Hope everyone had a real nice Labor Day holiday this year. It’s always a pleasure to meet with family and friends for an easy day of relaxation and enjoyable conversation. Among the many topics discussed is the fact that it’s not uncommon for us baby boomers to continue to work well into our 60s, 70s or even 80s. 

There are certainly many baby boomers who can’t wait to retire, especially those with highly demanding and stressful professions. However, some older Americans are choosing to find new challenges that will keep them engaged. For example, I have a good friend, who at 65 years old, is studying to be a registered nurse after having worked in sales for decades. I have an acquaintance, who at 62 years old, just passed the bar exam and plans to work as a criminal defense attorney. It appears that as people continue to live longer and stay in reasonably good health, the desire to keep working well past retirement age is gaining momentum. In fact, many people are searching for “encore careers” in totally different fields than what they may have been doing for most of their lives.

There are several benefits to keeping yourself employed which include:

Having a purpose – Getting up, going to work, talking with co-workers, meeting with clients, etc. is all about maintaining a purpose in life. In fact, let me say this — having a purposeful life is to have a life full of purpose. When we are needed and wanted in life, this keeps us active, engaged, motivated, and mentally and physically on our game. 

Earning Income – Those individuals who work far past normal retirement age are preserving, and even adding to their existing nest egg. Some people who retire early may find that their money does not hold out sufficiently into their very old age. Keeping that core wealth intact, while possibly adding to it, is a very financially sound thing to do. 

Contributing to society – Sadly, there is a tendency in our society to relegate older people to the sidelines. Sometimes we are considered as “obsolete inventory.” But by working, older Americans are not only continuing to be tax paying productive and constructive members of society, but they are also interfacing with other generations in the workforce, changing attitudes about the elderly, and passing along a lifetime of experience, expertise, and wisdom. 

Nancy Seiverd, President, CMI Credit Mediators, Inc.

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