I was driving from the Liverpool ferry back to Cambridge on the evening of Sunday 19th August when I heard Lynda Gratton talking on Radio 4's 9.30pm 'In Business' slot, called 'Retiring Retirement'. It's a topic that, at the ripe old age of 45, I've been mulling over of late, having taken the decision to work 4 days a week instead of 5, something that has revolutionized my life. (More energy, more enthusiasm, more interest.)
I had already heard of Lynda Gratton because my wee sis had been impressed by a talk Lynda gave at a workplace well-being conference that sis attended in the Big Smoke recently. I was hoping that Lynda's new book 'I, human' had come out already so I popped into Waterstones to ask about it. As it doesn't seem to have been published yet, 'The 100-year Life - Living and Working in an Age of Longevity' was the next best thing, although, with a quick search on the Spydus app, I saw that it was available at the library so nipped there to borrow it for free rather than pay at Waterstones ;) 'Brilliant, timely, original,well written and utterly terrifying', is the first review on the back cover. I'm not far into it yet but am inhaling the insights thus far.
This evening at the 'Meet the 6th Form tutors' event for parents, in my introductory talk I found myself including bits and pieces from Lynda's book to demonstrate how we, parents and tutors, will need to be helping students grasp that their future lives might look very different to ours. A 20-year old these days has a 50% chance of living to more than 100. With that knowledge comes the need for preparation and adaptability. With foresight and planning, a long life can be a gift, not a curse. How we choose to use and structure the time we are given is at the heart of the response to living longer.
ps 'A Normal ... Imagination' with Henry Norman, which aired at 7.15pm on Sunday 19th August on Radio 4 is also well worth a listen, in my opinion. I nearly turned over right at the beginning but really warmed to it and then even shed a tear near the end.
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