Ask Dr. Diane: Starting Over In Life – How to Catch Up Financially

Today’s Question Is:    I am pursuing my Masters. I am divorced, 49 and just starting over in my life.  I now have a 30 year mortgage on a home (I look at it as an investment).  I really am worried about my future and how well off I will be financially.  Starting over has cost me a fortune but personally I am extremely happy, until I think about my future, and then severe anxiety.  Not to mention paying student loans.  Anyway do you have any resources for women like me?  I feel happy that I am an RN and am actually working but I want to be better off financially.

Answer:  Thanks for the question.  Having a masters can only help you in the long run.  It opens doors for you in terms of work possibilities.  You said you like being an RN.  Are you interested in teaching as well?  I like the site They list teaching jobs for people with a master or doctoral degree.  I think teaching online could be a good part time way to get extra money and also set you up for a possible full time job in the future should you want to stay home, not be in nursing any more and/or not be worried about your age being a factor in finding new career opportunities.  I am almost 48 … and realistically we are not at our most marketable age.  I write about this in my book How to Reinvent Your Career.  It will be available on Amazon in about a month or so.  You can find out more here on my website and on my blog at or on Facebook.
Be sure you are putting the maximum amount away in your 401k or your IRA if you don’t have a 401k. After you turn 50, you can put an additional $5500/year away in your 401k to catch up if you are behind. Many people are working past the retirement age of 65.  If you have your masters and have some online teaching experience that you could be developing now, you will be able to supplement income nicely and not have to work a full 8-hour day.  The extra income could also help you pay off those student loans. 
To hear more financial advice, listen to my recent interview with Dean Voelker by clicking here.