The First Three Steps To Starting Over, After 50.
- Find Work
- Affordable Housing
- Continuously Move Forward
Did you read those three bullets and think to yourself, “Yeah, I’ve got that covered. This doesn’t apply to me”?
Hold on there, Clickopotamus!
Because maybe you’ve got the one or two covered, but if you had all three in the bag, you’d have an all-around feeling of confidence and awesomeness about yourself.
If not, let’s go through the three bullets really quickly.
Step One: Find Work
Any honest, LEGAL income is good income.
If you’ve decided that the Breaking Bad route is going to be your new career path, remember that handcuffs hurt.
And nobody looks good in orange. Period.
So find work — any work.
Bring. In. Income.
The key here is to find work and THEN actively seek alternative work — better work — while you’re working that job.
I told you about the soul-sucking, remote, $13/Hr job that I started with. And while I worked that job, I actively applied for 3-7 jobs, each and every day — as well as interviewed for other jobs — until I found a better job.
HOWEVER, I kept that remote job on a part-time basis, to increase my income and my savings.
Yes, I’m working 7 days a week now. Will that be forever? Nope.
Will that help me get to where I want to be (Goal List)? Abso-frickin’-lutely.
You do what works for you.
Remember, your current place in life is not your permanent place in life.
So find work. Then find better work. Then concentrate on landing your dream job.
It’s out there. Go and get it.
Just make damn sure you’re working in the meantime.
Step Two: Affordable Housing
Having a roof over your head is critical.
Living in a tent sucks! Cardboard boxes don’t stand up to the elements. Living in your car isn’t safe.
Secure housing that you can afford.
If you’re not in a financial place to pay rent and utilities right now, then it’s time to suck it up and ask for help.
Moving in with family or friends is a temporary situation.
Once you find work and start bringing in some money, save it so you can move into a place of your own.
This is not the time to buy clothes, shoes, get your nails done, pick up the check for friends at restaurants, head to the bar to watch the game — you get the idea.
Before any purchase, ask yourself, “Do I need this?”
I limited my spending to groceries, car payment, car insurance, cell phone, storage unit payment and WiFi. Everything else went directly into my move-into-my-own-place fund.
Your new place should be safe and affordable. That’s it.
This may sound like the Zero Perks part of life, but if you’re starting over by yourself with next to nothing , it is the current reality.
The same principles of finding employment apply here. This is your starting point. This is not — should not — does not have to be — your permanent place in life.
Find affordable, safe housing. And then save your money and move into a better place.
List your dream home on your Goals. Absolutely anything is attainable.
Never take your eyes off of the prize!
Step Three: Continuously Move Forward
Securing employment and affordable, safe housing is critical.
Moving forward is equally critical.
Ask yourself these questions:
Are you happy with your life, or are you simply existing?
Do you look forward to going to work, or is it just a paycheck?
Are you sitting at home by yourself on your time off, or are you spending time doing the things you love with people that you enjoy?
If you answered “no” to any of these questions, you are not alone.
This is your opportunity to restart, refocus and reinvent, in any area that isn’t bringing you JOY.
- If you’re relocating, join Facebook groups in your new location. Ask for recommendations for things to do; Parks & museums to visit, the best restaurants, suggestions of festivals/events that the locals recommend. Overall, most people are good people and want to help, if they can.
- Your positive attitude while at your new job will not only be noticed and appreciated, it will carry you so much farther than the employees that show up for a paycheck. Be coachable.
- Single folks need to get the heck over it and start dating again. None of us are meant to isolated and alone. Dip your toe into the online dating pool. Be smart and safe.
- Write your goals and focus on the short-term goals that you can accomplish right now or within the upcoming month, as well as the midterm goals (the next 3-6 months). Achieving your goals keeps the positive momentum flowing.
- Keep your focus on what’s most important to you and your happiness. Everyone and everything else can and will wait for you to reemerge happier and healthier.
- Get out of your house and your head. Fresh air and exercise are great for focusing your mind and clarity.
- Find hobbies that interest you and then join established groups with people that enjoy the same hobbies; Share tips, recipes, motorcross stats — whatever. Facebook and Pinterest are excellent platforms for group support/connectivity.
- MeetUp, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Facebook: Link up with other people who are in your same field of expertise, or in connecting with a mentor that will assist you in learning a new skill.
- Broaden your horizons. Always wanted to learn how to downhill ski? Head for the slopes. Have an interest in learning to bake? Take a baking class. If you’re extended an invitation — as awkward as it may be — accept and get out of your house and comfort zone for a while.
As overwhelmingly as starting our lives over, after the age of 50, may be, it’s 100% completely doable.
Not only that, it can be invigorating, exciting and amazing, if we allow ourselves to actually start living again.
Giving ourselves permission — to move forward and be happy — is necessary and liberating!
It’s okay to remember the past; Just don’t get hung up on looking in that rear-view mirror more than you’re looking through the windshield — straight ahead — toward your new life.
We all have to start at zero at some point in our lives, but don’t get hung up on that little factoid.
One forward step at a time, and you’ll be astounded at what you’ll accomplish and how HAPPY you are.