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Dear Sheila,

I’m a single mom with three adult children. I have put my career and financial goals and my personal needs on hold for most of my life. I’ve always been the one everyone relies on to get things done or the one that people come to for advice. I returned to school later in life to complete my degree while helping other family members.

Now, I’m 50 years old. I’ve started over completely, including financially. I am having to make up for lost time on my retirement savings, when my career has also been downsized.

Do you have any advice on how to create short-­term financial gains while saving up for retirement late in the game?

–Making Up for Lost Time

“It’s not knowing what to do; It’s doing what you know.” -Tony Robbins

Dear Making Up For Lost Time,

The beauty of the time you’ve spent helping your family and friends, and being involved in other people’s lives, is now you have a Ph.D. in doing all of those things for other people. Although you were downsized in your career, you’ve had another career in helping all of these people. One of the things you could think about doing is figuring out a way for you to be compensated for the things you’ve helped people with for free for all these years. There are lots of parents that need help with caring for their young children, people that need help with elder care, and people that need help organizing.

I want you to make a list of all the things you’ve done, the ways you’ve contributed to your family and friends. Have you done potlucks? Do you cook? What have you done that you did so well that people kept asking for you to do it for them, and you happily poured your heart and passion into it? You didn’t really put your life on hold; it sounds like you dedicated your life to helping out your family and your loved ones. How can you help other people that are so busy, they don’t have the time or experience? Maybe you could teach people the life skills you’ve acquired well over the years.

For instance, I had a client who baked cakes in elementary school and middle school, and she made the most amazing cakes. And then she stopped. She got married, she had kids, but she would always give these cakes out as gifts to other people. And they had a professional design. So she started her own cake-­baking business. And she made so much money in this business, she started doing gluten-­free cakes, and they were sugar­-free for people who have diabetes, or for people who were dieting. Now that’s her full­-time career, her full-­time business, and she has her own staff. Think about having fun with this, explore all of your gifts and talents, and start playing with your finances that way. Don’t be afraid to ask all of those people that you’ve helped to help you. It’s okay to be vulnerable and ask for help. Because you’ve helped so many people, they’ll be happy to help you to get started again.

As Always, I wish you

“Life, Love, Laughter & Light!”

–Sheila Mac

Sheila Mac Show LLC.. has a dedicated media department. Members of the press are welcome to contact us regarding Sheila Mac Show, Bootstraps & Bra Straps  or any of the Sheila Mac Show Companies 

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