{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Over 40s: Do you spend your days consumed by anxiety that you'll get laid off and never work again?", "post_id": "596ed5c561dec80016e41425", "reply_count": 36, "vote_count": 25, "bowl_id": "5565cfca8b2b9a03009acf57", "bowl_name": "Advertising" }

Over 40s: Do you spend your days consumed by anxiety that you'll get laid off and never work again?

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You shouldn't have anxiety about it, because it's going to happen for the vast majority of us. What you should do is plan an exit strategy, which will reduce your anxiety. And I wouldn't plan on freelancing to retirement either...when's the last time you saw an over 50 freelancer? Even if by some miracle you make it to 60 in advertising, you'd better be banking some major cash to make it that last 7-10. I've seen exactly one person retire out of advertising. I think I will see a second within the next couple years. It's a super-rare occurrence, and chances are you'll fall into the 99.99% that get laid off and never work in advertising again. Just acknowledge that reality and plan accordingly. Or start an advertising union.

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I'm pushing 50 although I think people think I'm younger. 😉 I'll never admit my age. I run accounts and have client relationships. Client relationships are the key to not getting laid off. I agree with not going freelance at an older age. I freelanced for about 8 years but went back full time to run an account. Being surrounded by young people keeps you young and you learn from them as much as they learn from you. Don't worry. Stay relevant and hungry. Do good work. Winning an award or two doesn't hurt either. All this said this is not a stable industry. Save as much money as you can now. I'm always thinking of my plan b but haven't come up with anything brilliant yet.

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I wish all the time that we hadn't bought our house, a house I should love but can't, knowing we'd lose it if I lost my job. I'm having a harder and harder time enjoying my job or my life because of this. It's gotten oppressive enough that I honestly worry about my health, mental and physical.

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Yes, every single day. Nights and weekends, too.

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Ageism is part of the culture that we perpetuate with our work. Also, people who are over 40 in this biz tend to be white guys. And the industry isn't clamoring to help us.

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I turn 40 soon and this is constantly on my mind. This post isn't helping.

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Not as much as I did in my 30's.

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Yes. Let's do something about this. It's complete bullshit that a supposedly progressive industry can demonstrate such open ageism.

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Let's all start our own agency of Olds. We will kick ass with all the experience and contacts. Actually, I have already left and started my own thing. Going well. Who wants to join me?

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Geez SAD1 way to bring everyone down. I'm over 50 - AND a woman. Try not to step on my grave as you spout your words of wisdom. I'm doing just fine. I am concerned about layoffs but not because of my age--more because of the direction my company is being steered.

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I spend my days consumed by trying to do great work. If I ever do get let go, I want to know for damn sure it's because of my age, not because I stopped pushing the work or started coasting.

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Director 2, so am I. I'm still winning Lions off my own ideas. But I'm also incredibly aware that my salary would pay for 3+ juniors. Juniors whose ideas are just as fresh or fresher, albeit not fully formed. My ideas may be airtight, but they only beat the half-assed, half-formed thoughts half the time.

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That's why I went freelance and started a side gig.

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I am freelance, and it hasn't let up for a moment.

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Honestly, if you're over 40 and still kicking ass in advertising, you know you belong here. The fewer, the better, in a good way.

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This is advertising. You can be fired at any point and have difficulty getting a job. As long as you continue to do good work and stay relevant, you should be fine. I know plenty of folks in 50s/60s working like crazy. The main problem is the older you get, the more senior position you hold. There are just fewer of those. So you may have to compromise title or salary.

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Mediavest, under $200K and not at all out of line for the amount of business I oversee. I have strong client relationships. What I don't have is a ton of savings. I was foolish for many years.

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Thanks for the concern, CD5. So nice to read. You're right, I do need to pause and see the doc. I've let myself get swept up by the 60-80 hour weeks and the constant hamster wheel, just trying to stay one step ahead. But I've hit a critical point where it feels like I'm falling apart. What helped you, an Rx or something else? No judgment, just genuinely curious and open to all ideas.

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I manage my depression/anxiety through weekly talk therapy, 3x/week exercise (if only long walks), unplugging and a good antidepressant

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A doc appt has been made. Gonna look into some self-preservation. Or self-pickling, whatever will make me last longer. ;) Yeah, the hours are pretty much the only time I wish my husband was in advertising. There's no way to explain why I'm working yet another weekend, canceling more plans, to make a few ads that sell food in a box. Especially because, to his outsider eye, the produced campaign seriously isn't THAT different from the presented one.

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My supervisors go from telling me that I'm valuable to making me think that I'm about to get fired...in a 24 hour period.

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A small part of me wish I would get laid off and be forced into freelancing so I can make 💰 💰 💰

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Have you heard about mangers getting laid off recently since bench time was increasing?

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Waiting to get fired any day now.

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Did BCW NY just layoff it’s EA staff?! Seeing a bunch of these names on Connect and very upset that great people were let go!

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Is it okay to look for a new job when pregnant? These layoffs don’t look so great at Deloitte.

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When do you tell employers during your job search that you have been laid off?

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