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Wellbeing / Work styles

Restarting after 60: My tips for eternal youth

I never really thought I’d have cause to relaunch 30 years into my solo journey, but as us seniorpreneurs dominate the startup scene, I should have seen it coming. Here’s how I’m approaching the challenge.

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Not only am I on the cusp of launching an email newsletter with less people than I see at the bus stop and promoting a new podcast with a smaller following than the Australian cricket team, I’m also getting used to working er, alone.

Why the big change? This may explain things.

So what has all this to do with staying young? Well, frankly if I look around my office and see how I’ve set things up, it’s all looking a tad ‘last year’ and badly in need of a refresh. I’ve been flying solo long enough to realise that what sits behind me, is what I’ll project up front. It’s time to rejuvenate.

"I’ve been flying solo long enough to realise that what sits behind me, is what I’ll project up front."

The way I’m tackling this is to review and incrementally improve key areas of my work. I guess it’s the solo business equivalent of a new haircut and wardrobe makeover. (Both of which are on my radar too incidentally).

1. Upgrade my tools for the trade

I’m planning improvements to my desk, computer, printer, filing systems and phone. Not all at once you understand, but over the course of this year. If you’re not the best I can afford, you don’t deserve to be in my toolbox.

Don’t look so worried dear Aeron Chair. You’re not going anywhere.

2. Sharpen up my work zone

Let there be more light. I’ve already buffed my glasses, cleaned my windows, and nudged the intensity of my bulbs up a bit and what a difference it’s made.

Next up, I’ve a major de-clutter project to finish before I re-hang my artworks, move stuff around and pop the fake gerberas under the tap for a quick rinse.

Alongside this I’ve funked up my music a bit, created new playlists and am starting every day with a yummy little Headspace meditation. Om.

3. Health and wellbeing

I’m delighted to report that my yoga practice is firmly back on the mat too and stats suggest an upward trajectory in my number of downward dogs. There’s little to beat the wholesale alignment of one’s chakras, as I’m sure you’ll agree.

Plus I’ve recently undergone a full, nowhere-is-off-limits health check and am trying really, really hard to consume less food and eat slower. No, really.

If we’ve met, you’ll know I’ve long been a daily walker and I’m hitting the accelerator a bit on that too.

4. Professional development

Leaving the comfort of a business I’ve resided happily in for over a dozen years, has meant stepping into masses of new stuff. Much to my own surprise, I’ve designed and created my own new website, written all sorts of plans and devoured a stack of new books and courses.

One side effect is that my ‘book mountain’ continues to err on the intimidating, but luckily I know what to do and have logged a few days of speedy study into my diary.

I’ve also enrolled in some age-specific planning, taking advantage of these Government information sessions. I’ll let you know how it goes.

5. Community

Starting with Jane (poor love) and close friends I’m connecting more in real life. This has involved scheduling regular coffee catch-ups, holding meetings in the park and generally saying ‘yes’ to more invites.

I’ve also started using the phone more to talk to people. Who’d have thought that thing in your pocket also handles voice dialogue? Amazing.

6. My support crew

Finally I’m buried in a detailed review of my little outsource team. Most have a hearbeat, but some are apps or memberships. I plan to look closely at who does what (or what does what) and make adjustments as necessary.

I’ve never thrown money around, but I can’t help noticing that a mass of micro-payments, once herded into a corner translate into one big outgoing and that needs to change.

So there you have it, my plan to front up afresh to my new world of work. Once I weave a liberal splattering of words and phrases like ‘curated’, ‘amplify’ and ‘pivot’ into my daily dialogue I’ll be so new, bright and shiny I’ll likely start entering a pitchfest or two.

Do you need to stir things up a bit? Make a pledge below.

Robert Gerrish

is the founder of Flying Solo and helps soloists stay upbeat and energised. He’s recently published The 1-Minute Commute, is a presenter and facilitator and works one-on-one with those needing a refresh. Find out more about his skills and services and his Olympus Trip 35 camera side hustle or connect on LinkedIn.

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