Monday, August 15, 2011

Thirty Days of Smart Money Choices:

A man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions. Luke 12:15

The Greatest Generation, as they are called, generally followed a strict corporate career structure. Beginning with their baby boomer children, each succeeding generation has become more flexible in job outlook. Millenials, for example, are often entrepreneurial in spirit and often start small businesses that are centered on jobs or skills they enjoy. Internet technology makes it possible to market such businesses. Many are choosing job and life satisfaction over prestige and paycheck.

Whatever generation someone belongs to, today's business culture makes it more likely that an individual will have at least two types of work during their lifetime. For example, the baby boomer who is downsized out of a job or who has retired may start a new venture during midlife and later -- provided that they are physically healthy enough to do so. Likewise, a woman may choose for her main career to be that of managing her home and family, yet she may also take on outside work in different seasons of life. The young entrepreneur who launches a small business may sell a successful one and move on to something else or, conversely, may not succeed and end up in a more traditional work role.

If you are at a career crossroads in life, you may be stuck as to what you want to do next. Here are a couple of ideas:

As baby boomers and Gen X-ers age, more health care resources are needed. If you do not wish to go back to school to become a doctor or a nurse, there are other opportunities in the field of medicine that you might consider. For example, you might become a paid health care advocate, who helps patients manage their own health care. Or, you might become a sitter for someone who is home bound. Health care provides volunteer opportunities, too.

If health care is not your thing, you might consider becoming a docent. If your town has a museum or a historical attraction, for example, you may find work giving tours. Similarly, libraries often need assistance.

In some places, any college degree will qualify you to become a substitute teacher. If you love children and are looking for "a career after a career", consider substituting.

If you are a manager of your home, consider that much of this world's good has been traditionally done by women at home whose children are grown. You might choose to forgo getting a job simply because your children are out of the house and people expect you to do something, anything. You are still needed in our home. Likewise, you are needed to fill roles that have traditionally been done by women of mid-life and beyond. You might, for example, unofficially mentor young wives and moms in your area, do volunteer and church work, get involved in service to your neighborhood or city, help out the elderly in your neighborhood, etc. The possibilities are endless.

In our era, we are not as limited in our choice of vocation or avocation as we once were. Before you settle for grinding a way at a job you no longer enjoy, investigate what other possibilities you can explore. Remember, though, that it is best not to quit your current job until you know for certain that you do have replacement income. Also remember that it is not always possible to do exactly what we want to do. Sometimes, we have to work at something we don't particularly enjoy in order to provide for our families, and, sometimes, we do have to stick with a career path that no longer suits us. A job that pays the bills is a blessing in this economy, whether it's a dream job or not.


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