With an expectation to live 30 more years than the previous generation, baby boomers are heralding a “longevity revolution” that will invite increased options to fill the extended years of life. With these “dividend years” in mind, over 70% expect to work well beyond their parent’s transition to a strictly leisure-focused life.
The Mature Market Institute, MetLife’s organization that provides research on issues of aging, released a leading-edge study—Discovering What Matters: Balancing Money, Medicine and Meaning. The study explored the role that purpose plays in the lives of people over 50. As the study states, “…for most people, their primary goal is not financial freedom or good health, or even free time—it is to have purpose and meaning in their lives.”
Since today’s boomers nearing an end to their primary careers lack models to emulate, their task of creating meaningful options for themselves is challenging.
With the desire for purpose being central to the next chapter, boomers might consider asking these simple questions for further clarification of goals and plans:
- What is the significance of this stage of my life? What would give it more meaning?
- What are the primary skills, competencies and talents that I’d like to offer at this time?
- Where in the world is there a match between my skills and what would give me a sense of meaning and provide an opportunity to leave a legacy?
- What topics and issues engage me?
- What might I do next to investigate possible options?
There’s a new way to retire these days. It might be going back to school to develop new competencies, spearheading a community-based initiative, or serving as a mentor or advisor in your career field.
Taking time to consider ideas, possibilities, and changes that are aligned with priorities and talents can create a whole new sense of purpose and fulfillment for your next stage of life.
Heart At Work Associates, a career and outplacement firm in Portland, Maine has developed an innovative initiative called “The Boomer Institute”. This program, scheduled to begin this year, is a unique matching between talented and experienced boomers and opportunities with Maine employers. Consider signing up to be the first to know when it launches.