Second Wind

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

Second Wind

From one of the most original and innovative thinkers in medicine, this “stirring and splendid book” (Wall Street Journal) offers groundbreaking insight to the postwar generation on facing their second coming of age, a developmental opportunity to reshape their lives and our society.

Dr. Thomas is at the forefront of a strong nationwide movement to reframe “life after adulthood” as an exciting stage of human growth and development. In Second Wind, he explores the dreams and disappointments, the struggles and triumphs of a generation of 78 million people who once said they would never grow old and never trust anyone over thirty. Instilled with the belief that they would always be Joni Mitchell’s “stardust,” many Boomers are having a harder time transitioning into elderhood than previous generations. But the reality is that every 10.8 seconds an American turns sixty-five. Among all the human beings who have ever lived to see old age, more than half are living among us right now. In Second Wind, Dr. Thomas attempts to guide Boomers into this final developmental stage filled with hope and a new sense of what is possible.

As the Post War generation entered adulthood, they saw three models of what an adult could be: hippies, activists, and squares—the “square” model becoming the dominant model. Now, many Boomers now feel “stuck” inside the frenzied, performance-based, money-driven world that no longer suits them. But if they can learn to go slower, go deeper, and be more connected to themselves, their loved ones, and other members of their community, they can find the wisdom, happiness, and fulfillment that comes with a life that is in balance.
  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 336 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451667578 | 
  • March 2015
List Price $16.00 (price may vary by retailer)
In Stock: Usually ships within 1 business day

Teaching Resources

To download a file to your computer right-click on the link and choose 'save file as'

High Resolution Images

Any use of an author photo must include its respective photo credit

Join our Mailing List

Get our latest book recommendations, author news and sweepstakes right to your inbox

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 discuss see more

About the Author

Dr. Bill Thomas
Photograph by Jon Reis

Dr. Bill Thomas

Dr. Bill Thomas is a visionary and internationally recognized expert on aging. He is an Ashoka Fellow and winner of the Heinz Award for the Human Condition. He cocreated The Eden Alternative, an international nonprofit, and The Green House Project, both models to revolutionize nursing home care. In addition to teaching, speaking, and consulting internationally, he is currently a Senior Fellow at AARP’s Life Reimagined Institute. A graduate of the State University of New York and Harvard Medical School, he lives in Ithaca, New York with his family.

BECOME A FAN

Explore

CONNECT WITH US