Even if you’re feeling inspired, even if you’re getting going on a project, it’s important to not let yourself get too alone. There’s a world out there to get connected to! And being retired means you have time to explore it! So now is the time to either go out into the world or invite the world to you. The suggestions on this page start with online courses, as well as options for connecting to book groups, TED Talk discussion groups, and community groups:

Like to learn? Get connected to online courses.

Take courses from places like Harvard, Yale, and more, all from the comfort of your home. Platforms like https://www.coursera.org/ or https://online-learning.harvard.edu/ are filled with an incredible number of online courses in every conceivable subject matter – and many of them for free. Here are a few interesting ones:

path to happiness, buddha with candlesThe Path to Happiness: What Chinese Philosophy Teaches Us about the Good Life

This course challenges popular modern ideas and brings voices from the past to explore tools designed to provide more happiness in today’s world.


science of weather, woman with umbrellaBackyard Meteorology: The Science of Weather

Imagine forecasting the weather just by looking out your window! This course will help you understand cloud and thunderstorm types. It will also teach you how air, wind, and water interact in weather systems and global climate systems.


Ancient Egyptian Art and Archaeology, pyramidPyramids of Giza: Ancient Egyptian Art and Archaeology

Have you ever dreamed of traveling to Egypt to see the Pyramids? This course explores the archaeology, history, art, and hieroglyphs surrounding the Egyptian Pyramids at Giza. Learn about Old Kingdom pharaohs and elites, tombs, temples, and the Sphinx. Finally, discover how new technology is unlocking secrets of the past.


Science & Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to Soft Matter Science

This course is a must for food lovers! Watch world-famous chefs reveal secrets behind some of their famous creations. Then explore the science behind the recipe with Harvard scientists. Topics include everything from what makes a great duck sauce to how to cook the perfect egg. You’ll also learn the science behind candy and chocolate.


Science of Well-Being, woman waking up happyThe Science of Well-Being

Are you ready to engage in a series of challenges designed to increase your happiness and build more productive habits? This course reveals common misconceptions about happiness and practical strategies you can put into place to change both your mindset and your actions.


get active, woman with dumbbellsSit Less, Get Active

Would like to be more active, but are unsure about how to incorporate physical activity into your daily life? This short course gives you science-backed, practical strategies on how to sit less and become more active wherever you are and no matter your lifestyle.


Why Exercise Makes You Healthy, grandma working outThe Body Matters: Why Exercise Makes You Healthy and How to Stay Uninjured

Did you know that physically active, obese individuals live longer than inactive thin individuals? If you’re interested in leading an active lifestyle, this course will both entertain and challenge you. You will learn the principles of body movement and biological, psychological, and social issues related to activity, sport, injury, and rehabilitation. The course will include content from leading global experts in multiple fields related to the science of exercise.

Like to read? Get connected to book groups.

Reading is a great way to keep the mind active, but by definition, it’s a solo activity. Want to make it more social? Join an online book group, where you can connect with others reading the same book and share ideas and comments. Here’s a list of nine online book clubs you can join:

Prefer videos? Try TED Talk groups.

Tired of small talk when you get together with friends either online or in-person? Go beyond small talk by bringing friends together in-person
or online to watch and discuss a TED Talk.
Start your own group or join an existing one. https://www.tedcircles.com/
And then, there’s always YouTube! https://www.youtube.com/

Enjoy getting out of the house? Get out into the community!

Don’t forget your local library or community center: they have a variety of programs and some of them may be just what you were looking for. There are art groups, walking groups, biking groups, Tai Chi groups, photography groups and so much more. Whatever hobby you have or are interested in developing, why do it alone? Join a local group focused on that hobby. It’s a great way to make friends and break that feeling of social isolation. And remember that there are always local groups or causes that need volunteers. Get involved!