This article was originally published on May 19, 2014 on Boomerswork.com former blog, BoomersRant.
Baby boomers in the workforce are in a tight spot. On one hand, it’s easy to get burned out if you’ve been working for decades in the same field. On the other hand, work can be a fun way to be social and make some extra money. But who wants to go back to the full-time grind? The following are some ways you can continue working without a full-time commitment.
An alternative to working full time for baby boomers is to work part time. This does not simply include taking on work that is only two or three days a week. You may find that working five days a week for four-hour periods of time is enough to keep you occupied and engaged but not enough to be exhausting. Part-time opportunities are in a variety of fields beyond the low-wage jobs that come to mind. Instead of being a retail greeter, you could work in a legal office or another professional setting.
Baby boomers in the workforce don’t necessarily need to get “a job” to work. If you have skills that can translate into consulting work for clients, you may find that self-employment is extremely fulfilling. Some days you won’t work at all, while other days you can get a charge out of helping to shape the perfect project. Online services can match you with these kinds of short-term opportunities.
There’s no better time than now to put your lifetime of experience to work by mentoring other professionals. Mentoring helps younger workers, teams and even startups develop their talents as they benefit from the leadership expertise and set of experiences boomers bring to a workplace — event on a volunteer or part-timer basis.
If you have ever considered getting an advanced degree, this can lead to a fellowship.Fellowships include working with other highly educated individuals, and the setting is often based on research and broadening the scope of human understanding of a particular topic. While there might not be much money in a fellowship, this is a chance to advance both your personal learning and that of the entire world. Again, it is temporary and not a full-time deal, so striving toward a fellowship can be a great way to enjoy learning in a professional context.
For boomers in the workforce who don’t like the constant work schedule, being on call can bridge the gap. When you are on call, you may have little work for a given week. This is almost like seasonal work, but it can pick up at any time. There’s a certain excitement to knowing that you could be called at any time.
Job sharing requires excellent communication, but it may be the most flexible way to stay in the workforce other than freelancing. Share a full-time job with someone else. You may find that your skills are perfect for half of a position.
Just because you’re “retired” doesn’t mean you can’t still work. Just find a way that fits you.