Last week I met a woman while walking on the beach in the shore town where I was spending many glorious days working and dog sitting in a beautiful place across from the ocean. We were among a handful of heliophiles up to catch what turned into a vibrant orange-scarlet sunrise.
She was walking with what seemed to be about a 4-pound Chihuahua, Lilibel, so naturally we began chatting. It reminded me of a walk I took on that same spot 9 years earlier with my baby girl Sadie.
After about 20 minutes of dog talk, she asked what I did for a living. I said I help college students and pros in their prime land their dream job. She said, “Oh wow! I get the college student thing, but how in the world do you help people in their 50s? Hasn’t their ship pretty much sailed by then?”
Haha, well as a proud Gen Xer, I can triumphantly proclaim it has not! I shared with Lilibel’s mum that actually there’s never been a more opportune time to find a job you love — at any age. I assured her it’s quite possible, and that the commonly perceived barriers to making it happen are all largely manageable with the right knowledge, guidance and mindset. And for most people, the benefits of doing so far outweigh the fears, concerns and uncertainty of making the effort.
But her point about the 20-something portion of my clients is not lost on me. It’s pretty clear why college students and recent grads should be eager and well prepared to land their dream job. They have young, bright minds, the latest knowledge in their field and likely a strong tech edge. Their education has been a significant financial investment. They also have decades ahead of them in the work world so it makes sense to launch it in the right direction.
Even though many are prepared to land their ideal job and secure weeks or months before they graduate, many others do need support in doing so. Perhaps they missed something vital in college — whether it was exactly how to land this job or some key piece of knowledge about their chosen field that eluded them. That’s where coaches like me can step in and help them close the gap between their preparation and their success in actually landing their right job.
And that’s exactly what I do for clients in the 50+ range: together we finesse their readiness and establish a clear plan on how to bridge their goals, talents and experience with their dream job.
Like in your 20s, landing your dream job in your 50s is a significant achievement with far-reaching implications for personal satisfaction, financial security and overall well-being.
This quinquagenarian (wow, say that once fast!) milestone is paramount for many reasons, including:
Fulfillment and Happiness: Time flies, and once you’re in your 50s, it zooms by faster than a blur of a bullet train. A dream job aligns your work with your passions and interests and connects to the impact you really want to make on the world, making each day more fulfilling. It can ignite a renewed sense of purpose and excitement, which is crucial for mental and emotional well-being.
Financial Security: In your 50s, financial stability becomes increasingly important, especially as retirement looms. A dream job often leads to better compensation and benefits, helping you secure your financial future and a comfortable retirement.
Experience and Expertise: By your 50s, you have accumulated a wealth of experience and knowledge … and highly valued transferable skills. Landing your dream job allows you to leverage this expertise, contributing significantly to your workplace and society at large.
Better Work-Life Balance: By definition, dream jobs often come with more flexibility, allowing you to strike a healthier work-life balance. This, in turn, reduces stress and fosters improved physical and emotional wellness.
Professional Growth: Working in your dream job can lead to continued professional expansion and personal development. This keeps you engaged, motivated and open to learning, challenging the notion that career growth is reserved for the young.
Inspiration for Others: Landing your dream job in your 50s can serve as an inspiration to others, showing that age is not a barrier to achieving one's career aspirations. Your success can motivate people of all ages to pursue their own dreams relentlessly.
Okay, these are six great reasons to make the effort of finally landing that dream opportunity! So, how do we make it happen, at 20 or 50+?
After a long and varied career in the corporate, nonprofit, small business sectors and 9 years serving as a CIO then COO, I’d seen too many people merely going through the motions in their jobs. Sadly, that’s all too common and a total drag so I turned my attention to figuring out how to help people love what they do. I began coaching and teaching at Indiana University, and soon had developed a course called Career Success Preparation for seniors in The Media School.
At its core was the methodology I’d been developing, The Love Monday Method. It’s unique because it’s grounded in a foundation of mindfulness, and it is comprehensive, strategic and tailored to an individual’s specific needs. I continued fine-tuning the process over time to ensure its effectiveness, and even today I tweak it here and there to remain ahead of the dream-job journey curve.
The 7-step process helps individuals land and thrive in work they love, regardless of their chronological age. While the challenges at various life stages differ, the goal of wanting to be happy in a role that provides you with work/life balance and makes you feel fulfilled and alive is the same.
When I work one on one with clients or teach, this approach is our guide. I had to develop it because I could tell that people were all over the place in trying to figure out how to find their ideal job. They tended to take well-meaning advice from friends, family or mentors here and there; they’d take steps out of order, skip steps and engage in really ineffectual, tactical approaches like blasting out a bunch of generic resumes to hiring managers for jobs they really didn’t want.
Instead, here’s a quick look at the steps you actually want to take:
Prepare (get organized, establish a mindful mindset)
Discover (get clear on “you”)
Explore (connect “you” with opportunities, create your plan)
Position (hone and communicate your brand)
Activate (put your plan in motion)
Land (evaluate offers and negotiate)
Thrive (succeed on the job)
If you’d like to know more about what each step includes and how to implement them all, grab my free Love Monday Roadmap now.
In the end, securing your dream job in your 20s or your 50s — or any age in between or beyond — can significantly enhance your quality of life, professionally and personally. When you’re happy and flourishing, your colleagues, friends and family are happy for you and enjoy being around you even more. And that’s how we make the world a better place — one dream job holder at a time.
Trie Angeleva LOVES helping people Reimagine Monday. A Mindful Dream-Job Career Coach, she's a proud adopted-dog mom, former CIO and COO, travel-happy yogi and founder of The Love Monday Method. She developed and taught Career Success Preparation for The Media School at Indiana University, where she taught 21 classes. Trie has two Master's degrees, six coaching certifications and a certificate in Executive Leadership from Cornell University. Follow her on instagram at @reimaginemonday for tips and strategies on how to land work you love and thrive personally and professionally.
If you're stuck in YOUR dream-job search, Trie's got you covered! For recent and soon-to-be college students, she's got a free checklist you will LOVE. For pros in their prime, who need a little clarity figuring out what to do when in their search, Trie has a short, sweet and super succinct free roadmap that maps out all the steps to take in what order. Best wishes and reach out with any questions.