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J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci. 1997 May;52(3):P110-7.

The retirement adjustment process: changes in the well-being of male retirees across time.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Western Ontario.


The purpose of this prospective study was to (1) evaluate the impact of retirement, (2) monitor the change in adjustment across time, and (3) identify the resources predictive of short- and long-term adjustment in retirement. A sample of 117 male retirees was assessed on indices of physical and psychological health, perceived control, retirement satisfaction, and life satisfaction at 2-4 months preretirement, 1 year post-, and 6-7 years postretirement. The results provided support for a positive impact of retirement, as retirees evidenced increases in well-being during the first year. There was also evidence of a retirement adjustment process, in that aspects of well-being (i.e., psychological health) changed from short- to long-term retirement. Finally, physical health, income, and voluntary retirement status predicted short-term adjustment, while internal locus of control was an additional resource for long-term adjustment. Changes in resources over time also differentially predicted short- and long-term adjustment (e.g., an increase in internal locus of control predicted an increase in activity satisfaction at 1 year but not at 6-7 years postretirement).

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