10 Realities About Life After 50


1.Planning is essential.   Don’t wait.  Develop a personal plan and run it by someone you trust for a reality check.

2.The pace of change is accelerating.   Don’t expect it to slow down.   Make decisions preparing for a few curves you can’t see coming.

3.No one’s life happens entirely according to plan.  Your whole plan won’t fail just because one element doesn’t work out.

4.Thriving beyond 50 requires special abilities.   Take a close look at people you admire who are doing well in later life, think about what are they particularly good at, and see how those skills apply to your own life.

5. Let go of the old language and images that are no longer true. Retirement, Golden Years, No More Jobs are clichés; they’re outdated and, for many people, no longer true. Create the phraseology that will reflects your new reality.

6. What we were good at in the past may not be relevant in the future.   Leave behind (with appreciation) the skills that worked before but don’t serve you well now. Your experience as a leader may not be welcomed in a part-time, stopgap gig.  Your approach to parenting may not be appreciated by your adult kids.

7.Our situations and companions will change as we age – often without notice.   Tell the people you care about how much you appreciate them.   Do it today.   Do it tomorrow, too.  And don’t stop making new friends.

8.Aging cannot be solved like a problem.  Don’t waste your energy trying to solve, deny or fight getting older.    Be the best you can be whatever your age.

9. Quality of life, not aging, is the primary focal point of our futures.   We’re going to live longer and be  healthier than any other generation before us.  But a high quality of life at 65 doesn’t start at 64.  When you plan for the future, don’t just focus on money and work.  Look at how, where and with whom you’ll want to spend your time.

10.  No one-size-fits-all answer is the key to thriving after 50.    You are the pioneer of your own life; it’s up to you to figure out what works best for your specific goals, dreams and situation.


—George H. Schofield, Ph.D.


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