In every Second Act Stories interview, we ask the question “What advice would you give to someone considering a Second Act?” Here are some of the responses from podcast episodes:

GE corporate executive turned Jesuit priest

“So the first thing would be paying attention to your deepest desires…What gets you excited? What motivates you? What is appealing? What do you find romantic? What do you find interesting?… You have to understand those desires in the light of your talents and your skills and your background. But usually, that’s not the restriction. The restriction is usually people don’t allow themselves to dream.”

Father James Martin

Trial lawyer turned nature photographer

“Do it no matter how stiff the odds might seem. You can do it, anyone can do it. You can do it even if you want to be a caregiver instead of a waitress or if you want to leave a job as a medical doctor and become a fishing guide, you can do it. Do what feeds you. Do what makes you feel spiritually together.”

Richard Turner

Public relations agency owner turned actress

“When you take classes, you not only get good, solid information about what you want to do, but you meet other people who have the same interest, and those people become resources for you as you move forward.”

Judi Schindler

Radio disc jockey turned economic developer

“I’m in favor of people doing something anything that makes them happier and gives them a better life…Sometimes you have to make a bold decision, and you have to take that leap.”

Buddy Rizer

Engineer turned youth basketball coach

“You really got to be persistent… If you don’t have the persistence, if you can’t knock down walls, you know, and just face a lot of rejection at first then it’s not going to work.”

Joe Bock

Costume designer turned horticultural therapist

“Find something that speaks to you. Just think about what swirls around in your head that maybe is a little bit like, “What can I do about that thing? How can I help this? What skills do I have that I can share with someone else that might help that problem or this problem?” And then don’t take no for an answer. You know, just push into that thing.”

Deborah Shaw

Journalist turned bakery owner (with his wife Laura)

“It takes an enormous amount of effort and there is risk involved in it. But once you get over that, it’s a pretty amazing life experience that I think is hard to turn down. It’s been pretty exciting.”

Steve Syre

Investment banker turned public school teacher

“It’s like having a kid. You have to be ready to turn your whole life upside down. Nothing will be the same again. So find something that you really love…and everyday you’ve got a reason to get up and go somewhere.”

Dayna English

Corporate lawyer turned Methodist minister

“The biggest, most important bit of advice that I would give is it’s never too late to start. And I felt initially, I felt going into the ministry in my 50s was gonna be something that would be really difficult… But at the same time, I thought if I didn’t do it now, when am I gonna do it? My advice would be whether you’re 50, 60, or 70, you’ve got to do it. Because if it’s been nagging at you for years, for decades even that you need to make a change, you’ve got to make the change when you can.”

Mark Salvacion