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Barbara Bradley Hagerty is a wise and engaging guide through the possibilities (and occasional pitfalls) of middle age. With her deft storytelling skills and exhaustive research, she reveals a truth that should hearten millions of people: Done right, midlife can be a time of remarkable engagement, purpose, and love.
Life Reimagined is arguably the best book on middle life ever written. Not only is it in beautiful prose, but it’s also thoroughly researched. In order to feel understood and to anticipate the future, everybody from 30 to 70 should read this book. It is a joy.
Combining her great reportorial skills with personal stories and fascinating data, Barbara Bradley Hagerty provides here a blueprint on aging. She debunks the idea of midlife crises while recognizing midlife changes and then, through interviews with experts and individuals, points the way to move forward into life’s next phases. This book is so engagingly told, I’ve been telling my friends to get it as soon as they can.
With humor, heart and hard-headed reporting, Barbara Bradley Hagerty manages to strike every nerve possessed by anyone entering midlife. The good news is that you end up smiling.
Grab this book, find a comfortable chair, and get ready to change the way you think about your life. Barbara Bradley Hagerty blends the latest science with rich personal reflections to create a work that informs, uplifts, and ultimately offers a wise guide to what keeps people happy and healthy. Beautifully crafted by a journalist at the top of her game, this is an exciting book that you’ll find yourself talking about and sharing with the important people in your world.
Life Reimagined is a powerful and inspiring book. Hagerty writes with wit, warmth, and scientific rigor. She shares her own experiences of the journey into midlife with honesty and humor and teaches us what science says about our brains, our resilience, and our relationships. Life Reimagined motivates us to delve into midlife with enthusiasm and reminds us that a life well lived requires thought and commitment — no matter what one’s age.
Please don’t have a midlife crisis. But if you do, drop everything and read this book. It’s like having coffee with a good friend who has been there—and also happens to be well versed in neuroscience, psychology and much more. Hagerty has written a sharp-eyed, big-hearted book destined for widespread dog-earing and underlining. Whether it’s navigating the worlds of marriage or friendship or work, Life Reimagined offers boatloads of earned epiphanies. This generous, wise and often funny book will leave you revitalized—and actually looking forward to life’s second act.
Life Reimagined is, quite simply, the best book yet written about navigating the middle years, in a way that is both deeply meaningful and that means something beyond ourselves. Barbara Bradley Hagerty is a beautiful writer, with a remarkable ability to combine moving stories with a wide array insights from the worlds of academia and research. This book is destined to become the bible for boomers seeking to make the most of the bonus decades opening up in midlife and beyond, as well as for all those younger generations coming quickly on their heels.
When veteran NPR reporter Bradley reached midlife, she decided to take a year off to interview scientists, psychologists, and a sampling of citizens about navigating middle age. Instead of crises, Bradley found studies that show men and women using these years to start new careers, face physical challenges, and find meaning in their lives. As she moves chronologically through the year, Bradley explores such topics as training your brain, keeping friends, powering thoughts, reviving a marriage, finding a purpose, rebounding from bad stuff, donating time and money, and looking for meaningful work. Interwoven with the science are her stories of caring for her aging (but still intellectually thriving) mother, training for the Senior Games, having the best vacation ever, and leaving her high-profile but stressful job. Bradley uses the perfect mixture of anecdote and facts and knows how to tell a story. Inspiring and reassuring, this book is guaranteed to shake up anyone who is coasting through middle age, reminding them that it’s up to them to find their essence and shape their last years with purpose.
Verdict: Although intended for audiences of ‘a certain age,’ younger readers in the midst of transition – college, even high school, graduates – would do well to follow Hagerty’s witty, insightful, entertaining guidance toward a more fulfilling future.
Journalist Hagerty (Fingerprints of God) presents an inspirational analysis of the midlife years (age 40 up), which she invested over a decade researching. She draws from the fields of neuroscience, psychology, genetics, and sociology, and even examines her own middle years to realize the myth of the “midlife crisis.” Hagerty reveals that physical and emotional potential in this critical phase of life does not automatically deteriorate and that many people actually experience fulfillment during this stage. The insightful chapters address topics such as how the brain ages; the importance of friends in midlife; the significance of long-term romance; dealing with inevitable medical conditions; the power of altruism; the value of meaningful work; and finding a genuine purpose. Presenting a more positive approach than found in Gail Sheehy’s Passages and Pathfinders, and more personal experiences than provided in Richard J. Leider and Alan M. Webber’s Life Reimagined: Discovering Your New Life Possibilities, Hagerty’s exploration adds a tremendous complement to developmental psychologist Erik Erikson’s classic research on psychosocial development. VERDICT This work is a joyous reminder that the middle years can be satisfying, resilient, and significant.
Barbara Bradley Hagerty © 2016