’ve been given and a retirement well spent.

Snyder Village in Metamora is a Life Plan Community that offers independent living in its retirement cottages and apartments. Beautiful assisted living accommodations, memory care programs, skilled nursing care, and physical therapy are also available on campus. Its home care services support individuals in Peoria, Tazewell, Woodford, and Marshall Counties. For more information, call (309) 367-4300 or visit

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