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For a few months now, we’ve been reporting on the good ideas and remarkable participation we’ve seen in the THINK Prize 16 Financial Longevity Challenge. But now, as we round the corner into the final stages of our Challenge, we invite you to see firsthand what reimagining life after 50 looks like.

Like most people about to embark on an innovation journey, we began this process with a few hypotheses. Maybe you have some too: People over 50 are concerned about retirement, for instance. Or, People over 50 worry about dwindling career options.

The ideas that have come out of our challenge reflect a much richer reality. Yes, people over 50 are concerned about retirement. They want better career options. But the magic of innovation lies in going beyond incremental solutions to something more powerful:

50+ Maker Spaces

If the idea of pursuing hands-on, creative work appeals to you, this might be your answer to conventional retirement. “Maker Spaces are popping up in cities all over the world as the DIY tenet continues to gain traction. The Spaces are becoming education centers and social gathering places and project collaboration is common. There are financial rewards for those who follow through with selling the goods and art they produce.” Maker spaces might include co-living opportunities, meaning that participants can live an entirely new life vision for their retirement years. Instead of ceasing work and living in relative isolation, they can collaborate and co-exist with fellow craftspeople doing work they enjoy.

Home Here and There

Many people dream of experiencing life in other parts of the country or world. Once untethered from the demands of going to an office each day, would-be nomads could create new ways to roam: “Home here and there allows people 50 and older to have a place to live with less obligation and more opportunity for travel and volunteer work. They are able to rotate to different locations for extended time periods.”

Rightsize

“Yesterday I watched my dad salute his crew and walk out of the firehouse for the last time. Over pancakes, as he laid out his plans for the upcoming year, I realized the weight of what was about to change for him and our family. His journey toward that final day of work at the firehouse was a carefully planned strategy to fulfill his goals that spanned over thirty years and three jobs. In the next six months, he’s planning to go move to another state, which will entail a home sale and minimizing possessions to make this transition as easy as possible.

“Career transitions, including retirement, involve making crucial decisions that are financial as well as emotional. How can retirees do things that they enjoy and care about while being financially secure? The dilemmas are big: retirees must evaluate their lifestyle, weigh their personal values, assess their budgets, and prioritize how they want to spend their money, time and energy. When equipped with the right tools and information, this process could be an exciting, energizing time in life.”

Rightsize proposes a platform to guide homeowners through the process of resizing their lives, using profile building, AI financial planning and reliable information. By its very existence, it recognizes the monumental financial, logistical and emotional shift that occurs when someone stops working and looks to construct a new reality.

The THINK Prize 16 Financial Longevity Challenge is in a new phase now. The THINK team will be reviewing and evaluating ideas and looking to narrow the field as we move toward our final THINK Prize winners. At this point, we wish to recognize the collective imagination of our innovators so far. Your vision – your ability to consult, dream, collaborate and exceed expectations – is an inspiration to us all. The age of 50 is a milestone. The road beyond it has never looked so inviting.