“Midlife is your best and last chance to become the real you.” The Harvard Business Review gets it. New York’s Agency Five-O gets it. Do you?
“Midlife is your best and last chance to become the real you,” declares the Harvard Business Review. “A new age group is entering midlife—and some members are tackling it differently than those in generations past,” relates the Wall Street journal.
It just cracks me up that the so-called “expert analysts” are now finally getting on board with the idea that this HUGE group of people now entering their era of midlife, empty nests, retirement, and on the leading edge of the baby boom, elder care, is going to shake up and redefine this stage of life just like we did all the ones before it.
In a meeting of the American Advertising Federation I attended recently a presentation by New York City Agency Five-O’s Brent Bouchez made me want to stand and cheer. Of course I didn’t because I was in a roomful of 20-something advertising hotshots looking a little bit confused and a tiny bit indignant. Brent’s topic was ‘Why 39-64 is the new 18-35 any why you need to get there first.”
Finally. Advertising that understands it’s not in Kansas anymore, and the so-called “sweet spot” of advertising has moved from the age the boomers used to be to the age they are now. Again I say, “Duh.” And, it appears, some of the smarter ones seem to be changing their tune.
Brent showed us a few commercials to illustrate this point and I realized (having studied the effect of subliminal advertising quite a bit in college) that the subliminal downer this across-the-board, off-target focus must be doing on all our middle aged psyches. “I feel invisible” one survey respondent said. “I feel like I disappeared,” said another. Stil more interesting is that the commercial he showed that depicted peace, joy, meaning and introspection still appeals to the younger audience without offending the 39-64s.
Why is this? “Because everyone, even the younger groups, aspire to that world,” Brent explained. My favorite quote Brent used, though, actually came from Alec Baldwin (not someone I would normally quote about anything, but nevertheless, his comment aligns): “The day I turned 50 I realized I had plenty of time, just none to waste.”
As Brent and Agency Five-O are quick to point out and are definitely tuned in to: Today in America, the average head of household is 52. The average new car buyer is 56. The average Mac user is 50. the average Amex card holder is 57. The fact is, these days all the decision making, all the buying power and all the money is in the hands of a more mature consumer.”
So not only has our personal stage shifted to put us right in the center of becoming the very best version of who we were meant to be as individuals, but it’s time to claim the world’s economic stage and drive the decisions that will keep us at the top of this game far into our sunset years.
Turning our conversation back to horses (as my conversations almost always do) it is also a time where we can enjoy our midlife horses as never before. Because of the factors brought to light by all of the above, combined with the economic challenges of recent years (but I prefer to think it’s more about our sheer numbers!) all kinds of horse events and activities are now springing up for us. Upper age barriers are being relaxed, adult and even some senior novice classes are being added in almost every discipline, and equipment and products are entering the marketplace every single day to help us enjoy our horses and follow our dreams regardless of any age barriers, real of imagined, that used to exist.
In Chapter 5 of The Smart Woman’s Guide to Midlife Horses, “Find Your Happy Trail” we explore some of these opportunities in hopes of reigniting your old horse dreams and encouraging you to get out there and take advantage of this unparalleled time, in history and in your own life, to take full advantage of this “last and best chance to become the real you.”
Got a story you’d like to tell? There’s nothing I like better that stories of reclaiming lost or forgotten dreams! We all need encouragement from time to time, and this is the place to tell our stories and cheer each other on as we take full advantage of where we are now to become the very best version possible of who we really are inside. Comment here, join us on Facebook, Tweet your thoughts and encouragement on this topic, share your competition videos on YouTube or drop me an email. I’d love to help add your story to our Midlife Horses Community!