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About the Author


Helga Hayse

Helga Hayse educates people on the role that money plays in family relationships. Her latest book Money, Love & Legacy: Conversations That Matter Between Generations is about the urgency for adult children and their parents to open the intergenerational dialogue they need to have about financial, legal, emotional, medical and end-of-life issues before it’s too late. She recounts her personal experience with transforming the pain of her own unfinished business into regenerative legacy between herself and her parents.

Her previous book “Don’t Worry about a Thing, Dear” - Why Women Need Financial Intimacy helps women understand why education about marital finances is vital for their protection if marriage ends.

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Best Boomer Towns Columns

Eric’s Job Hunting Over 40 Series Continued


For executive careers, choosing the right clothing can be confusing.  While most office environments have now skewed toward “business casual” clothes, dressing for an interview is usually a bit more formal.  

For men and women, a good quality tailored suit in dark blue, black or grey is the most appropriate choice.  A white or blue shirt or blouse projects businesslike seriousness.

Shoes should be good quality and polished.  Socks look best when they are darker than pants and match in color.  Over-the-calf socks prevent distracting displays of bare leg for men.  For women, bare legs are more the norm now than not.

Accessories too should be selected with an eye toward understated elegance.  Men should avoid wearing a plastic sports watch with a suit.  Women should steer away from gaudy jewelry and oversized earrings.   This being said, choose something that will make you stand out from the others interviewing for the job---a cool tie or a scarf that adds a splash of color.

There are dozens of fashion magazines that offer guidance on dressing appropriately for business.  Take some time to review the latest styles and, if you can afford it, make the investment in one or two new outfits.


During the time you’re out of work---now lasting on average more than 90 days---take this opportunity to develop a new fitness and nutrition plan.  For every five pounds you are overweight (and most people over 40 are overweight) you look about a year older---not good when you are already over 40.

Being out of work is an ideal time to get back into shape and become more competitive in the job market as well.  Being fit will give you more energy, improve your mental acuity, give you more confidence, help you sleep better and, of course, improve your looks.  Not a bad payoff for something you should have been doing all along anyway.

Take time to remove all the fake, processed junk foods from your home.  Plan a diet rich in fruits and vegetables for the fastest weight loss.   Amazingly, fewer than 4% of all adults eat the recommended 3 ½ cups to five cups of fruits and vegetables every day for optimum health.  Add some fish, poultry and lean meat to your diet but treat it as a garnish rather than a main meal.   Drink a minimum of five glasses of water every day; your skin will look younger.  If you have the will and discipline to stick to this diet you will almost immediately notice an increase in energy, alertness and overall well-being.


Next, add some exercise to your plan.  Exercise is the other half of the good health equation.  Start by walking two or three miles a day.  If your physician says it’s OK, start jogging or running.  Take up a sport like swimming or tennis for its aerobic benefits.  The pounds will begin melting away.

To really look good, add some resistance exercise to your health and fitness plan.  Join a health club or the YMCA and pump some iron.  It won’t take long before you see results.  The combination of diet, aerobic exercise and resistance exercise will not only make you look much better, your energy and attitude will vastly improve as well.  And your improved looks and confidence will help you find a job.

In 90 days you can radically transform yourself.  Now is the best time ever to do it.

Taking action will also help improve your mental outlook.  Being unemployed is one of life’s top ten most stressful events.  Job seekers with positive energy will be more successful in their job hunt, because people are drawn to optimistic, energetic, positive people.

Your mood during the job search is something you’ll have to manage carefully.   Do whatever it takes.  Join a support group, take up yoga or meditation, get counseling and don’t withdraw from your family or friends.  You need to be engaged with others more than ever now.

As soon as you get a negative thought, forcefully banish it from your mind.  The experts all say that with practice it’s possible to replace negativity with positive thinking.  After awhile it becomes a habit.  It’s a habit with positive results too---positive thinkers make more money, have fewer illnesses and even live longer.  They also enjoy more successful careers.


Getting enough sleep is important to your health, alertness and attitude.  Worries over a job loss or finances can be a cause of insomnia.  But losing sleep will only make it harder to get back on your feet.  Again, the exercise and diet will help, but take further action to insure you’re getting enough rest.

A few tips to a better nights’ sleep:  Don’t watch TV before bedtime.  Read or meditate or make love (a personal favorite).  Don’t snack.  Make your bedroom and bed as inviting as you can.  Keep the room temperature between 65 and 68 degrees.  And go to sleep at the same time every night.  Stay away from sleep medications; they often do more harm than good in the long run.

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