Yes! The beginning of summer brings the promise of down time and a little time to contemplate what we'd do for one extra day if we had time on our hands. I love it! Don't you?
What are you going to do with your time? Take an extra walk, a guitar lesson, clean out the garage, a Zumba class, cook an extra meal, work on your website and figure out how to use your social media better? Play with the kids, go out with your friends? Paint a picture, take a bike ride, watch a game, play a game? The possibilities are endless.
Just pick one small thing to do and watch a big change in yourself. Allow yourself to realize the value of what you're doing by adding something new to your life and every day routine. Cherish the feeling you have for feeling accomplished. Pat yourself on the back for getting out of your comfort zone and going beyond just "thinking about it." Take that risks and the payoff will be tremendously rewarding.
I picked up a racquet and played tennis with my son for the first time in four months. I took an extra Zumba class at my sister-in-law's studios, LA Dancefit -- the funnest place on earth! I cooked a fun meal with my husband with new recipes and ingredients. Rode my bike with my family (to have breakfast, but nevertheless, we rode instead of driving). Just a few extra things that added to my existing schedule, workout and kitchen routines -- I kicked them up a notch and I not only gave myself credit for all these things but I had the most wonderful time.
Tell us -- what are you going to do? Don't let those 24/7 work days control your life. Let your passions control it and take a risk!
Some advice from me and TheReinventionExchange.com:
- Be open minded
- Don't be afraid
- Step out of your comfort zone
- Dig deep -- explore what's missing that you've wanted to do, see, change
- Make a crazy good list -- no one will see it but you -- so don't hold back
- Look for excitement and embrace change
- Acknowledge all the reasons it felt good
According to a recent survey in the June 2013 issue of MORE Magazine, the top 10 things that their readers said they wanted to change about themselves:
- Travel more
- Make new friends
- Try a new sport of fitness routine
- Change your job or career
- Change your living space or location
- Take a class or go back to school
- Change your hair or makeup/find a new romantic partner (tie)
- Change the way you dress
- Start a business
What's on your top 5 list? You'll be excited to reinvent your life and I want to be here to inspire you to think about what's special for you that you want to make time for.
Now that you may have a glimpse of it -- take advantage of it and keep making those strides -- pick one of your top 5 and commit to it.
I'd love to hear your stories and what you did so please visit www.TheReinventionExchange.com. Join the conversation and see the great links to other inspiring websites and content on the "Get Inspired" page; sign up for the newsletter and please share this blog, my website, FB and TWTR links so that we can inspire and provoke the conversation.
Enjoy and #HappyReinventing!
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A blog dedicated to reinvention or "rebooting" (ending one career and pursuing a new one), RebootYou offers inspiration and support to a network of "rebooters," with fun resources such as "Ten Good Reasons to Reboot Yourself" and "Rebooter Stories," as well as some concrete guidelines on "How to Reboot."
A popular reinvention theme is using the skills and experience gleaned from years in the professional world to serve the greater good. If this sounds appealing, ReServe can help match you with a nonprofit organization that could use your help; a nonprofit group itself, ReServe helps "continuing professionals age 55+" secure a part-time, flexible position with one of its nonprofit partners, where they will be paid an hourly stipend -- which can remain a short-term project, or can serve as a stepping-stone to second career in the nonprofit sector.
In a similar vein, Encore Careers, a service of Civic Ventures, a nonprofit think tank on boomers, work and social purpose, "provides free, comprehensive information that helps people transition to jobs in the nonprofit world and the public sector." In addition to lots of information on multigenerational workforce issues and inspiring testimonials, Encore Careers provides fellowships to help a few lucky encore-career hunters get their foot in the door in the nonprofit world.
In addition to a wealth of information on topics such as financial planning for retirement and the unique health concerns affecting seniors, RetiredBrains offers a job search engine complete with a "work from home" search category.
Work Reimagined is a social networking site launched recently by AARP. Powered by LinkedIn, it connects job-seeking professionals with potential employers -- companies who have taken the "Work Reimagined pledge" to actively seek experienced professionals -- as well as with each other for support and networking.
Though it targets primarily a younger audience working their way through false starts in their professional lives, articles on topics such as "How to overcome fear and obstacles" and even "How to identify your ideal career" on the "expert advice" page of Careershifters.org can be of use to people of any age making a major career and life transition, and in need of a little motivation and guided self-reflection. For those in the U.K., this organization also offers workshops in "figuring out what you really want and making a realistic action plan."
Experience Works provides training, employment and community service to low-income seniors; operating under the belief that "Older people should have the opportunity to learn new skills and contribute to their communities throughout their lives," the organization offers training to people 55+ who are currently unemployed. Its website itself is a great resource, with advice on combating age discrimination in the labor market ("myths of maturity" and how to counter them), lists of common interview, resume, and job-search mistakes, and a link to the National Business Services Alliance's "Job Match" and "Job Search" tool, which helps older workers assess where their strengths lie and match those strengths with local job openings.
Quintessential careers is another primarily information-based online resource for career-changers and job-seekers, with articles on topics such as how to make the most of a job fair, tips for interviewing, and how to build a personal brand. It also has a special page for the unique concerns of mature and older jobseekers.
There are also plenty of useful sites for people who hope to continue in their current profession into their second half, but perhaps at a slower pace or on a part-time basis: YourEncore is a neat resource for recently retired scientists or engineers, pairing them with projects that will utilize their expertise in the consumer product, pharmaceutical / life science, aerospace / defense, food, chemical and electronic industries. Once they've joined the YourEncore network as an "expert," they can be recruited by "Member Companies" for full- or part-time work on projects of interest in their field of expertise, ranging from days to several months. Volunteers in Medicine helps retired medical practitioners offer their services pro bono to those in need. Score connects retirees from the world of business with budding small businesses that could use their expertise.
Aspiranet, one of the largest social service agencies in California, helps post 50s get started in doing work in the nonprofit sector. The service is also the first nonprofit in America to launch an Encore Fellowships program with Encore.org. The program aims to "provide a unique opportunity to take meaningful action, using skills and knowledge you already have, while learning firsthand about the nonprofit sector and exploring potential work options." Aspiranet provides a list of their 35 programs to chose from as well as testimonials from their Encore Fellows.
Follow Kathi Sharpe-Ross on Twitter: www.twitter.com/KathiSR