We have a baby boomer comeback story to share with you. It’s by Chris Vaca, who found himself in his fifties, and broke. But that didn’t stop him from moving on. His personal motto is the title of his newest book: “Age Should Never Be An Excuse For Not Succeeding.” And there’s more.
So there I was, a 56-year-old owner of a successful mortgage business. Life was good, I was making nice money and the future looked bright when all of a sudden, WHAM, I woke up one day to the housing meltdown and this great recession we are still in. Life got pretty rough after that, going from doing six loans a month to five loans a year.
It was devastating on my finances, as you can well imagine. However, I was keeping the business together as best I could, living on Ramon Noodles and using what savings I had to stay afloat. My main goal was to keep the business going until the economy came back, which as you know never fully happened. Everything that I worked for was no more.
What made matters worse was that I used all my savings trying to keep the business going, along with maxing out my credit cards. Therefore, I could no longer pay the rent, and I was evicted from my apartment. On top of that, I also had my car repossessed. Could it get any worse? Read on.
So then, there Iwas, 58-years-old, no place to live, no business, no job, no income, no money, no nothing. Needless to say, it wasn’t exactly the high point of my life. What do I do next? Well, I did something I never thought I would do, and really did not want to do.
But I was left with little choice. I put my tail between my legs and called my ex-wife (how humiliating do you think that was?). Fortunately, we were always on friendly terms, and she said I could stay with her until I got back on my feet. I’ll tell you, I remember that day like it was yesterday. There I am, standing at my ex-wife’s front door, head bowed and bags in hand; I felt just like a whipped puppy. It was without a doubt probably the lowest point in my life. I cannot even explain the feelings I had, but they were not very goodfeelings, I can tell you that.
Losing everything at the age of 30 is bad, but when you are 58, so close to retirement, it is a hundred times worse. After the hurt of losing everything, along with the pain, the anger, the humiliation, and the fear, I realized I needed to stand up and get myself out of the hole I was in, because no one was going to do it for me.
Now, at age 60, I am an entrepreneur, public speaker, trainer, and author of four books. I also have a series of videos on YouTube called Over 50 And Broke and a website with the same name. Like the slogan says, age should never be an excuse for not succeeding.