Psychologist and best-selling author Charles Garfield shares an uplifting vision as he takes us on a journey of a lifetime.
Some of the most profound growth of our lives can happen in the home stretch, the years after age sixty or so. It’s a time when we can finally crystallize the meaning of what we’ve been and done and fully expand into the self we’ve always intended to be. But, says psychologist Charles Garfield, that can only happen if we first loosen the grip of the life we’ve led so far, the one that’s been focused outwardly—on activity, achievement, and the idea of success—and let our souls lead the way.
In Our Wisdom Years, Dr. Garfield skillfully and practically guides readers through nine tasks that can transform the struggles of aging, bringing fulfillment, joy, and serenity. Drawing on the understandings that come from both his work as acclaimed “success guru” in the 1980s and the truths distilled from volunteering with those at the end of life, Garfield offers a fresh, uplifting vision of the wholeness that awaits us.
Dr. Garfield shares how we can gracefully let go of the younger selves we’ve been and walk through the opening that keeps beckoning toward this soul-driven version of later life. He encourages us to take the risk of being fully alive as our years pass. This is no small task—aging is not for the faint of heart! The beautiful paradox of growing older is that none of the gifts of age are available without the kind of loss that forces us to confront mortality in a way we can’t deny. In the face of loss, we’re changed and expanded by truths that come from the heart, not the mind. We learn that we’re more than our bodies, part of something much larger than we are, and that love and kindness matter most of all.
Our Wisdom Years: Growing Older with Joy, Fulfillment, Resilience, and No Regrets
By Charles Garfield, PhD
Central Recovery Press
New Spirit Journal
Review By Krista Gibson
If we’re lucky and it is in alignment with our soul purpose, we will grow old someday. Many people just stumble into growing older instead of seeing it as the rich time of life it can be. In Our Wisdom Years, Garfield, who is 75, leads readers through a process that can make the difference between getting old and growing older with joy, fulfillment, resilience, and no regrets.
Through a series of nine tasks, readers can …gain a clearer sense of who you’ve been, how your choices have shaped you, and what’s at your core… (which) enables you to embrace the freedom of being fully yourself in later life and then in old age. If you’re 50 or older, this book could have a huge impact on your later years. Folks in their 80s and 90s can find a wonderful guide to living meaningfully rather than feeling they have been sent out to pasture.
Through doing a life review and learning how to forgive and let go, to living with a grateful attitude, Garfield shares many stories from his own life and that of friends, family, and workshop attendees that brings his ideas to life and grounds them in everyday living.
This is definitely a book to be savored, pondered, and digested rather than rushed through. It would make an outstanding book for a book club or study group to use together. With over 25% of the population being 65 or older by 2030, there are a lot of people who could benefit from working and playing with the concepts in Our Wisdom Years.