After 50, we don’t have the “required summer reading list” from our teachers. 

We don’t enjoy the thrill of making new friends at summer camp.

In fact, seasonal depression can happen in the summer! But you can fight the blues by using this time to get smarter and inspired, make new friends your age, and get ready for “back to school” season by setting goals for yourself and trying new things.

Here’s a recommended (not required — those days are over!) list for this summer — media and groups that will make you smile, think, and feel like part of the cool kids’ bunk. 

Go to “Summer School” and Fine-tune Your Business Skills

Thinking of starting a business? 4GenNow  fosters cross-generational collaboration and teams founders of all ages up to profit from each other’s savvy.

Nancy Fox (aka The Business Fox) helps50+ professionals learn how to launch their own businesses. 

Take a class or master a new technology. Learning new skills is possible at any age! In fact, some people have mastered coding in their 80’s!

Not sure where to go next in your life and career? Coaches are starting to specialize in the 50+ crew. Randi Levin is a transitional change expert and Diane Baranello specializes in mid-career leaders.

Want to Get More Active (as in Activism)?

Ashton Applewhite, author of This Chair Rocks, is an anti-aging activist, who has a blog, a book, a LinkedIn group, and a TED talk. She’s frank, fun, and smart!

Senior Planet published a guide to getting involved in community, national issues, or non-profits, with tips from yours truly. You don’t have to march to make a difference.

Looking for Summer Fun and Connections?

The Covey Club, an online women’s community of “lifelong learners,” was recently founded by the former publisher of MORE.

Try out a new sport, exercise, or outdoor activity. Find an instructor who specializes in adult beginners. (I had hardly ever hiked before I moved out west, and I just trekked seven miles last week!)

Whatever you Do, Learn, or Read this Summer…

Imagine you’re back in grade school and that you’ll have to write an essay when you return called “What I Did on My Summer Vacation.” Make these lazy, hazy days a little crazier (in a good way) and resolve to heat up your brain and your body, so you’ll have something meaningful to write in that imaginary assignment. Aspire to get an A+!


  • Nancy A Shenker

    The Silver Hair Playbook: How to Be a Bad Ass >50™

    Nancy A. Shenker is a marketing innovator, brand builder, writer, speaker, and self-proclaimed rule breaker. Over the course of her 40-year business and marketing career, she has been a C-level executive, an entrepreneur, and a mentor to hundreds of small businesses at all stages. Founder of theONswitch marketing, Nancy was formerly a senior executive for major consumer and business brands, including Citibank, MasterCard, and Reed Exhibitions. She has written four books, and publishes a women’s entrepreneur community (, as well as AI/machine learning/robotics site and travel and lifestyle site She also wrote a column for called Bots & Bodies (about the human side of tech) and is a contributor to a wide range of consumer and business media. She recently won the "Killer Content Award" for a major project for a fast-growing technology company.