sixtyandme logo
We are community supported and may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site. Learn more

The 4-Step Secret Formula for Creating a Powerful Second Act

By Ilene Marcus May 02, 2022 Mindset

Is there a second act in you? Perhaps even a third? At this age, we all know that the definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”

It’s how we change and evolve that defines our next act. I found the secret formula in four letters: GGRR. Let me explain my sound thinking and reflection.

Take Wayne Gretsky’s Advice

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” As the greatest ice hockey player ever, Wayne Gretsky’s prophetic words were posted in every bar in New York City when he played for the Rangers. I always thought he was talking about tequila shots.

Even if you are a natural, like Gretzky, it takes a lot of practice, patience and determination to be the best. More importantly, it takes a lot of mistakes and missed shots to get good.

Follow the Movie Moguls

It is inevitable that those who keep trying are going to have more losses and then more achievements. The famous movie studio founder Samuel Goldwyn was fond of reminding actors and producers of his formula for success: “The harder I work, the luckier I get.”

His point to those actors and producers seeking his nod was that hard work will always trump luck. These words are even more pertinent today, with people waiting for their videos to go viral and believing one TV spot will make them famous. Don’t ever doubt the role hard work plays in getting lucky.

Use Field Observations

No study is complete without extensive field observations. In my life, this has been defined as comparing who has more, who has less and who is stuck in the middle, like me. It’s about getting unstuck, just to get stuck again and grow stronger.

I’ve watched those who reach success and learned that grit, the ability to get through and stick with something (stick-to-it-ness), is a key ingredient to those who are successful. So, what makes us gritty? What gives us that traction to learn? It’s all in GGRR.

What Is GGRR?

These four letters stand for Give-Growth-Redemption-Relevance. Grit your teeth and wrinkle your forehead as you say it… GGRR… like a mama bear guarding your territory and ready to handle whatever comes. See how GGRR works:

GIVE: Find your Super Purpose

GROW: From your Mistakes


RELEVANCE: Live your Unique Purpose

Give – Find Your Super Purpose

Successful people have something to contribute and they know it! It may be buried deep, but you can find it. Your super purpose is about the power of your story and remembering who you are (Simba).

It’s the sum of the lessons, the very unique experiences, all of the ways you have interpreted the stories of your life, the gifts given to you from the universe, the sunsets and demons you chase, and what you choose to do with the super power of you.

It may be to nurture, to support to inspire to teach or to shop. It’s called paying it forward – that should be a given and something we all owe back to the universe.

Grow – Live through a Humbling Experience

My own story is so complicated. Death, betrayal, illness, trusting the wrong people, taking care of others instead of myself, paying attention to the wrong things. It does not matter what yours is, just learn from it.

“Grow from love” is a great line from the movie First Wives Club. Talk about those ladies finding their super purpose and the gifts they deserve.

Redemption – Make Your Wrong Right

Tell your story like only you can. The guru here is J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame. Use your past, put yourself in the game. Make it count like she did it with her name – J.K. Rowling, akin to J.R. Tolkien.

J.K. told us about her world, her understanding of the good vs. evil battle. In a new world, she created big characters with major blind spots and intricate back stories.

When you hit true rock-bottom, learn to live a life beyond your – and mine too – wildest dream. What a story of finding your own peace or piece. You get the point.

Relevance – The Shift to Living Your Truth

Make it purposeful. Use this new perspective to bring your truth to others. Tell others who and why you are here today. Use all the giving, growth and redemption to be relevant to know what you are supposed to know. Then make your purpose relevant to the world, or at least your world.

What is next for you? My suggestion is to use everything you got: your past, your lessons, your hurts, your disappointments, your purpose to make you gritty and live the life you want.

Are you living the life that you really want in your 60s or 70s? Have you found that dealing with tough times has made you stronger? What formula for creating a new life in your 60s or beyond are you using? Please share in the comments below.

Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

The Author

Ilene Marcus, MSW, MPA, is the author of Managing Annoying People and runs Aligned Workplace, speaking and training Leaders and Founders to attract and retain great employees. An emerging literary writer, her goal is to make you smile just a bit more. Please visit her website at

You Might Also Like