Madonna is credited with adapting to changes in music so well that she launched the “Reinvention World Tour” in 2004. Locally, Miki Mathioudakis has reinvented her career in Madonna-worthy style. From the voice behind television’s Timothy Churchmouse to radio personality, dog-sitter, actress, teacher and now hospital chaplain, Mathioudakis has advice for Baby Boomers making career transitions. ”At one time my business card title read, “Freelance Human Being” because I was doing so many different things,” said Mathioudakis.
According to Mathioudakis, “one key to making changes is listening to that still small voice inside.” She explained how listening to her own voice was an important step in moving from an unfulfilling secretarial position and achieving sobriety to beginning seminary and a new job. Mathioudakis is a wellknown actress appearing in productions portraying Golde Meir, Maria Callas and Claire in Whose Life is it Anyway?
She has appeared on stage at the Indiana Repertory Theater, Carmel Community Playhouse, and the former Edyvean among other theaters. She is currently in rehearsals for White Christmas at Footlite in Downtown Indianapolis which opens November 22 and runs four weekends.
After earning a Master of Theological Studies degree in 1985 and returning to Christian Theological Seminary to earn a Master of Divinity degree in 2000, Mathioudakis followed her heart. She combines all of her experiences in her role as a staff chaplain at St. Vincent Women’s Hospital.
“Visualize what you want and not what you are afraid of”
“Network is my middle name,” laughs Mathioudakis. It was through networking during her residency at Methodist Hospital that she met a nurse at Women’s Hospital of Indianapolis and learned about the opportunity that later became her job. “My first day on the job as chaplain was September 11, 2001 during the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York. Within the first six months the role that was supposed to be five to seven hours a week turned into a part-time job,” said Mathioudakis. She explained there was an unmet need.
Her next advice for those managing a Boomer career may appear contradictory at first. “One of the things I had to learn was to value my gift and that meant not always giving away my services or time for free,” said Mathioudakis. She advocates charging a fee for your services even it is a small one. This doesn’t mean that charging a fee should limit your options and that’s why Mathioudakis also advises, “do not say no.” Her approach is to seize opportunities. “I pay attention to what is going on around me and it often appears things fall in my lap,” said Mathioudakis. What others may see as lucky breaks actually comes from Mathioudakis’ willingness to network, her preparedness and follow through.
No Opportunity Wasted: Creating a Life List, written by Phil Keoghan, host of television’s The Amazing Race, highlights following your own road and listening to your own voice. His philosophy is similar to how Mathioudakis connects with people, ideas and opportunities. Both of them have a call of action for others to live life more fully. We may not decide to produce a Greek play in English for the opening of the Orthodox Academy of Crete in Greece or teach at the university level like Mathioudakis, but it is important to move out of our comfort zone. Her final advice in managing a Boomer career is simple, “visualize what you want and not what you’re afraid of,” says Mathioudakis.
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