Act 3: the art of growing older by Judy Reith and Adrian Reith

We re living longer, in better health, with higher expectations than any generation in human history. With an extra adult chapter to look forward to, what will you do? Who else could you be? How will you evolve the best plan for your life between 50 and 80?

Judy and Adrian Reith have decades of experience in helping people see hidden possibilities, clarify their goals and achieve life-changing results. In Act 3 they suggest practical steps to make your life more fulfilling as you age. From the ground up this book will help you identify and strengthen the four roots you ll need for a happy and successful third act. It illustrates how your attitude, purpose, relationships and values are keystones to a life without regret.

Act 3 gives tools and tips to help you focus on what matters, with chapters on Work, Home, Money, Health, Play, the World and Friends. You ll be inspired by original stories of those who have changed their lives after 50 and be able to re-imagine your future, and so get the life you want . . . at last.


My review

The synopsis above gives a very good summary of what the book is about, so all that remains is for me to assure you that this book is very well-written, informative and motivational. I’m in this particular Act of our lives so it’s all extremely relevant, as it will be for anyone who is 50 and upwards.

The tone is upbeat and encouraging. Straddling that 50 mark can be daunting, especially for women when it insists on dragging all the drama of menopause with it. Also around this time, frequently children are teetering on the edge of the nest if they haven’t already jumped, so you really do start to feel that your useful, productive phase is over and it’s going to be downhill all the way from here. Well, as this book joyously and emphatically tells us, the good news is that it isn’t. In fact, it may even prove to be the most rewarding time of your life. With the pressures removed of having to earn a living and putting children and/or other family members first, you can start to blossom, even if it’s unusual for a tree to bloom in autumn! The authors use the image of tree to work through various elements such as managing work, play and home.

Whilst being positive and cheering, the book does touch on the less appealing elements of aging such as death and depression, the former of which is definitely going to crop up at some point and the latter, whilst not quite as inevitable, will usually show its face from time to to time. The authors discuss these negatives in a business-like and reassuring way and then move on to positive coping strategies. The key thing to bring away is their advice of ‘forget regret’ by moving on and making plans to make the best of this most precious of limited resources: life.

Throughout this excellent, affirmative book there are little exercises to do, anecdotes to enjoy, advice to absorb and short summaries to emphasise the important issues raised.

I definitely feel more upbeat and inspired having read it. Like the rest of us, I don’t know how much time I’ve got left, but bring it on! I feel much more empowered now about living it to the full.

About the authors

Judy Reith has been a coach and parenting expert for twenty years. She draws on her professional training in child development, coaching and parent education to help thousands of parents, some of whom are also entering Act 3. She is the author of 7 Secrets of Raising Girls Every Parent Must Know; Be a Great Mum and Transform Living with Teenagers. Adrian Reith ditched a successful career as a writer and director in advertising to help people unscramble their mental spaghetti. Having re-trained as a coach he works with business and organisational leaders and individuals to help them make the most of life and work. He and Judy live together in Cambridge. @Act3Life


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