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Starting Your Own Business at Midlife: The Secret to Late-Career Job Joy

Starting Your Own Business at Midlife: The Secret to Late-Career Job Joy | NextTribe

We’re living longer, but now the question becomes, How do we live better? The Harvard Business Review recently discovered something: When people late in their careers pitch it all to start a business or work for themselves, their quality of life dramatically increases – even though they are much less likely to be able to put in the years required for that business to turn a profit. Yup, starting your own business in midlife might just make you happier.

What?! Why?! How does making less money make anyone happy? The researchers muse that older workers probably have a nest-egg that allows them to enjoy their “retirement business” more than if their existence depended on it. But there is another element that rings true: This late-career entrepreneurship helps people make a phased withdrawal from the workforce, to see what life off the 9-to-5 feels like.

Many of us have experienced ageism in the workplace and find ourselves unwilling to wallow in it.

What’s more, the report says, “It may be a way to benefit from increased opportunities for self-realization.” Translation: After years of toiling away for someone else, many of us have experienced ageism in the workplace and found ourselves unwilling to wallow in it. And realizing that life is short, we’re ready to dive in and follow our bliss.

My sister Sarah bagged her ESL teacher life and started a dog-boarding business on an old farm in New Jersey, surrounded by her flock of goats happily “meeh-ing.” Having control of her work life has been incredibly satisfying, just like the fancy Harvard research suggests. See? Starting your own business doesn’t seem like such a crazy idea after all.

–Amy Keyishian

So we’re curious: Tell us in the comments what business you would start if you could–or did!

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