Learning doesn’t have to stop at retirement! For many of us, there are lots of things we wished we had learned. We may never have had the chance at school, college or university. Life happened and learning took a back seat to paying the bills, raising the kids and getting on with things. Retirement is a fresh start! When you live in a Platinum Skies property, with your property maintenance taken care of and a relaxing place to live, there has never been a better time to study that topic that has always fascinated you. According to The Guardian, Lifelong learning is the secret to happiness in old age. It gives you focus, satisfaction, a sense of achievement, mental well-being and a certain independence. Learning keeps your mind active and we’ve found out some local courses and learning opportunities near to our Monterey property in Christchurch to give you some ideas. Have you always wanted to write a novel? Creative writing courses are ever popular. Writing is a way of expressing feelings and sharing your own ideas and worlds with others. Whether you want to write an autobiography, a non-fiction work of knowledge or a novel, writing can be an incredibly fulfilling hobby. In fact, Writer’s Digest has written a whole article on getting published when you’re over 50. The best bit of this article, ‘And take inspiration from the Bangladeshi writer Nirad Chaudhuri. His first book, The Autobiography of an Unknown Indian, was published in 1951, when he was 54 years old. Its sequel hit the market in 1988, when he was 90. And his final book, Three Horsemen of the New Apocalypse, was published in 1997—when he was 100.’ There are local writing courses near our Monterey property in Christchurch as well as those run by the Arts University Bournemouth. Do you want to learn another language? It’s not only because it might be helpful on that holiday to France or Spain, it’s also sometimes just something you’ve always wanted to do! There are so many different courses available in the Dorset area so whether you want to learn French, German, Italian or even Japanese you can. Why not have a go and challenge yourself this autumn? You could even choose to learn sign-language and then this could be used for volunteering which we wrote about earlier this month. Want to know how to set-up and use your own blog website? You might not want to write a full-blown novel but you might want to chronicle your retired life, your hobbies, crafts or the DIY projects you’re involved in. Blogging is a great way to do this online, meet like-minded people and let people know what works well and what doesn’t. One of the great things about everything being so digital now is the fact that things are so accessible. There are online courses which allow you to learn how to set-up and run a blog, and these can be a great way to learn how to blog. So as you can see, near our Monterey property in Christchurch, Dorset, there are a plentiful array of courses. If you want to be part of this vibrant community in your retirement, contact us today or call us on 01202 471461.