Adjusting successfully to retirement: Qualitative and quantitative investigations on identity, meaning, and mattering

Auteur Ariane FROIDEVAUX
Directeur /trice Prof. Andreas Hirschi
Co-directeur(s) /trice(s)
Résumé de la thèse

As retirement represents an increasingly large portion of adult life, it has become particularly important for retirees to successfully adjust to retirement. The main objective of this dissertation was to investigate how older workers subjectively experience the transition from employment to retirement and initial post-retirement trajectory. Using a consensual qualitative research design with a sample of 16 retired individuals, and two one-year time lagged design studies with samples of 55+ older workers (N = 161) and retirees (N =186), this dissertation explores how individuals (1) develop a satisfactory lifestyle, (2) detach themselves from work both socially and psychologically (i.e., identity and social contribution); and (3) which resources and (4) how social interactions (e.g., social support, caregiving) contribute to foster retirement adjustment in terms of well-being and identity. Results suggest that (1) retirement may represent a turning point in the importance of affective experiences with aging, and is perceived as new life phase, which becomes especially meaningful as retirees reconcile with their past; (2) that retirees mostly perceive continuity between their self at retirement and their previous work self, especially as they transfer some of their professional know-how skills, and that the subjective perception of social contribution (i.e., mattering) plays a significant role in retirement adjustment but not in retirement planning; (3) that life conditions (health and finances), individuality (personality traits, optimism, coping strategies), time perceptions (daily activities, busyness, mastering one's time), and (4) social interactions (need to share and receive support, need to be available and support others) represent key resources fostering successful retirement adjustment. Overall, this dissertation creates the basis to develop a research trend which integrates well-being and identity as two interrelated aspects of retirement adjustment, allowing future research to explore relationships between resources and distinct identity and well-being patterns, among retirees.

Statut terminé
Délai administratif de soutenance de thèse Froidevaux-Rosselet, A. (2016). Adjusting successfully to retirement: Qualitative and quantitative investigations on identity, meaning, and mattering. Doctoral thesis under the direction of Prof. Dr. Andreas Hirschi. Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, University of Lausanne, Switzerland
URL https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ariane_Froidevaux
LinkedIn https://ch.linkedin.com/in/arianefroidevaux/