Like me, you may have looked at your life after 50 and decided you wanted to do more before you pass those pearly gates.
If you’re wondering how to reinvent yourself after 50, take these steps: Clarify your life goals, update financial goals, discern primary reasons for reinvention (enjoyment, fulfillment, income), identify your best skills, note what you love to do, and map out a plan with time frames.
Because part of enjoying life is having income to live how you want, part of my reinvention process is about creating income, wealth, or both.
But here’s the beauty of reinvention, especially later in life when you know what floats your boat: Wealth creation and lifelong desires merge. This fuels fulfillment and happiness.
You can read about how I reinvented myself after 50 or click the Table of Contents below to get busy reinventing yourself.
Also, grab a journal, and make lots of notes as this will help you take action on your insights as you read through the 9 steps below. While 9 steps may sound like a lot, this can be life changing, so keep going.
My Own Reinvention After 50
I will share the following not to brag but to show you that if I can do this, you can reinvent your own life. In my late 40’s, I saw that we weren’t on track to reach our financial goals which fueled a massive reinvention for both me and my husband.
So, since I turned 50, I have:
- Launched and run 3+ online businesses
- Revamped our entire wealth plan
- Bought 4 rental properties
- Bought and sold land
- Learned and continue to sell covered calls
- Published a book
- Manage a diversified portfolio of stocks and alternative investments
All of this completely changed our financial situation and retirement plan. Before, we were hoping to live off investments in just stocks, bonds, and social security in retirement.
But it’s done so much more than provide income; it’s led to personal development that I would have never imaged – things like public speaking, building my own websites, managing my time better and even managing an outsourced team. Yikes!
Once we got started, we saw more and more opportunities to own and embrace our financial future. We’ve enjoyed learning new skills and growing as we got older.
Nowadays, when it comes down to it my thoughts now go something like this: Do I want to go shopping for something I don’t really need or write a new article that can serve my readers instead?
How to Reinvent Yourself After 50
If you’re looking online to see how to reinvent yourself, you have probably been thinking about this for a while just like I was.
Congratulate yourself for thinking outside the box and even seeing this as an option, most people don’t.
It’s hard to go against herd mentality and do something different. I have been on the other side of people asking “Now, how do you make money from a website?”
List All Your Reinvention Ideas
You probably already have many ideas swimming in your brain.
So, the first step is to get all the ideas out of your brain so you can evaluate them and start moving forward with the best idea.
List all of your ideas under the Reinvention Ideas section in your journal.
Next, on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the best, rate each idea for how much you enjoy it.
Don’t make the mistake many of us made in college where we chose a major because we knew we could get a job.
Truly focus on what you enjoy before you go any further. This is because you naturally will do better doing something which you enjoy.
There will probably be aspects of your reinvention that you won’t enjoy. For example, I don’t enjoy mundane tasks, managing outsourcers and technology. These are all facts of life for having an online business. (Now, though, I actually enjoy creating websites!)
But right now, on a rainy weekend morning, for example, I am truly enjoying writing this post. The thought that you may read it and benefit from it completely delights and fulfills me.
Recently, I had my mother’s wedding diamond made into earrings, and now I am excited to share the emotional challenge and subsequent delight of having done this!
Plus, I enjoyed designing and creating the website with my son.
This makes creating a content based website a 5 on the enjoyment scale for me.
If you love networking, you might enjoy local consulting, for example. Or if you love to paint, you might enjoy selling your paintings.
Dig deep away from what you think you have to do and rate your list based on how much you enjoy the thought of your reinvention ideas.
Define Your Reinvention Goals
Next, decide what you want on the other side of your reinvention. Again, I am assuming you’d like some financial gain from your reinvention since it can be very rewarding (and lucrative) to create a new income stream.
So, what is your main goal from reinvention between these 3 categories:
Income and wealth building overlap, but you’ll probably have a more primary focus of one or the other.
For example, if you need more income each month so you can join a local Barre studio, income is your primary goal. If you have plenty of income, and are saving money every month to grow, eventual wealth is your goal.
While extra income is always nice, it can lead to more in taxes. Sometimes, building wealth later is a better goal.
But having “both” as at least a secondary goal makes the most sense for most people. This is because through your reinvention process you can choose to generate income while also creating an asset that builds wealth, too.
Time to Launch
Write how long it will take you to implement your reinvention idea.
For example, if you want to go to seminary or get an MBA, it can take years.
On the other hand, creating a website loaded with keyword–based content can take from months to a year.
While going to a networking event and handing out business cards for your new service or consulting business takes less than 24 hours!
Time to Test
One of the most important things about starting a new you is testing the results without a lot of time or money. This is known as “lean testing’ in entrepreneurial circles.
Going back to the examples above, it will take at least a few months to see if the results of getting an MBA pay off.
It will take at least 8 months and more likely a year or more to see if creating a content based website pays off.
Yet it will take about half an hour to see if starting a service based or consulting business pays off. This is the beauty of testing any idea locally before going online often works well.
For example, if several people are interested in hiring you at the local event, you’re on to a good reinvention. If you get blank stares, then you are either in front of the wrong crowd or another idea will probably work better.
You can see this instantly at local events but tapping into this online can take months or it may never happen.
Of course, if you offer consulting for alpaca farms to increase their earnings, then you’ll probably need to offer your services online to even test the concept since you’ll probably not bump into anyone else needing alpaca farm consulting services in your hometown.
Cost to Create
Continuing with the important lean testing philosophy, write about how much it will cost for you to create your reinvention.
For example, building a website can be under $25 these days. Or you can get a starter website built for less than $300.
On the other hand, getting business cards for a local business costs $25.
And getting an MBA is going to be pretty expensive.
Inventing a product and taking it to market can take anywhere between $ 100 and hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Opening a bakery or buying a franchise often cost in the hundreds of thousands.
A common solution to unhappy employment is to do what you are doing as your own boss vs as an employee. I have worked through this process with a couple of coaching clients for a simple and low cost reinvention that led to more income with some tax lowering benefits.
Here’s another example that I helped a few coaching clients with service based businesses implement. Let’s say you have a practice as an accountant, therapist or financial advisor, but you don’t like your existing client base.
As an initial part of your reinvention, you can redefine or narrow your niche to an area your enjoy and gradually get new clients that you’re happier to work with.
Then, you could add another level should you choose by getting clients outside of your area through a website and other mediums such as a Facebook page, Instagram or YouTube channel.
Now that we’ve covered the cost to reinvent yourself, let’s move to time, an even bigger asset.
Time to Manage
Write down how long it will realistically take you to manage your reinvention business. This is where you’ll really be able to see and fine tune how your reinvention ideas works with your lifestyle desires.
If you want to work 25 hours a week, but your reinvention idea takes 50 hours a week to run, it clearly won’t work.
But here’s an important tip: Consider if you can outsource the running of a business.
For example, only you can do one on one consulting, but a virtual assistant can handle your social media, billing and bookkeeping.
I have hired about 8 outsourcers, all with different skills, that help us run our online businesses. It is easy to outsource work nowadays through global outsourcing platforms.
I have also found outsourcers on Craig’s list.
Cost to Manage
The “cost to manage” category is a close cousin to “time to manage”. If you do everything yourself your reinvention idea may cost little to manage.
If you’re thinking of opening a bakery or boutique, your cost to manage will be very high.
Estimate how much it will cost you to manage your reinvention idea based on how much time and capital you want to use.
Leverage and Growth
Next, rate on a scale of 1 to 5 if you can grow your business by leveraging your time or money.
If you start a consulting business, for example, can you train others to do the same type of consulting? If so, you can scale.
Or can you turn your consulting into a group program, either online or offline? If so, you can leverage your time and even reach a global market.
Your ability to leverage time and money will be a huge factor in your ability to create wealth from your reinvention.
For example, when I was reinventing myself, I was deciding between opening an antique booth or starting a financial education for women website.
I saw that the antique business was not very scalable. Even though the antique mall operator would have been in charge of staffing, I would have needed to buy one off products.
About the same time, I was experimenting with selling closeout merchandise online. I had copper outdoor lights for sale on eBay. Someone bought all the lights I had listed, resulting in a sale over $300 vs a sale of $27 for a single light.
I saw and experienced the power of scaling with the internet right then. Since that time, we have sold tens of thousands of products and services through our financial education websites and through my Amazon store.
While it’s not for everyone, the internet does allow you to reach a global market that wants just what you have to offer. And that’s pretty awesome!
Relate to Existing Businesses
This is the last factor to reinvent yourself. Relation will allow you to leverage. You may as well think big, right?
So, do your ideas for reinvention relate to things you are doing now so you could tweak them a bit and be happier? An example of this is moving from employee to consultant or contractor as covered earlier.
Or maybe you want to do something completely new.
But maybe a couple of your ideas overlap as often happens. For example, if you’re an attorney, and one idea is to consult on creating wills, and another idea is to sell will templates online, the two ideas relate perfectly.
When you choose ideas for reinvention that relate to each other, you can add another service or product for your existing customers easily.
You can also enhance your growth by leveraging:
- An outsourced team
- Your expertise
- Newly acquired skills
- Online property, such as websites
- Online followers, such as Facebook followers and YouTube Subscribers
- Your customer lists
After that very first online product sale of copper lights, I have been able to leverage what I have learned about online business across several different online businesses.
Plus, our outsourcing team can work in our various related online businesses.
This has allowed for a lot of leverage and continues to do so.
Implementing more than one idea doesn’t need to happen all at once. When you look at your list of Reinvention Ideas, for example, you may notice that the same customer would be interested in more than one of your idea offerings.
So, you can start with one Reinvention Idea and get it up and running. Then you can add a related Reinvention Idea without anywhere near as much effort as the first one since you can leverage your team, skills, online properties, and followers.
And you can serve your existing customers with something else that meets their needs especially as you have gotten to know them better.
Summary for How to Reinvent Yourself After 50
You have seen the 9 factors for how to reinvent yourself after 50. If you have followed the steps above, you now have all your ideas out of your head and into your journal.
Now you’re ready to take the first step to reinvent yourself asap.