â€œWhy are you here?â€ The man speaking at the front of the room pointed his finger at me. For a moment I considered pretending he meant the woman sitting next to me, but that finger didnâ€™t waffle even a little. I stopped breathing. As an introvert, being singled out in a room full of people is a nightmare that lingers far beyond the sound of the alarm clock.
I squirmed, sighed, and mumbled something like, â€œIâ€™m here to discover options available to midlife women seeking to start their own business.â€ It was a pretty decent answer considering all the saliva in my mouth had disappeared.
The speaker retracted his finger. I could breathe again, but was a lot more careful about that darn eye contact. Social discomfort aside, I learned a few interesting things at this Womenâ€™s Venture meeting.
For instance, 50,000 businesses start each year in Minnesota. Yay! 80 percent fail within 5 years. Boo! And while weâ€™re conditioned to believe itâ€™s youthful energy igniting all of those businesses, statistically itâ€™s the baby boomers who are once again shaking things up. Yay! Womenâ€™s Venture, Score, AARP, and the Small Business Association all have programs, training, and help for those of us who are looking to make the second half of life about dreams and not stagnating.
As I grow Aging Schmaging, I search for advice, help, and a network that supports my vision. Finding free resources and people extending their hands to help me do just that is phenomenal.
How about you?
What will your sunset look like? Who supports your goals? Please share with the rest of us!