A Solo Senior's Guide to Happiness

S.F. Ehrlich Associates |

November 15, 2018

MONEY Magazine recently had an article1 on the “growing number of people (who) are facing retirement by themselves.” Please click through to find a few tips on how to “live life to the fullest when it’s a party of one.”

  • Establish a Buddy System - “If you don’t have people to call on, it might be time to rethink your living situation…Looking for opportunities to connect in your community is key. Whether it’s a weekly worship service, a bridge game at a senior center, or volunteering at a soup kitchen, find an activity you like and show up regularly so people will notice when you’re not there…Also, help community members before you require help yourself.”
  • Seek Safeguards - Be certain you have updated healthcare and legal documents, such as a health care power of attorney and a living will. And if you’re a solo senior, “…carry a laminated card in (your) wallet listing the name and phone number of (your) primary care physician, along with all (your) current medications and dosages.”
  • Fine-Tune Your Finances - As with updated healthcare documents, be certain “…to give someone financial power of attorney to handle your money matters if you’re no longer able to do so yourself.” You can also pay for a monitoring service (e.g., EverSafe) to “monitor your bank and credit card accounts for irregular activity and alert a trusted person if fraud is suspected.” And if you’re a solo, consider purchasing long-term care insurance, so you can afford in-home assistance and/or a health-care facility should one be required.

“Perhaps most important, successful solo aging may require a mind shift for some people,” says Ann Glass, a gerontology professor at the University of North Carolina, Wilmington. “In our society, we tend to put so much value on being independent….I would argue that you’re better off being inter-dependent, especially as you get older.”




1 O’Brien, Elizabeth. “A Solo Senior’s Guide to Happiness.” Money, Nov. 2018.
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