S4-EP11: Renowned Editor Richard Eisenberg on Taking Practical First Steps into “Unretirement”

Feb 25, 2022


Debbie talks to Richard Eisenberg, former managing editor at Next Avenue, about his pragmatic first steps into “unretirement” at age 65.



Debbie talks to Richard Eisenberg, a renowned editor, veteran journalist and author who has covered careers and personal finance for 40+ years. Richard recently “unretired,” as he puts it, from his 10-year run as managing editor of Next Avenue, the comprehensive online news source for Boomer and Gen X Americans.

As a journalist, he’s made it his mission to cover money, work and purpose in a way that is useful and practical and lessens readers’ stress. Debbie wondered how he would apply this approach to his own next chapter. Not surprisingly, he has a pragmatic plan for how to put together the pieces of “what’s next” for himself.

He tells us that his unretired life will include some work – writing and editing – but as a freelance. He also wants to mentor, travel, and spend more time with his sons on the West Coast. That’s the plan so far but how it will all fit together is yet to be seen.

And that’s a little scary.

No matter.  As you’ll hear, Richard is okay with taking small steps and experimenting to find the right balance. In other words, he is practicing what he’s been preaching to readers for decades. Debbie agrees with much of what Richard says so there’s not much drama in this episode but it’s a lovely and relaxed conversation.

He and Debbie talk about the persistence of ageism in our society and the deeply entrenched “decline” narrative. And they delve into what has become a new meme: the 100-year-life and what it means from a policy and financial perspective. Richard reminds Debbie that health-span is a better concept than age span.


Mentioned in this episode or useful:


Richard’s new “Unretired” column for Market Watch


Selection of Richard’s articles for Next Avenue




Also mentioned:


Note from Debbie

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Thanks to our media partners

Encore.org, our newest media partner, is an ideas and innovation hub tapping the talent of those 50+ as a force for good. Founder and CEO Marc Freedman is an award-winning social entrepreneur and author, most recently, of How to Live Forever: The Enduring Power of Connecting the Generations. Looking for a great gap-year transition program? Check out Encore Fellowships, which match skilled, seasoned professionals with social-sector organizations in high-impact, paid assignments.


Modern Elder Academy is a program dedicated to navigating mid-life transitions. MEA, based in Baja California, Mexico, provides the place and the tools to start reframing your lifetime of experience. Grow whole, not old. Founder Chip Conley is a New York Times bestselling author, award-winning hospitality entrepreneur and a rock star of the mid-life transition movement. His newest book is Wisdom @ Work: the Making of a Modern Elder.


Next For Me is an important new resource for the 50+ crowd focused on rewriting life. Taking a gap year or timeout may be the best way to figure out "what's next" when you're in this stage of life. Founder Jeff Tidwell explains, Next For Me "connects and inspires our generation to evolve our post-50 lives through new work, a new purpose, or a new social contribution."