“Do you need a retirement coach?” was a recent article on money.cnn.com by Paul Keegan a Fortune Magazine contributor. The article covers a coaching session with a successful retired business man named Bud, who has it all. After 38 years of working, he’s has a great girlfriend and the time to spend with her, his kids, grand kids, as well as doing things like traveling and enjoying his pool and multiple sports cars; but Bud says “I felt lost.” referring to his retirement.
There is a massive population of retirees facing the same circumstances and with it, the same feelings. Why is this? Well for starters here in the great USA, we culturally associate our value with our career. We are taught, we are the value of what we do and who we provide for. So, although we are taught to work hard in order to be able to comfortably enjoy our retirement. Most retire and have similar experiences to Bud. A feeling of being lost, unhappy or unsettled.
As has always been the case with baby boomers, they shift the entire market with their dollars and today going forward, those dollars will be looking for purpose, happiness and fulfillment. What’s different with baby boomers, as compared to other generations looking for the same things? Besides their obvious collective purchasing power, in terms of consumption, they’ve already been there and done that. Most of them have bought, owned and sold homes, cars, and every other gadget they’ve wanted. They’ve already had their children and some of them have also had the vacations and experiences they’ve wanted. The rest of the baby boomers will get those experiences out of the way in the first five years of retirement and with the average retiree living 20 years after their working life ends, that leaves a lot of time to fill.
Now, with all that consumption under their proverbial belts, they will be coming into retirement a little wiser than previous generations, about what money and stuff does and doesn’t provide. Now wiser and knowing that the next eight blade razor won’t buy them love and the next Subaru won’t make their family life any more happy…
What will these boomers be looking to for their happiness?
It’s a big questions and it will be coming from some very successful people, just like Bud. People who are well adjusted to our work focused and title driven society. Life Coaches are the only field trained to work with these kinds of people and handle these kinds of questions. Psychologists, therapists, counselors and even doctors are all trained to work with people who are falling behind “normal” they are trained to look for problems, disorders, psychosis and illness.
Baby boomers will be looking into the growing field of life coaching for the type of help which, no generation before has had the luxury of looking.
They will be looking for happiness, fulfillment, peace, passion and purpose! Because of their unique generational experiences, coming into their retirement years, they are really the first generation to be asking provocative questions like…
“What’s the purpose of life, my life?
What am I here for now that I no longer need to earn a living or work to support myself and others?
So as the baby boomers have done so many times before, they will drive the market to cater to their needs for purpose, passion, power, love, and freedom in this new phase of their lives and development. We’d be wise to watch what the baby boomers demand in this new phase. They will affect more than the way we all look at retirement. These normal, successful and wise people are not in need of the ‘problem focused’ services of the past. This is why I believe more and more successful American retirees will be turning to Life Coaches verses the consumer products with empty promises. I assert they will shift the way this entire country looks at their work life as well!