Welcome to The Second Act

These posts first appeared in The Hobson magazine. It’s about the commitment to reinvention at mid life.

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  • The Best Word For It

    Around the time this edition is published, most readers will have surrendered to the bacchanalian overindulgence that marks the silly season, letting keto, paleo and possibly even vegan disciplines slide and having that ‘just the one’ glass of champagne — every night. As they reach for just another canapé, their guilt is assuaged by reassuring nonsense conjured up by their

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  • My Perfectly Imperfect Christmas

    When the kids were young, and my husband and I wanted to role-model being charitable and Christmassy, we would reserve a Saturday in December to drag them around various rest homes to bring Christmas greetings to elderly relatives. For our children, it was their least favourite day of the year. Kissing whiskered aunties and honorary relatives, their connection to whom they

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  • Working on Ourselves

    By Sandy Burgham Over my last few columns, I have pondered the question of second act career fulfilment, and encouraged you to go back into childhood memories to consider what you loved to do when left to your own devices, away from the influences of the opinions of others. There are clues in this as to what kinds of activities

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  • Telling Ourselves Stories

    By Sandy Burgham We all like a good story, it’s hardwired into us. Professor Yuval Noah Harari suggests in his book, Sapiens, that the reason homo sapien shot to the top of the food chain was not just our ability to create stories, but to believe in them. Our narratives, shared and personal, are a big part of our identity. There’s

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  • The Long Game

    By Sandy Burgham My husband and I are going through a good patch in our marriage. Today he spent a lot of time preparing the wood-fired hot tub at the bach, did the dishes twice, and made elaborate pizzas. This is getting into perfect man territory. To be honest, that’s all it takes to turn me into a nicer person

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  • When I Grew Up

    By Sandy Burgham One of the biggest questions people pose at midlife is, “what do I really want to be doing with my life?” On a recent trip to the UK I did a short course on career development, which explored the idea that a fulfilling career should be a grown-up version of who you were, and what you loved doing,

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  • The B-All

    By Sandy Burgham I don’t usually agree with a thing that comes out of the mouth of property developer Sir Bob Jones, but I do concur with him on one thing — the value of an arts degree, and specifically, a liberal arts degree. For those still stuck in an era where a Bachelor of Arts was mocked as “BA

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  • Peace be Upon You

    By Sandy Burgham My mother used to instruct me not to take life too seriously, to be really present every day, as you never know when something unexpected could occur and end life as you know it. For her it was a blinding flash of light, then a bomb that destroyed her school, many friends, and in fact her whole

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  • Go Ahead, Caller

    by Sandy Burgham So they left within three weeks of each other. Poof! Vanished, these human beings who took up so much of my oxygen during the last 23 years — one to Mexico, the other to Wellington. As they left on their respective adventures, they expressed concern. “Will you be ok Mum? I mean there is Dad, but .

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  • What do I know?

    by Sandy Burgham                           I live in fear that my children will never be able to earn money after a lifetime of me probably doing too much for them, and in particular, for encouraging my daughter to go to art school. They assure me that “you just don’t

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