So you’ve retired. What comes next? Many retirees find themselves lingering within the retirement grey zone as they make their full transition into this new phase of life. But what if there is a second act following your career? One that could check off all the boxes; multiple streams of income, core pursuits, and socialization. Retirement coach and author of Second-Act Careers: 50+ Ways to Profit From Your Passions During Semi-Retirement, Nancy Collamer, joins this episode to talk through exploring second-act careers and how they can benefit you in the long run.
Listen as she provides tips for finding your second act, ideas for additional streams of income, and explains why it’s never too early or too late to start your second act in retirement. Nancy also shares how she pinpointed her second act, why trying things you’re interested in can lead to new opportunities, and the top fear of those seeking a second act. To conclude, Nancy describes the concept of a Reinvention R&D Budget, utilizing gig platforms, and Wes shares some insight about finding his core pursuits in life.
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Read Show Notes From This Episode (click to expand and read notes from the full interview)
- When trying to figure out what to do in the second act of your life, take out a piece of paper and write down 3 columns.
What do I like to do? What do I do well? What do I find meaningful?
Most people base part of their 2nd half careers on what they did before but they tweak it to get rid of the parts they didn’t like. Nancy brings up a story about a standup comedian.
Nancy brings up that she writes for “Next Avenue” on PBS. She interviewed a man who had been a VP of a company. Starting working with “foodie tours.” He also loved basketball so he started working as an usher at Boston Celtic Games.
Wes brings up a story about going rafting with his kids in Colorado.
Wes asks Nancy about “expert streams of income.” Nancy talks about it. People are no longer in their job but they have all this knowledge and expertise. What can they do? Consulting. Teaching. These days you can create your own course online.
SCORE.ORG is a place to look
Wes brings up “Master Class” but for that, you kind of have to be a celebrity.
Nancy says it’s never too early or too late to start. If you’re within 2 years of retiring, that’s the sweet spot. If you are already retired, that’s okay. Take a couple of months, enjoy life, and then start to work on it.
You can dip your toe into this world by volunteering, trying things to see if you like it and what it requires. It will open up many opportunities.
Wes asks Nancy how she got into figuring out her 2nd Act. Nancy explains. She was a psychology major in college. Didn’t know what she wanted to do. Worked at AT & T and realized she needed to get her act together. She worked for them right as they were breaking up and they brought in career counselors. She found it interesting. And thought about doing that herself. She took a Master’s program in career development and spent a long time working with moms. Just kept getting more and more into it.
Wes asks about top fears. Nancy says the top fear is not being able to find something they liked as much as their career. Most of her clients are high-level execs so the financial fear isn’t as high, but for some it is.
Wes brings up how Nancy advocated for flexible work before it was cool. Nancy talks about this. Examples: Comedy routine, lactation consultant.
Wes asks about a Reinvention R&D Budget. Nancy explains this concept. A story about a senior move manager.
Wes brings up volunteering. Another piece of the equation is the R&D Budget.
Nancy says another way to do it is to take advantage of gig platforms. They have them for every type of pursuit you can think of. Brings up a story about a guy who loves dogs. Went on rover.com and set up a profile to be a dog walker. Longer term he’ll probably want to go out on his own but at first, he can test out the world of dog-walking.
Freelance writing, photography, dog-walking, dog-sitting, cat-sitting, etc. So many opportunities.
Nancy says you take the smallest step, but you take lots of them.
Nancy says you fail fast, you fail often, and that informs your next steps.
Wes asks about life story worksheets. Nancy says it’s hard enough to find your keys in the morning, so it makes sense that you need help figuring out your life and what to do based on what you’ve always enjoyed in life. The Marie Kondo idea of getting rid of what doesn’t spark joy.
Wes wrote down some of the things he loved doing as a kid. With a couple of them, he started businesses in those areas. Interesting history about Wes. Camp counselor, painting houses, other stuff.
Nancy says what you do next has to do with your skills and interest but it also has to do with what you’re looking for in terms of your lifestyle. It’s a moving target.
Re: travel – the opportunity to get paid to travel is limited. But the opportunity to reduce the cost of travel is pretty good.
Wes laughs and says “your next book could be about doing 3rd and 4th acts.”
Nancy says to sign up for the newsletters for some of the sites that deal with second acts. She says to go to her website and she has a list of 100 different second act career resources. Mylifestylecareer.com