I was rushing towards retirement and didn’t have a decent private pension of any value. My only income would be the state pension and the thought of that scared the life out of me!!!! I’d read too many stories of pensioners having to choose between buying food or putting the heating on and I didn’t want to be one of those statistics.
That was the moment I made up my mind to take my future into my own hands. I tried lots of methods and made loads of mistakes before finding a way to make a decent income and have enough time and freedom to enjoy it. I’ve made it my mission to help as many women as possible not to become a statistic and to reclaim control of their futures.
Age UK recently reported that although there are fewer women pensioners (due to the pension age increase) the number of women pensioners living in poverty has increased. One in five women now or 1.25 million live below the breadline in their retirement years and numbers are expected to rise due recent changes in how pensions are calculated.
At 55 I realised I was heading for a life of poverty and decided to do something about it. I now help women who have little or no private pension to create income online using their own skills, knowledge and experience.
But I don’t just teach you how to make online income. I use my skills as a hypnotic life coach to help women in midlife rebuild your confidence, regain your self-belief and self-worth so you develop the mindset needed for success.
There were few opportunities for girls when I was born in 1960. No one from my London council estate went to university or even grammar school. Girls were expected to do some shop or office work till they got married and had babies. Like many families in the 1960s we were poor, but so was everyone else around us.
My parents divorced when I was still in primary school, and my mum became disabled. Myself and my 3 siblings were plunged into poverty. We were put in foster care twice when mum was in hospital and then ended up nursing her and being her carers when we came home. We got our Christmas presents from a charity two years in a row. I can’t say it was a good time but needing to survive in desperate circumstances taught me the important lesson of resilience.
Despite a lack of role models I’ve always believed that anything is possible if you step out of your own way and I truly believed there was a better way of living. I I left school at 16 with no qualifications but got a job in Fortnum & Masons, ‘the Queen’s grocers’. It was here that I had my first of a completely different way of life. By day I was mixing with true upper class gentry and royalty. By night I was living in a council house in South East London putting money in the meter for electricity. I knew there was more to life than trying to find 50p for the meter and always robbing Peter to pay Paul.
I met my husband in 1982 and had 2 children by 1990. He was from an affluent family but by 1992 we had lived through 2 recessions together and things were tough. I still knew there was a better life for us so I went back to college and finally got some qualifications, a GCSE and A-Level French and part 1 of a level 3 BTEC in European Business and Finance. I couldnt’ stay on to do part 2 as we were skint so I had to go back to work to earn more money.
We moved from London and bought a pub in 1996. It was quiet in the daytimes so somehow I got on a degree course with just the one A level and graduated with a degree in Environmental Geology age 41. That degree opened doors and I worked for the Local Authority in the planning department. I felt proud of my achievements but HATED the job. The endless meetings and bureaucracy were soul destroying.
I’d fallen in love with Spain during a field trip at University and as my unhappiness with my work got worse my dream of living in Spain grew bigger. We sold the pub and moved to Spain for a year but without enough savings we both had to work. The only jobs were in the tourist industry and they disappeared overnight after September 11th when the planes flew into the Twin Towers in the US.
We went back to the UK and I got a job in the Environment Agency but that was just as bad as the previous job and I sat at my desk dreaming of Spain
I suddenly became very ill in 2009. Emergency surgery left me with half my colon missing and the knowledge that I had been born with Crohn’s Disease. Instead of getting better I got worse and was house bound for almost a year.
I made a vow to myself that if I ever recovered I was never going to work in a mundane job again. I wanted to do something meaninful that meant at the end of the day I had helped someone in a positive way. I was almost 50 and didnt’ want to spend the rest of my working life in a place where it was more important to get the box ticked than to help someone.
In 2011 we were approved as therapeutic foster carers. Slightly different from a normal foster carer, we would care for the children who’d had the most traumatic starts in life and couldnt’ manage in a normal family environment. Our birth children were grown up and had left home so we were able to give 100% of our attention to the child.
Soon afterwards my daughter arrived, we loved her from the start but as the years passed we realised she had a severe mental health disability. We decided to adopt her but as fostering is a self-employed role I knew I would lose my income the day the adoption was finalised. By now I was in my mid 50s. My pension wouldn’t provide enough for me to live on let alone caring for a young adult with a disability.
I knew I’d never have enough money to make my retirement dream of living in Spain come true.
I wasn’t prepared to live in poverty again so I took matters into my own hands.
I retrained as a Clinical Hypnotherapist but soon found that seeing clients 1:1 in person is not a recipe for success so I added Hypnotic Life Coaching training and began working online.
More research discovered that I wasn’t alone in not having a decent private pension. Almost one in six women in the UK have no private pension and those who do have them do not have enough in thier pension pots to cover basic needs.
I have now made it my mission to help at least 5000 women in the UK escape Pension Poverty by helping them create thier own additional income online so
It’s a fact that whilst the retirement age for women in the UK is rising the chances of staying in employment until you reach pension age is getting smaller. Just 30% of women over 50 are still in employment by the time they reach retirement age and the age is still rising so it’s not surprising that women over 50 make up 48% of the new self-employed.
Now trained as a hypnotic life coach, I am determined to help women over the age of 50 who face life on the state pension or just above it create thier own income online. I do this by helping them create online courses using their existing skills, knowledge, and experience. It’s just as I always believed – anything is possible when you get out of your own way. And I am living proof, having overcome so many hurdles – that this really is the case.