Welcome to today’s podcast. Our topic today “Gray Divorce – From Tears To Triumph” and from Wisdom To Wealth. I’m Rebecca Zung, and I am Susan Guthrie. Today we have another inspirational guest for you, gray divorcee and now later in life super, successful entrepreneur, Sue Ferreira. After a very difficult gray divorce, which ended a very long term marriage and after 40 years practising as an anesthesiologist, in the invisible world of the Operating Room, for her Second Act, in her sixties, Sue Ferreira surprised herself by becoming an entrepreneur, with a passion for helping people grow their businesses with video and the cutting-edge tools of the web. Facing the future as a single woman and knowing so many had been sideswiped financially by the 2008 Crash, Sue saw many women struggle with their businesses and being challenged by our rapidly changing times. In that decade, marketing has transformed. Today, video is the most powerful of all marketing tools and a must-have for every business. Sue learned that attention and visibility are key to success, yet like many, had to learn how to embrace them, overcome them and thrive. Her video with Gary Vaynerchuk has been viewed on YouTube approximately a quarter of a million times – Wow! Welcome, Sue. Thank you very much, Rebecca and Susan, it’s just an honor to be with you this morning. Thank you and Welcome – thank you for being here. Let’s start from what seemed, what is really the beginning of this new exciting journey or the second phase of your life, your divorce. Overall divorce rates have sort of begun to decline and I kind of side note that that’s because Millennials aren’t getting married, but the rate among older Americans has actually doubled, in the past 25 or 30 years. Half a century ago, only 2.8 percent of Americans over 50, we’re getting a divorce and today that figure is actually more than 15 percent, and approximately one in four of every couple over fifty is getting a divorce. So first of all, how long were you married. I was married for 37 years. Before my divorce, we, we kind of separated after about 34 years, but you know “wrangle time” for three years and the divorce, the divorce nisi, didn’t come through, until I was 60, in 2007. Well, :wrangle time” – I like that we’re “wranglers”! The English accent makes everything sounds so much dignified and how did the divorce come about? Well you know ,the usual I found out my husband was having an affair and it turned out he’d had several affairs, so I basically got traded in for a lot of younger models. “The regular usual thing” and that’s so sad that you’re saying that, “that’s the regular”. I mean if you look at it with with with pragmatism, rather than with the heartache that happens at the time, that is usually the situation. Not in all cases, but frequently it is the case, and so I kind of fitted into that statistic. I guess you know, so the prevalence of Gray Divorce is something that Rebecca and I have commented often, that we have, have seen that increase in divorces later in life, and, but it’s been a little bit shocking and I know it’s quite shocking, you know, to all of my clients, who find themselves like you. So you mentioned a 37 year marriage – in the past several years, I’ve had at least I would say about half my practice, when I was litigating was helping couples through divorce in that “later in life”. At the time, you were going through your divorce, did you have peers, did you have others in your social group, that we’re also going through a “later in life divorce” at that time. You bet! I have I have a close circle of five, very close female friends. We’re all on our own and in that group, one has never been married, one is sadly a widow but the other three of us have all gone through Grey Divorces, divorces in our very late 50s up to 70. Wow, that’s that’s incredible! I thought your answer was gonna be “No, you didn’t really know that many people at that time” but the fact that you’re saying “oh sure, it was fairly common” is is kind of shocking to me. How are you able to pull yourself together? I’m not sure I did for a while. I’ll be honest for a long time, I really didn’t and you know, I was trying to keep a lot of it quiet from my children and when one of one of my children said, “Mom what’s happened to you, you have no self-esteem. You’re not the person you used to be, at all” – that was to the heart, and so I really, I did a lot of soul-searching. I think we all do it’s a time of learning, transformation, what did I do wrong, what went wrong, what did he do wrong, you know the looking at it from every single angle, that you can think of, and I think, I was in a way, I was lucky in that, although he’d be having affairs, I knew he wouldn’t be the one to end the marriage, so I had the luxury of time. I knew, I would be the one to pull the plug and I knew I would not pull the plug, until I done so much soul-searching and thinking, that I knew that when I left I would never regret it for a second. So it was it was it was a difficult few years, but when I left I had that freedom to know I would never ever regret making that decision, and I haven’t. So you know, it’s a process of growth and if it hadn’t happened, I wouldn’t be here talking to you today, and I wouldn’t be having the wonderful life, I have today. So you know, things happenm shit happens in life. I knew that from my years is in the operating room and, and you either you either sink or swim, don’t you, at every one of those events and you make that decision yourself, and you move on. You know, I, I’ve had so many clients and Susan, I know you have too, who are in this situation and, and I, it just when you said this, it made me think of this, where you’re a woman who is very strong and powerful and obviously very smart and in control of your life in many other ways, and here you were just completely blindsided, kind of kicked in the gut, and you know, maybe if you could just sort of offer a little piece of advice to those women, who say that they have, you know, no control in so many other areas of their lives but not that. Advice – I don’t know, I think, I think you can probably extend it to be honest, Rebecca, into other “shit happens” events, because they do happen, you know, illnesses, various other things, where you think you’re on a Life Path and then a big speed bump comes along, and it stops you and it makes you sit up, look at the situation and usually these are painful situations. Most transformational growth experiences come out of pain and I’m not saying “oh great, pains good” I mean – it – but pain comes and I think really my advice is and certainly what I did, for my divorce is “My God, I read every single health self-help book, mindset book, (excuse me), I read everything I could lay my hands on. Those you know -back then there wasn’t Amazon – wasn’t as big, I literally went to the bookstore “Chapters” and ripped everything off the shelves, went home read everything, and it was, in retrospect, now, 10 years 11 years down the road, it was a period of growth that I don’t regret. I probably needed and I’ve grown into a person I like a lot more, so I’m not saying :Hey it’s great, take it’s an opportunity”. I think down the road, you will find that is the case, if you decide to swim instead of sink. Now if you sink and go into “woe-is-me victimhood”, that’s a choice and I think that would be a sad place to go, so I encourage you to take the other path, and deal with it and just see how you can – sounds really corny but – how you can grow and become a different better person, out of it. Well, how about if you tell us what you’re up to now? Well this came out of my divorce. Obviously I am, I guess it might, you know I was an anesthesiologist for so long and in, in those years, I have seen us get older and older and older, and if I hadn’t been a physician I’ve been a historian, so I’ve always read. I’ve always been into history stats, the past, the present and the future, putting them all together and I knew you know, statistically, that I’m a Leading Edge Baby Boomer and I knew that the Boomers were in trouble, coming – financially in trouble, going into their later years. I mean every fact about Baby Boomers moving into the later years is pretty awful, and I knew that women were especially at risk, and that women who got divorced were even more at risk, and so in 2007, when I went through my divorce and I, I started dealing with my life as a single woman, I kind of got it all together, and then that I was reading a lot of financial stuff. You know 2007-2008 – I’m getting – you know – what is it out of Star Wars – “I got a bad feeling about this”. When the crash of 2008 happened, I really had – I don’t do visions right, I’m kind of pragmatic person, I don’t do visions – but I had a vision of, and it was very visceral, of all the people, who would be hit by this recession, who he wouldn’t have time to recover, especially if they were older, so I kind of – this little voice in me said “Oh man, they need help” and then something said to me “Well, you know, you’ve just recovered, you go ahead and you help them” and I thought “That’s a load of rubbish” but then eventually I did. I started, in my mind, creating a program, where I could reach out, especially to women, women 45 and older, reach out and help them move into this rapidly changing world, because I also knew how rapidly things were changing. I mean, if you look at the years from 2007 to 2017 we’ve been through an absolutely huge revolution, socially, technologically – in everything else and I like that stuff. I’m quite a techy geek so I – and I see that lacking in so many of this age group and they have a real challenge moving into and dealing with tech and, and moving into this world. I don’t know if you know this statistic, but at the moment the biggest demographic starting new businesses is Women over 65. The second largest demographic starting businesses is Women over 55. Wow, I had know no idea! It’s huge isn’t it? Encouraging – it’s so great. Right, it’s encouraging except – and I’m not, not being a downer – sorry, it’s encouraging, but I think the reasons are that so many of these women, the light is going on and they’re saying “God I’m gonna run out of money, before I run out of life!”, because I expect most of us to live to 110 – 120 easily with good quality lives, because this is what I’ve been seeing in the Operating Room, as we aged, you know, fitter and fitter old folks. So I just want to help that group move online, because if they’re starting businesses and they’re not using the online tools of video etc and social media, they’re really not going to be successful. So that is my niche, helping women who are starting businesses or who all who already have established businesses, but who struggle with understanding the web and are fearful of video, or don’t know how to use it, helping them move online with video, so they can grow their business, because truthfully and we’ll come maybe to this later, visibility and attention is all you need to gain, these days. This is what we’re doing here with podcasts, it’s getting our message out, so that’s what I’m focused on. Well, you know, it strikes me one of the symbols are one of the the expressions of how successful you’ve been about getting your message out is that video project that we mentioned with Gary Vaynerchuk. You know, for our listeners who are unfamiliar with Gary if there are any he’s also known as Gary Vee, and he’s a wildly successful digital marketing and social media expert, I looked up his Wikipedia page this morning and he’s net worth is about a hundred and sixty million dollars, so obviously he’s doing something right and you have the joint project with him, which is a pretty spectacular thing, over 250,000 views. Can you tell us about the project at how and how that came about? Total serendipity! It was never – it was like – Okay, I have always enjoyed Gary V’s videos, because he, he is saying, he’s basically going out with the same message, as me except you know I haven’t got the $160 million yet, but we’re on our way! And he has one, and he has one video, which is a classic called “Six Minutes For The Next 60 years Of Your Life – A Rant”, where he rants exactly about what I’ve just been saying about the opportunities for women to move online etc etc today, or for everyone to move online, but he does focus on women, in this rant and I love it. I love this rant. I kept going back to it, because that the weird thing is – like Gary’s over on the East Coast of the States and he’s urban, he’s a New Jersey boy and he’s kind of intense and dark. I always feel and I live out in Victoria British Columbia, it’s all lovely and light, and it’s sea and mountains and yet we have the same message – this guy from New Jersey and this little lady from Victoria. I liked this video so much – right – this was purely – I thought for fun, I’m gonna take his script and I’m gonna use his script to try and do his, his mannerisms and basically do the same video. So I did and it was just going be for my friends and for my YouTube channel. Then I thought “Oh Geez if I’ve done this I might get stuck with copyright, so I just took the video link from YouTube and I sent it through the regular contact form on Gary’s website and said, “Look, I’ve done this I don’t want to – I don’t want to be caught with copyright issues from you, because it’s can be very strict and they watched it and said “No, it’s fun, go ahead, put it up” so we did. I put it on my YouTube channel and forgot about it. Then about three months later, my phone, one Saturday morning. it is going buzz-buzz- buzz-buzz with messages and I looked at it. My friends are saying “loved the video, hilarious” and I’m thinking what video? It turned out – what Gary’s team had done had taken my video and spliced it with the original Six Minutes Rant, so that it flips backwards and forwards. Everyone was telling me “Oh fantastic splicing”, “Your editing is great” I said “Not my editing!” and as you said it’s actually now at two hundred and fifty four thousand views and I think the message from this is that exactly, what I’m saying the world is open to you now. It’s a level playing field. You are within one-click access of the biggest influencers in the world, because there is no bigger influencer in video marking than Gary Vee, so although I didn’t intend to do this, if you want to make yourself visible, you can easily begin to move into the world of your influencer. Just by joining their Facebook Groups, commenting, adding value and you will find that your, your profile, your visibility, the attention you get increases exponentially, and we’re living in an exponential world, so you either get on the “Exponential Train” or you may as well give up. That’s how it happened – pure happenstance! Well and some tenacity. Yeah, I guess, but seriously I just made it for a laugh, because- and especially, you know, older women – I mean you know – I don’t know that I would have even thought to do that honestly, and so I think, that’s pretty amazing. So have you found that there are any other tools out there that you like for women, who are divorcing? I don’t know that’s a good question that’s a really good question? Well right – for example – tell us about the Life Goes On Roadmap. Ah yes, well – because I, you know, I’m trying to get everyone involved in, in taking their message to the world. I was at an event quite recently and I met Nancy Juetten, whom you might know about. I followed her – I’ve had her newsletters for years, but I met Nancy and her husband, Steve, and you know, if you have any look up Nancy Juetten, most of you will know her, love her, and they were just talking about launching their new product called The Life Goes On Roadmap, and I immediately, I immediately bonded with this project of theirs, because what they are doing is from personal experience, and I’ve seen the same thing. They know, again going back, to this shit happens issue, stuff happens. You can have an accident, you can have sudden death. I don’t want to be gloomy, but it happens, right? There’s, I think, there’s 2,500 sudden deaths of day in the US and looking at the fact that 58 percent of Americans die without a will, Steve, as a financial planner, keeps seeing people, who have one of these Life Road Bumps that changes their world. They lose a partner or they themselves maybe have somethin,g that they can no longer communicate with their family, and the family or the partner doesn’t know where – doesn’t anything about their finances, doesn’t know where the keys to the lock boxes are or passwords; does know where the taps are to turn off the water main. It’s all of these things, that are often carried by a male partner, suddenly they know nothing about, and so then they’re dealing with their grief, be it a divorce or a death or, or an incapacitating event, and then they have to deal with this other horrendous event, at the same time. So Life Goes On Roadmap is great, because it allows you to head this off at the pass, and to go through and look at everything in your life, and catalogue it, so that when the unexpected happens, your family or your partner can just access this, this document and everything is in there. In fact, my listeners, we will put a link to it, in our show notes, so that they can have access to it as well. Yeah and you know it’s interesting, because again, as a divorced woman, I kind of did this when I was first divorced, about you know, 10 or 11 years ago now, but I realized I needed to update everything. I have three children, but two of my daughters were with me just, just a couple of weeks ago and as I say I’ve got Nancy and Steve’s Life Goes On Roadmap. We sat down, we went through i,t we had the talk, so that I now feel very relieved, because they know where everything is. They know that they will be able to access everything in, in the event that something happened to me. It’s, I think, it’s something everyone needs to do. It’s something that is incredibly valuable and I just love Life Goes On Roadmap. It sounds like a real peace of mind factor for people, as they move forward, past a traumatic event or a life change. You know I was thinking in that vein of life goes on you, so you went from being a married anesthesiologist to now a single woman in your 60s, also a video and social media expert moving forward. What is, what does your day look like today? What do you – what are you up to these days? I know you were recently featured at a conference on Facebook Ads, speaking about Facebook Ads. You know, what’s going on for you today? Well I’m just pursuing this wherever I can. I am going to events speaking. I do a lot of public speaking and, and getting clients, who I can help take their message to the world, through video. I have two or three clients later on today and I just know, that unless you make this transition to video, you really are not going to have a successful business in today’s world, and that’s what worries me – about this the number of women, who are starting new businesses, who are not aware of this. I think it’s a real challenge too, because you know the younger kids will hop on a video and they have no qualms about being on video, but if you’re forty five years or older and a woman, you know, I would have my hundred and sixty million bucks almost like Gary Vaynerchuk, if I had a couple of bucks every time someone said to me “oh no, I can’t do video. don’t like being on camera” or “my hair is wrong today”, “I can’t, no, I need to lose ten pounds before I do a video”. Being confident on camera for women over forty five is a huge roadblock. They, they don’t like it, they don’t want to go there and I think that’s what holds an awful lot of people back, so not only not wanting to be on camera, but they think the tech of video is difficult, which today it isn’t. I’m just, I’m just – that’s my focus going down the road saying “hey you can do this” and, and, and just helping them move into that bigger world, and then, start connecting with influencers and moving their message out. Well, I, you know, part of that that video with Gary Vee, they that you guys now have done together, is that this message of people don’t care if you’re 70, 20, fat skinny, you know, bald, gray hair, they just want to know if your message can help them. You’re absolutely right and you know that’s funny you should say say that, Rebecca because I had another road bump, a road bump this time last year, almost to the day actually. I was diagnosed with breast cancer and so I, I went through that whole –
00:24:42,049 –>00:24:45,590
I was very lucky – all I needed was a mastectomy, I didn’t have to have radiation or chemotherapy. I have two very close friends, who, who had their mastectomies within a few days of me, and they had to go down the other path to radiation and chemo. I mean, I know what a tough path, that is so I decided in, in empathy and sympathy with them, I would shave my head on Facebook Live. I went onto Facebook Live, last November, when I was, just after I had my mastectomy and shaved my head off and you know part of that message was listen _ Hair Off – Yes, yes, shave my hair off and had my head shaved. You know that bought in three and a half thousand views from Facebook Live, and got my message there was nobody cares. I mean, I think I looked awful, but what the heck, nobody cares. It’s the message you take across that matters. So what advice would you give women, who are facing gray divorce? I would say, I’m sorry, it’s going to be a really tough time in your life, learn everything you can about, who you are what your strengths are, what you want to do going forward. I think it’s very, it helps an awful lot, if you can find something, a new focus, something that you perhaps have always wanted to do. You know a lot of us, you know, you go through the life of career and motherhood and somewhere deep in your soul, there is there’s a niggle right? There’s something that you always longed to do and just bring that to the fore. Give yourself a new purpose in life and start moving forward, because you’re going forward anyway, so you may as well move forward with purpose, and that would be my advice. Well, Sue, we really appreciate all that you’ve shared with our listeners today, and for joining us to use your words, you’ve used your wisdom that the world needs to hear, so thank you for sharing your inspirational wisdom about life in business. Oh, it’s been my pleasure, it’s fine. I love to speak with two women, who are doing the same thing. Yes. thank you and your website is Wisdom To Wealth, so is it wisdom and then the word to wealth Is there anything else, you’d like to share with our listeners today. Well, just that I have website shame, at the moment, because I’m redoing it. I’ve got a lot of videos on YouTube. I’m just about to hit my first thousand subscribers on YouTube, after just a few months of working my channel and I think, if you are looking at starting a business and you need to have simple tools, that will help you move out with video, I’ve got a lot of videos on that YouTube channel that will help you. I would say go to my YouTube Channel as well, which is Wisdom To Wealth Mastery and hey, I’d love you to subscribe, because then I’ll get over a thousand quite quickly, but I think I’ve tried to put everything there, in terms of equipment and mindsets and everything else, that you, that will help you move forward with your new life. Well I’m gonna go check it out right now, so I’ve been watching them all morning because I’m like “oh well, I was just first to do research for this interview, but then I was like well wait a minute, I want to know how to add music to my YouTube videos, let me know how to add characters, lots of valuable information. Yes, my pleasure, it’s just been a pleasure talking with you both. Thank You Rebecca Thank You Susan.Thank you


  1. Are you struggling with a Gray Divorce? A divorce later in life, after a long marriage.
    Check out Breaking Free, A Modern Divorce Podcast, and listen to this episode, which shows you a rich and fulfilling life awaits you, in your Second Act. 😀😀😀

  2. You are so brave and strong to talk about this situation, which must have been horrid for you. Great interview and discussion. Love. Deirdre. X

  3. Wow, you are so inspiring. Love what you said about giving yourself the freedom to do your soul searching. There is no right or wrong age for this – we all need to grow in one way or another and each stage of life brings about growth in a different way. Thanks for sharing your heartbreaking but beautiful story!

  4. Great compilation of a lot of your life's information and experience Sue. I support everything in order to support women to achieve financial independence and agree with your bigger purpose.

  5. Sue, thanks for sharing these tips, with these beautiful ladies, about how to thrive through divorce. Great stuff!

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