November 18, 2009

Good days...Bad days...this past year been learning one for Baby Boomers!

There are many Baby Boomers out there, going through similar phases of feelings, as we all move toward some of the same issues we are seeing our aging parents go through, if you are lucky enough to still have your parents alive. With the economic crisis of our country of the last year and the end of many Boomer, long time jobs and careers, we are facing some unique challenges. The fact that we are part of the largest age group going through these issues at the same time is part of the problem, although, we can find some comfort in the fact that we are not going through them alone. We are all in this together! We are having the same fears of what the future holds. We are going to have good days...and bad days as we go through this crazy thing called “LIFE”! We may be many, but we are not unique human beings. All humans naturally have a view of life through our own, personal colored lenses. It is human to think about life and things moving around us, just as the we think of the planets of our solar system revolving around Earth's sun, and the sun is the center of the universe. isn’t. It’s moving and it is not the center and either are we.

I sincerely believe that a great many of us, lost our jobs due to the fact that this past year has provided corporations the answer to how were they going to deal with all of us retiring at about the same time. Companies have been struggling with this question and trying to come up with methods to be prepared, for at least a decade. When the economy began its downturn, it provided them with the out they needed. There would be no better time to get rid of their older workers than now. Think about that. The biggest issue with losing everyone to retirement was the loss of all of that experience and knowledge at once, and how to capture and transfer this experience to new, younger workers. That fear went away because EVERY company was dealing with the same issue. There is no fear of competitors gaining the advantage of that experience when everyone had the same excuse to downsize their older workers. The economic crisis also alleviated the fears of age discrimination coming back at them because “it’s just the economy”.

Now, Boomers have had a year to try and figure out what they are going to do, especially the ones who were near retirement, but not quite there. They have been wondering around in a multi-directional state of either looking for a job similar to what they did before, and dealing with everyone else doing the same; looking for any job they can get, while dealing with everyone else doing the same; or taking a totally new direction.

Many have chosen to make this an opportunity to follow a new path or perhaps a lifelong dream that they have put on the back burner for most of their lives.

This brings me to why I’m writing this article. It has been a year and yes, it looks like the economy has stopped falling. I agree that, for many reasons, companies have chosen to look more positively to the future. Let’s face it.... They got rid of a hell of a lot of overhead!!! They should be better off without more than half of their previous workforce gone!

Over this year, personally speaking, I have chosen to make “what I do” for the rest of my life focused on creativity. My main focus has been music, as I have been a musician for over 40 years now and it is truly what I do best. I have also discovered that I enjoy writing. So far, I have really only been writing a journalistic style. I have yet to really work at a fictional or even non-fictional story style of writing. I have some ideas in the back of my mind that I make notations about. Perhaps they may turn into more of a story, but for now, I continue to write for a few on-line journal/news type websites. These give visibility and experience. They do not provide much income, unless they are your complete and full focus and you put so many articles out there that you only stop due to your fingers cramping up.

I have accomplished a few milestones in my path as a singer/song writer/recording artist, as I have released two albums, with some original material. The marketing and promotion of being an independent artist is also a full time effort to become very successful. It also requires some major investment of money, if you want some professional publishing help.

I have decided to investigate starting a small business, centered on music. This is something that I have had in the back of my mind as a “wouldn’t it be great to”, more than a reality, for many years. I have decided to take this out of the “wish” state to the “reality” state, full on. I am leaning all about starting a small business and I know that I have the key ingredient for success of this...that I have only discovered over this past year, and that is CONFIDENCE! I have been making statements for years that “this business would do better IF” and “that one will never make it BECAUSE”. Now, I am following the steps to make all of my life and music experience a reality.

So, I have taken a year to center my ambitions to focus on three areas. I feel that, in some ways, these can remain viable to continue, but there is not doubt that starting a business will consume my main focus for quite a while from this point. This will undoubtedly cause the other two to suffer, but I think they are still worthwhile, as they are fulfilling something in me. One of them, recording, will actually fit quite well into my business as I will be able to record in my own place, so, that’s a good thing. The writing is just something that I feel a reason to follow that I can’t quite explain other than, it feels right.

Lastly, as there are these three main focuses in my life right now....That involve the creative self.... There are just those BLANK days, when that part of the brain is being clouded or shut down, due to the “do this and do that” of our every day hectic lives. A large part of this is caused by the reality of also constantly being aware that I need to continue to look for real income and jobs. Job searching can be a full time efforts as well.  All of this has made me much busier than when I had my previous full time, corporate job, when I shut my creative brain down, mostly, paid the bills and took care of our family life.

I am having a week of those BLANK days this week. That has prodded me to write this article for my blog. I do find that sometimes just writing whatever comes out as I type, can be a therapy of sorts. It can bring you into the NOW and force your brain to stop it’s focus on the “what I need to do later or tomorrow”...those things that bring the clouds into your brain.

So this helped me today....regardless of any readers of this article, but I will post it, for as I said in the beginning, we Boomers are in this together and we can always look to each other for support and help.

1 comment:

Beverly Mahone said...


This is a thought-provoking article. So much has happened in the past year or so that is having a tremendous impact on our livelihoods. Some of it has been self-imposed from greediness, selfishness and just plain stupidity. I prefer to enjoy the journey, learn the lessons and continue to grow because the alternative is grim.