A study done at the University of Gothenburg says if you plan to work in your senior years, you should start planning before age 50.
The researchers, psychologists Kerstin Wentz and Kristina Gyllensten, say their participants engaged in what they call career crafting. This meant taking themselves seriously and thinking about what they wanted in life. Remaining employed at least part time allowed them to flourish and avoid boredom while maintaining a social life. They were proactive about learning new things.
The researchers advise vocational counseling for those age 45 similar to what is given to teenagers. They also advocate making student loans available.
As an avid devotee of MOOCs and webinars, I love this idea. Personally, I grew to hate the career in the insurance industry I stumbled into at age 18. At age 45, I embarked on a master’s degree to pursue something more meaningful. I cycled through several stop gap jobs until I finally got a job at a community college. That whole process might have been shortened if I had done better research and planning.
What’s your story? Will you continue working past “normal” retirement age?