Too young to retire. Too old to be hired. 

Does that phrase describe your current professional paradox? If so, you are not alone.

We launched LEANING OUT with a singular focus on supporting late-career Boomer professional women who were leaning out — going from a full-throttle career to their post-career Primetime. However, through our research and our events we discovered another all-important group who were also leaning out. One we had not previously considered. They are the (roughly) 45–55-year-old cohort of professional women who have been prematurely ‘aged out’ of their careers.

This month’s blog author Rita Silvan is one of those women. At the top of the fashion publishing world as Editor-in-Chief of Elle Canada (How many of us can quote personal advice from Karl Lagerfeld as Rita does in her post?) her fashion world career ended abruptly when, in her words, she was ‘too young to retire, but too old to be hired’.

Rita’s story resonates with so many stories we’ve heard of mid-career disruption, where expertise is discarded in favor of youth and justified with veiled ageism phrases like ‘We’re hiring a digital native’ or ‘We need a millennial mindset’. 

But like the best mid-career reinvention stories, Rita finds her passion and her purpose by leaning out from one career to embrace another. She tells her story with humorous candor and offers a ‘Five Alive’ list — five pointers for building resilience through adversity. Enjoy the read!

P.S. Interested in attending a virtual networking salon? Check out the Spotlight section for more information.




Want to Network with a Brain Trust of Senior Professional Women?


Networking with like-stage, like-minded professional women is one of the activities LEANING OUT followers have valued most. Salons have provided an attractive format for exploration and we are now offering them virtually. 

Please let us know if you would be interested in attending a complimentary LEANING OUT virtual salon, hosted by Trish Wheaton, and facilitated by Ilene Nathanson. In the salon we will explore attitudes and preparedness around career transition and potential paths forward. 

At this point we are trying to gauge interest only. Date to be determined. 


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