When I sold my successful software business five years ago at the age of 63, after having been a college CFO for 30 years prior to that, I immediately began feeling a lack of purpose and direction. What to do? Who to ask? There just weren’t many groups or organizations that I could go to for answers and support.

Throughout my middle years, I never questioned what held meaning. The scaffolding of my identity was built into the job. What I did was who I was, and that was the end of it. Then, on the other side of full-time work, the picture became less clear. Take the job away and who was I?

At the same time, I realized that new capacities were opening in me; ones that could change my sudden feelings of loss to a sense of gain. Yet I had only the slightest awareness of how to construct such a new reality. Six years later, my mission is clear, my life purpose is evident, and my identity is reestablished.

As I help you transition into the after-work years, we will come together, one-on-one, or in a facilitated group, to build your new narrative, your new story, the one based on energies and activities unique to you. In developing this cornerstone of your new identity, we’ll work with questions like:

  • What brings you joy?
  • What old or new passions energize you?
  • What opens your heart?
  • What activates your creativity?
  • What makes you feel more alive?
  • And perhaps the most important one, what gives you that feeling of deep connection to yourself and, by extension, to everything, and everyone else?

You can learn, as I did, to let go, loosen up, and not take yourself too seriously, while opening to the new you that is waiting to emerge.

That’s how I found direction, and a profound sense of peace.

Working together, that destiny will be yours as well!



Ed Merck spent 30 rewarding years as chief financial officer and/or a member of the music faculty at several prestigious colleges and universities.

Subsequently, as an entrepreneur, Ed co-developed Future Perfect, the premier computer-based strategic/financial planning model used in higher education today.

He was educated at Wesleyan University (M.A. Music) and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (M.B.A. Business).

In recent years, Ed has gravitated towards pursuits of the heart – writing, making music, teaching yoga/meditation, and offering workshops on “Finding Purpose in Life After Work.”

His memoir, Sailing the Mystery: My Journey into Life’s Remaining Chapters, was released to critical acclaim in October, 2013. ForeWord Reviews noted, “Merck’s writing is well-crafted, beautiful, and sincere… delivering refreshing insights into relationships and aging.”

His recent articles on finding purpose after work have been published in the Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal’s MarketWatch, and Next Avenue, a PBS online magazine.

He currently resides on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts.


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