After a quarter century of focusing on what happens inside the four walls of your home, it's time to embrace the world outside. Here are a few tips to consider:
- Explore. Whether it's a weekend escape or a month-long adventure, travel is a terrific outlet, both solo and with your partner. What better reason to buy that zippy little sports car you've always dreamed of? Visit siblings and friends, and re-energize those relationships.
- Reconnect with work. Or start a second career, or even a new business venture. You've earned the right to be more selective at this stage of your life. The talents required to successfully run a house full of kids aren't all that different from managing a business. Don't underestimate how those skills translate to the workplace, if that's where you want to take them. One caveat: Beware of allowing work to become all-consuming. Don't let your job become an excuse to ignore your partner [source: Schmitz].
- Go back to school. Researchers agree that the more engaged we are mentally, the better our overall health. While online classes are fine, they don't bring the same sense of community as attending a class at your local community college or adult education center. You can go for something more cerebral, such as nutrition or medieval history or astrology, or something that's just for fun, like a dance class or scrapbooking.
Family dynamics can be complicated, and so is the impact of children leaving home. For more information, keep reading.