The guidance you gave to the reader who was able to retire early and has gotten bored was valid, but missed one key opportunity: high-level volunteer work. Many of us in similar circumstances serve on volunteer boards, political campaigns and civic projects. These opportunities abound.


Quite a few readers made similar points (although many were much less polite!). While I did actually mention volunteering, it’s true that I didn’t emphasize it. And of course it can be a great idea.

More specifically, multiple readers mentioned the nonprofit Score, or Service Corps of Retired Executives, which connects volunteers with small businesses seeking advice or mentorship. A couple mentioned, a nonprofit that aims to help retirees find “second acts” that aid their communities. And others pointed to Executive Service Corps, which connects high-skill volunteers to nonprofits.

Plenty of readers offered their own stories: One signed on with AmeriCorps, another founded an arts festival, a few took up teaching. Others suggested working with hospitals, libraries, food pantries, or idealistic start-ups. “So many things need to be done,” one wrote. Who could disagree?