I Used to Be Somebody: (Un)Retirement Lessons Learned

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Greg Schwem Interview: Stand-Up Comedian Finds His Third Act

Diana Landau | January 11, 2022

Carl interviews stand-up comedian Greg Schwem this week. Greg not only does stand-up comedy but he has performed on Jay Leno, with Celine Dion, and corporate gigs like Microsoft and United Airlines. Greg talks with us about his third act in the comedy world – as the creator/producer/director/writer/performer of a funny new YouTube show, “A Comedian Crashes Your Pad.” (Fun fact: Greg is also a kick-ass pickleball player!)

 

Greg grew up in middle-class Arlington Heights, a burb in Chicagoland. He says he gets his funny bone from his father, who was an electronic salesman. “You have to be funny to be successful in sales,” he says. Gutsy move: Greg was an introverted teen and not a big “joiner” until he performed stand-up for the first time at 16 at his high school. “Making people laugh has a lot of advantages socially!”

 

After graduating from Northwestern, he worked as a journalist, working for different media. At 24, he moved to Florida and started going to comedy clubs as something to do in the evenings. He soon discovered he enjoyed being a stand-up comedian more than he liked being a journalist. His parents were wary at first, but he says when he brought them to Las Vegas years later and they saw his name on the marquee, they realized he could make a living doing what he loved.
After two decades of performing as a stand-up and doing corporate gigs, he taught himself some new things. “COVID taught me some video skills,” Greg says. He began creating a new show about a comedian who visits people in their homes through one of the home-sharing sites, learning about their quirky lives. “When people are in their own element, you’d be surprised how much they open up.” Greg shares, “When I started it (the show) it was just me with an iPhone and a GoPro.” He now has a crew of one to help with the camera work.

 

Greg's career is still going strong as he re-invents himself. He also loves performing at senior communities. “It’s enjoyable to see people who've worked hard and are now in the second or third act of life. They really enjoy laughing—especially about themselves. It’s refreshing to see them really respond.” Greg still performs around the country when not working on his YouTube show and of course, winning at pickleball. “I am going out on a cruise ship soon and I can’t wait to see people of all ages in one room having fun!”

 

Greg’s (Un)retirement advice:
  • “Laugh! It’s so cliché but I believe laughing is good for your health and keeps your mind sharp. At this age, that’s so key.”
  • “It’s never too late to try something new. Also, don’t worry about what others think of you!”
  • “Look for the next FUN project! I don’t care where you are in your life, it’s out there.”
• More about Greg Schwem
• Sponsored by Capital Advantage
 
Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.

 

Tags:    blog   interview   unretirement   pickleball   comedy   stand-up   third-act  

2022 – Ready or Not, Here We Come!

Diana Landau | January 04, 2022
Even the challenges of the past two years have not stopped our podcast guests from moving forward. We checked in with some of our guests on the show to see what's new in their lives since the interview or if they have any words of wisdom to share with our audience.
Click and listen to the original interview...

 

Joe Pulizzi: Godfather of Content Marketing: Make Your Own Good Luck!
Well, I just can't retire. After selling my previous company, I launched The Tilt in April 2021, a newsletter for content creators who want to be content entrepreneurs. Now, just a few weeks ago, we announced CEX - Creator Economy Expo, an event for content creators held May 2-4, 2022 at the Arizona Grand Resort in Phoenix. Once an entrepreneur, always an entrepreneur.
 
 
 
Jim Roddy: Media Exec Turns Biz Coach with "The Walk on Method"
I’ve been named President & CEO of the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA), North America’s largest community of technology solution providers serving the retail, restaurant, grocery, and cannabis markets. I will continue to share insights on the RSPA Blog, host the award-winning RSPA Trusted Advisor podcast, and evangelize the lessons from my book The Walk-On Method To Career & Business Success. https://www.gorspa.org/rspa-announces-ceo-transition/
 
 
Mark Shaiken: Discovering his Wonderful "Afterlife" Beyond 41 Years of Law
I sent my latest legal thriller off to the editor, entitled “Automatic Stay.” In the new book, 3J and Pascale are back with six Kansas City jazz clubs that have somehow managed to survive the COVID-19 pandemic.
My hope for 2022 - peace, love, and health. A guy can dream, eh?

 

 

 

Richard Haiduck: Life Science exec Shifting Gears to First Time Author at 73
In writing my book, I had an opportunity to hear stories from retirees exploring their next stage and it was a privilege to hear their candid tales. However, it felt like something was missing. Wouldn't this group like to meet in person and share their yarns? So we had a party and people came from near and far and were able to actually meet each other. Half of the stories from the book were represented and a good time was had by all.

 

 

Val Haller: Music Maven with a Good Beat!
The pandemic continues to challenge the music industry with canceled concerts and festivals (we do both) – requiring creative pivots to bring artists & fans together. Our popular house concert series (Chicago) is in big demand and I’m posting daily about music news on social media (@valslist Facebook / Instagram / TikTok / Twitter). Our music community is vibrant and we'd love to have you! Whether you're a superfan or casual listener, we'll keep you in the know. sign up for our mailing list!

 

 

Chris Welles: Safari Vacation + Rhino = Life-Changing Second Act
My update on the business front has been challenging. COVID and the global supply channel issues have been a double whammy for American Rhino. While Rhinos don't hibernate, the business has certainly been slumbering. That’s not necessarily a bad thing as it enables us to kinda hit the reset button. We will be scaling back our product line substantially in 2022 and just concentrating on our sneakers which are our most popular item. We should be able to get a good supply of shoes and we will introduce new styles and colors in early 2022. Keep an eye for updates on kicks!! Happy new year to your loyal listeners from the Big Rhino.

 

Mike Branon: Construction Mogul Turns Zen Pickleball Instructor
My (UN)solicited (UN)retirement advice –– UNplug! Life is precious. Live more of it firsthand rather than through a device. Travel and chat and hug as much as possible (or as Covid allows). Free your mind from the political and social media noise living rent-free in your head. Live in the world you can actually affect — relationships, nature, your physical and emotional state. Sing, laugh, dance, and misbehave just a little. No regrets!

 

 

Caroline Ceniza-Levine: Creating Your Own Dream Job
Since the March episode, I have continued my (un)retirement schedule of balancing career coaching and travel. We did a 7200-mile road trip to New Mexico and Colorado to see the lunar eclipse, as well as a week in Costa Rica. On the coaching front, I’m hosting 12 Days of Coaching a free event that runs through Jan 6, 2022.

 

 

 

 

Melissa Davey: M. Night Shyamalan Chance Encounter Launches Film Director Second Act
After two years of Covid lockdowns, including paused filmmaking, canceled trips, and loss of the many face-to-face interactions I am accustomed to, I am very hopeful that the new year will bring us closer to a less restrictive life. I am looking forward to resuming plans for a second film and getting out to see so many friends and family that have been put on hold. Finally, a goal is a trip to a faraway land.

 

 

Dan Blank: Taking the Leap to Entrepreneurship!
In 2022, I am most looking forward to approaching my mission with fresh eyes. To consider anew how I can best help writers and creators, and double down on ensuring they find success in sharing what they create.

 

 

 

 

Cinde Dolphin Interview: Big-Time Beer Exec Becomes Unlikely Entrepreneur
"Bad news travels at the speed of light and good news travels like molasses" - Tracy Morgan.
My invention - the KILI Medical Drain Carrier - initiated the process for a US patent six years ago. December 12, 2021, the US Patent and Trademark Office notified us that we were awarded Patent #D938580. Within 48 hours an associate informed us of a knockoff product selling online - by a business partner!

 


Jerry Reynolds: Former NBA Exec, Broadcaster, and Sacramento Legend!
The last year has been very interesting as I do a twice a month podcast for an NBA and Kings fansite, The Kings Herald. Since I no longer work for the Kings, it is a lot easier to discuss the negatives of the team (a lot!) Also, I plan to spend a lot more time in Tahoe, as my wife of 54 years loves it there. Finally, I just try to make up for lost time with family, as there was too much travel over the years but I have plenty of time now. Me and my man cave recliner will continue our love affair. All the best and stay safe!

 

Andy Robin: Big Time High Tech Exec Living the Tapas Life
I’m working on my third round of self-taught French since I’m going to Bordeaux next year to visit some of the top chateaux. Vive l’vin!

 

 

 

 

 

Paul Ollinger: Former Facebook Exec Turns to Comedy
In 2022, I look forward to more engaging podcast conversations on Crazy Money and performing comedy all over the country. For those in or near Los Angeles, I will be headlining The Venice West in Venice on February 3 with very special guest Wendy Liebman. Tickets are available here.

 

 

 

 

Bob Franceschelli: Big Time Beer Exec Turns into Pickleball Fanatic
Bibi and I recently updated our long-standing Bucket List. Our sections include Religion, Family, Volunteer, Consulting/Work, Travel/Leisure, Sports/Health, Education, and Miscellaneous. A favorite “repeat” is readying to embark on our 4th year of making maple syrup from trees on our property. Reasonably easy, so fun, and rewarding: but clearly some of the most expensive liquid known to mankind. A “newbie” on the list, from just this week, is earning my level 1 IPTPA (pickleball) teaching certification. In essence, we have the framework and embrace continuous improvement to evolve, refresh and improve. I’m constantly learning from others and especially from my mistakes!

 

Dan Kennedy: Biz Publisher Creates Zen Life!
In January I will begin teaching at UCD in person, after nearly a two-year sentence to a remote island called Zoom. I'll be masked, but whatever......(we've all learned to shrug). This year's 42 MBA students will keep me on my toes. Hopefully, they'll learn to stand tall with their critical thinking about business matters and life itself, which is mostly what I teach. Oh, and they're masked as well. Breathe deep...project my voice...and pray for successful discussions!

 

 

Scott Miller: "Roger That" -- Pilot, Professor, Broadcaster, and Tiki Aficionado!
Currently, I am applying to a number of Ph.D. programs to improve my chances of becoming a full-time professor in aviation after I retire from my airline. In the meantime, I am still enjoying my Hawaii flying.

 

 

 

 

Robin Pajaro: Former Chef Gets Her Groove Back!
My business goal in 2022 is to learn and take steps to identify and attract my ideal client. I’d like to break into the corporate world of events. A few things I've learned over my first year of being in business is not to let the fear of losing or gaining a client by lowering your price. It’s very important to see what businesses in your field are charging, but more important is to know your own self-worth. I saw a great quote, not sure of the author, that says, “Anything or opportunity that is meant for you can never pass you by.” This quote reduces stress and gives me comfort because I know that after I've put the hard work in, I will attract the client that’s perfectly aligned with me and my business philosophy.
Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.
Tags:    unretirement   update   new year   dealers choice   recap   2022   resolutions   changes   blog   interview  

Carl Landau Interview: Celebrating Episode #50 -- Our Host Reveals it ALL!

Diana Landau | December 14, 2021

In this last episode of 2021, we flip the podcast-- and Diana, Carl’s wife/content wrangler/blogger interviews the host. As she interviews Carl, they do a bit deeper dive into his childhood, his parent's divorce, the family barrel business started by his grandfather, his late-blooming teens, and his college years.
 
After a few marketing jobs post-college, Carl moved out to San Francisco in his early 20’s, landing a sales position with Miller Freeman, a B-to-B publishing giant (at the time). While working with exciting magazine titles like “World Coal”, Carl realized he could launch a magazine of his own. It also happened to be the early 1980’s in the Bay area, as coding and computers took off. At 26, he launched his first magazine, “Computer Language.” He then launched a magazine a little ahead of its time, “AI Expert.” (Artificial Intelligence)
 
After selling those magazines and taking a couple of years off in his first (un)retirement, Carl identified the craft beer and wine homemaking trends and launched “Brew Your Own”, “Brew Pub” and “Winemaker” magazines. After selling those magazines in the early 2000s, Carl saw that the magazine industry conferences seemed to be only for the big titles, when 95% of the magazine market was smaller, niche titles. (Think Concrete Today, VegNews, Backyard Poultry)
 
Carl launched the Niche Magazine Conference in 2007 producing hundreds of niche magazine seminars and conferences nationwide. He sold that company in 2019. As our audience knows, Carl started a podcast in 2020 during the pandemic, making himself the guinea pig for a show about people who had big-time jobs and now wanted to do something new in their Second (or Third or Fourth) acts of life. He also offers some insights into what it was like to launch the podcast and some news about the new future of the I Used to be Somebody show. Listen in to find out!
 
Carlism Trivia:
What question does Carl NOT ask podcast guests?
  1. What was the worst job you ever had?
  2. Can you summarize your (un)retirement in four of five words?
  3. What is your pickleball experience?
  4. How much did you weigh as a baby?
  5. What was your childhood like?
Email your answer to podcast@pickleballmediahq.com for a chance to win a free Pickleball Media hat.
• More about Carl Landau and the Pickleball Media Team
• Sponsored by Capital Advantage
• Sponsored by LoveMyHeartStudy.com
 
Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.
 
Tags:    blog   interview   unretirement   carl landau   anniversary   second act   podcast  

Mark Linsz: Top Bank of America Exec now a Second Act Guru

Diana Landau | December 07, 2021

Carl interviews Mark Linsz, the Co-Founder and Senior Managing Partner of My Next Season, an organization that helps companies and individuals with important career transitions and ensures they happen well. Mark was formerly the CFO Risk Executive for Bank of America—in the top tier of leadership. He’s had 27 years of holding key corporate leadership roles on three continents.

 

Mark’s childhood was unique—since his father was a minister and professor, he grew up in Asheville, NC, lived on Long Island, NY, and then spent years living in Africa. “I always loved numbers and figuring things out—even as a little kid.” In college, he became intrigued by two possible careers: 1) a trader on the stock market floor, and 2) a real estate developer. He ended up in a very big-time career in risk management, helping businesses assess financial, lending, and even reputation risks. “The benchmark was if it was too embarrassing for my mother to read, that it probably isn't good.”

 

Mark and his family lived in Hong Kong and London before being called back to the United States right before the recession. “Both experiences were fantastic for our family, experiencing different cultures.” At the end of 2007, Mark was commuting between work in NYC and his family still in London, then the whole family moved to Charlotte and he took yet another position with B of A. It was a very stressful time for Mark and the entire world when the recession hit. You’ll have to listen to the podcast to hear what it was like from Mark’s top position in banking.

 

About 2013, Mark started thinking about what he wanted to do next. “I needed to do something different,” he tells us. At first, he thought he would go into some type of financial advising. But then he talked with his future business partner, Dr. Leslie Braksick about people in executive roles and how to help them with transitioning to the life they want in their second, or third act. They started My Next Season in 2014. “It’s been a fantastic ride!” he says. Mark and his family now live in Charlotte, North Carolina. He loves his work but also makes time for family and nurturing friendships. “Seeing people transition with purpose is really exciting and so rewarding. You can have more impact and influence than you ever had before.”

 

Mark Linsz’s (un)retirement tips:
• “If I had to do it all over again, I wish I’d taken more time off.” (In between career and new venture).
• “Take time to think through what you really want to do next. Take 6 months to a year to find your passion, it’s extremely important.”
• “Be open to a new purpose. Think outside that box. This is your opportunity to try new things.”
• “The three most important things to focus on in (un)retirement are your relationships (family, friends, work), your purpose and to make sure you are intellectually challenged.”
 
• More about Mark Linsz and My Next Season
• More about LoveMyHeartStudy.com
• Sponsored by Capital Advantage
Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.
 

 

Tags:    blog   interview   unretirement   cfo   finances   recession   career  

Ryan Frederick: Finding the Right Place, the Right Time

Diana Landau | November 30, 2021

 
Carl interviews Ryan Frederick, CEO of Smart Living 360, a consulting and real estate development firm specializing in housing and healthy aging. Ryan wrote a very timely book Right Place, Right Time “the ultimate guide to choosing a home for the second half of your life.” He has a passion for helping people and organizations understand how we can do better when it comes to healthy aging and deciding where we want to live and flourish.
 
Ryan was born in Fairfax, VA and his family of four moved to Menlo Park, CA when he was in third grade. Ryan says he had a lot of things to be grateful for growing up. From an early age he, wondered, “How can I use my gifts and talents to make the world a better place?
 
In high school, Ryan says he was a “walking contradiction”, playing sports as well as singing in the San Francisco boys chorus. Peer pressure aside, Ryan says he learned some things. “Who cares what people think? Do what you think is right to do, what you enjoy! I think the experience made me all the more stubborn to do what I wanted to do.”
 
He attended Princeton and worked in Silicon Valley in his 20’s. While there, some employees at a company he worked for were involved in a financial scandal—it really shook him up, he tells us. Wanting to gain a deeper understanding of how business works, he then enrolled in the Stanford business program. He asked himself, “What if I took this passion to make things better and have a role in people aging and living better lives? Ryan also spent a month living in a senior community to learn from older people and see what it’s like.
 
After a few stints in the corporate world, Ryan founded Smart Living 360, an organization devoted to helping communities develop with healthy aging, at age 35. A decade later, he started writing a book based on this firm’s research and study when the pandemic hit. Many people then were questioning where they wanted to be living. “Moving is one of the biggest decisions of your life,” Ryan says. “Your surroundings affect you. These things matter.”
 
Moving is not the only way to improve one’s life, however. On average, only 10% of Americans move every year. You can make changes where you are to better align yourself with where you want to be in the next chapter of your life. Three years ago, Ryan and his family took his own advice and they made a big move from Baltimore to Austin. He enjoys tennis, grilling on his Green Egg and time with family. “There are lots of resources out there to help you—this is the time for growth!”
 
Gallup poll: 5 universal, interconnected elements that shape our well-being: (more in the book)
1) Purpose
2) Social connection
3) Physical well-being
4) Financial well-being
5) Community/Place
 
 
Ryan’s (un)retirement advice on the right place to live in your second half:
 
• “Do a self-assessment. Where am I now? Am I thriving in the areas that matter? Where can I be?"
• “Keep dreaming, keep creating, find ways to reorient your life. Take on new opportunities and map out a plan!”
• “Baby Boomers, healthy aging, more longevity—means big change is coming!”

• Learn more about Ryan Frederick and his book, Right Place, Right Time
• Sponsored by Capital Advantage
• Sponsored by LoveMyHeartStudy.com
Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.

 

 

Tags:    blog   interview   CEO   smart living   real estate   Princeton   Silicon Valley   Stanford   Unretirement  

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