Encore Careers: How Much Money is Enough for Your Encore Life?

“How much money is enough?” is a great question to ponder in your journey to an encore career. And, even more important if your retirement nest egg has taken a serious hit in the current economic climate.

It’s a question that first came to my attention when I read Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez 10 years ago. I’m personally not wild about their financial advice, and some of the suggestions are a bit too stringent for my taste. But, they really helped me come to terms with the idea that, at the time, I was “making a dying” (meaning my work left me depleted and demoralized) instead of making a living, and helped me to simplify my life in ways that made me feel not deprived.

So before you leap into your encore career, take this one important step:

Define exactly how much money (stuff, lifestyle, etc.) is enough for you, and, then figure out how much you “have to” make. You may discover you need far less than you think.

As with many of you, money is often an issue at Retire Retirement Boot Camp. Interesting how many participants are stuck in “I like my current lifestyle exactly the way it is, thank you very¬† much!” And, equally interesting how that conversation shifts after they’ve defined their top values.

Many participants realize that what they thought was delight in their current lifestyles, was more like zoning out in an all-too-comfortable comfort zone. When they get in touch with what is most important to them right now in their lives, they’re amazed at how much of their current lifestyle no longer fits. Then, they’re able to let go of some of their old ideas about what they really want and need, and started to get excited about the kind of encore careers that would align with their values, and give them a new, happier, simplified version of their current lives.

Ask yourself “What do I really need and want?” The answer may surprise you.

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