Midsters with attitude counter ageism.
I am embracing my 50s with the same, ‘can do attitude’ I have had all my life, that is what inspired me to start Rejuvage, to share and capture the joy of mid-life at work and play.
There is no way I am contemplating retiring and wearing elasticated clothes. I feel as energised and creative as ever. This is a time for me, as my girls are more independent now, it’s a time to thrive and grow!
Being a midster can be an empowered time of life at work if you embrace it with the right attitude. The idea of taking it easy and joining the retired establishment fills me with dread. But unfortunately, the media and many people seem to take this road or blame the downward curve of their career on corporates rather than their own attitude!!
Yes there is ageism around, but by employing a few new strategies at work you can be as fulfilled in your 50s/60s as your 20s/30s. Age should not be a demographic barrier; you can help to turn this around. I think sometimes people dream of retirement because they have been worn down and have not reflected on new strategies they could employ at work.
So let’s turn around ageism in the workplace. With more and more of us living longer, decades past the retirement age and still want to work, it’s time for us to #ageamazing, by embracing a few simple strategies:
Stay true to yourself, have attitude
When Noel Gallagher turned 50 in June this year, he is as busy as ever completing his new album and giving outspoken interviews, reminding us that his anti-establishment attitudes are the same now as in his 20/30s. He is still wearing the same brands he has done for decades and produces great music.
This provides a compelling example of why we should ignore ageist stereotypes, stay true to yourself instead. I am still on the creative journey I started in the punk days and am not going to change.
You do not need to change your identity just because you are 50, or 60, you evolve but stay true to yourself. This helps you remain ageless and relevant at work.
Bono having more fun at Noel Gallagher's birthday party! Photo via @bonojour. pic.twitter.com/A4ntO9HGTh
— U2start.com (@U2start) May 29, 2017
Stay Energised And Embrace Wellness
It is a fact that we’re more susceptible to physical and health problems after the age of 45. These can affect our ability to concentrate and perform at our best at work. Testosterone levels drop in men and many women are affected by the menopause, which can affect your confidence, energy and physical/mental productivity.
By adopting a healthy proactive approach to life, eating a diet filled with unprocessed foods and taking regular exercise you will feel the performance benefits in every aspect of your life.
Yes, it may take more of an effort than it did in your 20s to stay fit, but a fit and healthy mind and body provides a platform for success. Just look at Richard Branson who says keeping to his healthy lifestyle even when travelling is key to his success. As well as the upside of looking youthful and stops some of those ageist comments.
Keep Your Brain Active
The phrase ‘use it or lose it’ can be taken literally when it comes to the mind. If you aren’t stimulating the brain by learning new skills and staying engaged, cognitive function will decrease.
This is the time to tap into your stock of accumulated knowledge, which continues to increase well into your 70s if you keep active. Timothy Salthouse, director of the Cognitive Ageing Laboratory at the University of Virginia encourages people to assimilated new tricks into familiar fields which will give you advantages at work.
Reset Your Expectation, Be Flexible
Our work-life balance shifts, as we get older, you have different financial commitments in your 50s and may have new motivations. Reflect on what the right balance is for you and be clear on what you want to get from work.
You may be driven by money, sense of achievement, flexible hours, and working from home. Understanding this will help you open yourself up to new opportunities, this is a good time to embrace a new idea. Accept you may be past your earning peak, look at different options, it will surprise you how happy and productive this will feel.
My interview with "Ageist" on staying strong, fit, and healthy after 50 –https://t.co/s6BWTaUFV5 pic.twitter.com/IAchior0s7
— Craig Cooper (@craigcooperrrr) September 20, 2016
Believe In You, Take Control
Being a midster, 50+ is not old, the experience you bring means you can add unique value in lots of different ways –think beyond your existing work. Many organisations are suffering from a talent gap – and your skill, knowledge and experience means you could add value in many ways. Look for companies like The Co-op, Boots, Barclays, Aviva and others have pledged to increase the number of over-50s in their companies by 12 percent in five years.
The statistics show that so many ‘midsters’ disappear from the workforce in their 50s, with a conception they’re past their peak, or unable to perform, partly fueled by the underrepresentation of middle-aged people in the media.
Add this to the rising redundancy rate in your 50s and 60s – it shows that we need attitude to be #ageamazing, with energy, attitude, flexibility and experience we can change prejudice. The reward of waking up every day and doing something your love feels so much better than conforming to a retirement that you weren’t ready for.