Thursday, August 4, 2011

Book Review - Fortytude by Sarah Brokaw

Book Review #3 - Fortytude by Sarah Brokaw

It is no secret that I am struggling with turning 40.  For what it is worth, my birthday is in October and thus, I have invited everyone I know to join me in Vegas for a weekend blow-out.  If I gotta roll into a new decade, I'm going to have one hell of a time doing it!  When my girlfriend, Cyndee, said she was reading this book, I thought "I need all the help I can get; I'll give it a try."

And I haven't regretted it for a single minute.  I checked out the book from the library and after reading the first chapter, I bought a copy for myself.  I want to read it a second (or third) time, able to highlight main concepts and/or quotes.  According to the author, who interviewed over 300 women from across the nation, there are five core values for making the shift into my fifth decade of life:  Grace, Connectedness, Accomplishment, Adventure, and Spirituality.

"With grace, you rise above your difficulties with a calm wisdom, judging neither yourself nor others.  Through connectedness, you form and maintain mutually supportive relationships with other people.  When you are accomplished, you have mastery over one or more areas in your life, deriving a well-deserved sense of pride from these activities.  Adventure leads you to take on new challenges regardless of your age, making the most of the opportunities that surround you.  And spirituality brings you in touch with your innermost essence, offering you access to strength and joy through hard times as well as brilliant ones. "  Pg 258 

The author impeccably wove interviews throughout the book, giving the reader a strong sense of connection to each core value.  The author gave personal stories for each core value, as well.  Thus, as with Tina Fey, I felt myself wanting to sit with Ms. Brokaw, a glass of wine, and chat it up.  The book was laid out well and easy to follow.  And, it made me think.  I'm a big fan of a book that makes me think.  If you are someone who is struggling with change in age, then I highly recommend this book.  And if you are one who is ok with your change in age, I applaud you.  You're a better person than I.

Can I say that I'm that much more ready to turn 40 because of this book?  Hell no.  I still hate the very idea of turning 40.  But I'm going to do my best to accept it with grace, connecting with loved ones, celebrating my accomplishments, enjoy the adventure of my new job, and learn to find my innermost strengths.

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