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Second Wind

Second Wind

Navigating the Passage to a Slower, Deeper, and More Connected Life

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How do you know that you are outgrowing adulthood?

When you begin to feel that the life you have been living is out of balance; when the need to perform, to hurry, and to acquire is no longer compelling. It’s like the moment when your favorite tennis shoes start to give you blisters. The way you’ve been living your adult life doesn’t fulfill you anymore.

Dr. Bill Thomas, one of the most innovative thinkers in medicine, explains that a new life phase is beginning to emerge within our society. When the Baby Boom generation came of age in the 1960s and 1970s, they jump-started a cultural revolution that shaped today’s society. Now, many feel they are living a life of frenzied disharmony. This out-of-balance feeling is a signal that you are ready for your second coming of age, your life beyond adult­hood. Second Wind illuminates how to recognize and navigate the most challenging and fulfilling developmental stage of life.

Life can and should be reimagined. New ways of living and working are waiting to be discovered on the far side of adulthood. Dr. Thomas treats the Baby Boom generation as he would one of his patients, sympathetically exploring its history before recommending a path toward a life rich with developmental opportunities. Predicting that Boomers will choose the path of the Denialist, the Realist, or the Enthusiast, he discusses the behav­iors and attitudes that will provide new and more nourishing fuel for the rest of life’s journey: hope and a renewed sense of all that is possible.
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  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 336 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451667561 | 
  • March 2014
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Second Wind includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


Introduction

In today's society, childhood and adulthood are clearly defined stages in an individual's life and development. But what about after? The postwar generation is currently facing a crossroads between embracing what comes after middle age, fighting to delay the inevitable, and denying its imminence altogether. In Second Wind: Navigating the Passage to a Slower, Deeper, and More Connected Life, Dr. Bill Thomas expertly analyzes the origins of koyaanisqatsi, or a way of living that calls for another way of living. Dating back to the birth of postwar subcultures and through the rise and impending triumph of Denialists, Second Wind is a revealing examination of a society fervently worshiping the cult of adulthood. Dr. Thomas argues that there is, indeed, a third stage to life—one that is just as fulfilling if not more fulfilling than adulthood—and it’s not too late for the postwar generation to embrace it.

Topics & Questions for Discussion

1. In Second Wind, Dr. Bill Thomas discusses how parenting instr see more

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