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ReCareer in the Second-half of Life

By Barbara Wulf , Beckon Call Coach

Ah, Spring! Time for renewal, regrowth, ReCareer. ReCareer? What’s that about? ReCareering is about finding authentic work in the second half of life. I decided to learn more about the process of recareering recently with Richard P. Johnson PhD, author of ReCareer, Finding Your Authentic Work.

We are still finding ourselves in the aftershock of the recession of 2008. People are continuing to look for work, create new opportunities and wait for momentum in the hiring cycle. We know some positions will return. Others will not. When people find themselves jobless, perspectives can shift. During the period of
waiting, some have discovered that losing a job can make us realize that we could, and maybe should, be doing something else.

ReCareering is about finding the right fit. Many of us worked the first half of our life to “fit” the job description. We worked the long hours, worked various shifts, drove the long commute and spent time on the road away from family. We did what we needed to do to pay bills, pay a mortgage, raise a family, etc. ReCareering is the process of being selective, being creative, being fulfilled and being intentional about how you spend your time.

Dr. Johnson believes that second-half of life seekers want something deeper out of life. “They want more personal purpose, more meaning, they want to align their personality more clearly, they want to be more ‘on target’ with their life. They seek a nearer connection between their life and the larger world; they want their efforts to be more socially redeemable.” Hmmm, is that too much for us to ask?

Job change in midlife can present opportunity. The second-half seeker brings loyalty, equivalent productivity, a better safety record, a higher work satisfaction level and an appreciation of the value of work, as compared to younger workers. There are myths concerning the middle aged and more mature workers. Most of the myths are attributed to stereotypes and are held by potential employers and older workers as well. The myths cause the second-half seeker to focus on what is lost and to dwell on scarcity thinking.

A typical question that a job seeker in the mid-years often asks is, how can I find a job doing something else — something I really enjoy?” Look inward. Answer the question by asking yourself:

* What is your current definition of personal success? How does it compare to how you would define success in younger years?

* What is your ReCareer dream? What is the fit between your ReCareer dream and your current resources and personal gifts?

* What would stop you from moving forward with your recareer plans?

Whether you are unemployed, non-employed, underemployed or empty-employed, the benefits of rethinking your career with recareering might be beneficial. Formulate a plan to find or create a more fulfilling career. Enlist the help of a career coach. Seek out the training and connections you will need to be successful. Finally, surround yourself with positive people who will support you in your transition.

“It is not our age that is at fault, but rather our attitude toward it.” – Cicero: “On Old Age”, 1st Century B.C.

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