Thursday, March 11, 2010

The times...they are a-changing!

"The future has a way of arriving unannounced. " George Will

"Baby Boomers" were the subject of Tom Brokaw's latest TV documentary which aired on March 4th.  While the program focused more on the "notorious" of the Boomer generation (Woodstock, etc.) while skimming over what life was like for those of us in the background, it did bring up some precarious predicaments for boomers today and in the future.  The projections for Boomers are quite thought-provoking.

The statistics show that a great percentage of Baby Boomers have spent most of what we earned.  Saving from our paychecks and making deposits into 401K plans were a low priority so nest eggs tend to be less than adequate for the costs that lie ahead of us.   We have an appetite for excess.  The Boomer middle class tended to live like the upper class....upscale homes, luxury cars, and multiple credit cards.  This lifestyle seems to have caught up with us.  Today more than 4 million Baby Boomers are currently unemployed.  The reality of a more than dismal economy is here.  In the workplace we now compete for jobs with "techno kids" 35 years younger than we are.

Where does this leave Boomers?  We're going to once again, change the world.  We drive the economy, and because we are aging in great numbers, facing a costly medical care crisis and experiencing a downturn in income, our decisions will impact the world.  We are being forced to be creative in how we live.  Boomers are learning to exist on less.  We are downsizing, embracing the minimalism of our parents, (not necessarily by choice, but by necessity,) and grappling with what's really important in life.  For many boomers, the memories of being raised very simply in a small home and sharing one bathroom with parents and siblings, doesn't seem as bad as once thought before the foreclosure sign went up or the pink slip got handed out at work.

We're starting to see Boomer trends change and I for one am rather curious to see how our resourceful generation will handle the certain challenges that lie ahead of us. 

What kinds of Boomer trends do you see emerging?  I'd like to hear from you.


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