Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart: Thirty True Things You Need to Know Now

Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart: Thirty True Things You Need to Know Now

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by Gordon Livingston, James Jenner, Frank Muller
     
 

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After service in Vietnam, as a surgeon for the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in 1968-69, at the height of the war, Dr. Gordon Livingston returned to the U.S. and began work as a psychiatrist. In that capacity, he has listened to people talk about their lives-what works, what doesn’t, and the limitless ways (many of them self-inflicted) that people find to be

Overview

After service in Vietnam, as a surgeon for the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in 1968-69, at the height of the war, Dr. Gordon Livingston returned to the U.S. and began work as a psychiatrist. In that capacity, he has listened to people talk about their lives-what works, what doesn’t, and the limitless ways (many of them self-inflicted) that people find to be unhappy. He is also a parent twice bereaved; in one thirteen-month period, he lost his eldest son to suicide, his youngest to leukemia. Out of a lifetime of experience, Gordon Livingston has extracted thirty bedrock truths: We are what we do. Any relationship is under the control of the person who cares the least. The perfect is the enemy of the good. Only bad things happen quickly. Forgiveness is a form of letting go, but they are not the same thing. The statute of limitations has expired on most of our childhood traumas. Livingston illuminates these and twenty-four others in a series of carefully hewn, perfectly calibrated essays, many of which focus on our closest relationships and the things that we do to impede or, less frequently, enhance them. Again and again, these essays underscore that "we are what we do,” and that while there may be no escaping who we are, we have the capacity to face loss, misfortune, and regret and to move beyond them-that it is not too late. Full of things we may know but have not articulated to ourselves, Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart offers solace, guidance, and hope to everyone ready to become the person they’d most like to be.

Editorial Reviews

For Dr. Gordon Livingston, personal tragedy has been a stellar teacher. As a young man, he witnessed life at the edge as an army physician during the Vietnam War. Since then, as a career psychiatrist, he has not only counseled his patients on their deepest problems; he has suffered great losses himself, losing two of his sons: one to leukemia, another to suicide. In Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart, Dr. Livingston distills 30 bedrock life lessons that have strengthened him and his clients.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781419363566
Publisher:
Recorded Books, LLC
Publication date:
10/10/2005
Edition description:
Unabridged, 4 CDs, 5 hours
Pages:
4
Product dimensions:
5.26(w) x 5.74(h) x 0.56(d)

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Gordon Livingston, M.D., a graduate of West Point and the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, has been a physician since 1967. He is a psychiatrist and writer who contributes frequently to the Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Baltimore Sun, and Reader’s Digest. Awarded the Bronze Star for valor in Vietnam, he is the author of two other books, And Never Stop Dancing and Only Spring: On Mourning the Death of My Son. He lives and works in Columbia, Maryland.

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Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart: Hirty True Things You Need to Know Now 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 21 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Though the 'things' presented in this book may sound familiar to someone in his/her later life, they have the ring of many discussions I have had with my angst-ridden 17-year-old daughter. The book is affirming to a parent trying to raise a healthy-minded child while still going through his own challenges! I love the affirming quality of the writing, not preachy, not patronizing, but very objective.
RebaTX More than 1 year ago
Makes you look at your life and how you have and are living it. Very worthwhile.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is a wonderful, insightful report of a journey of a therapist's life and his conclusions about our choices and reactions to them. I so applaud his 'the buck stops here' attitude in taking responsibility for our own actions. A total must read--please bring kleenex, you will need it time and time again as this books jogs your own reflections of life!
Guest More than 1 year ago
TOO SOON OLD, TOO LATE SMART is a brief compendium of an experienced therapist¿s accumulated wisdom, honed both by his work with his patients and by his own experiences with extraordinary personal loss. Each short chapter discusses a truth about how to negotiate the emotional and interpersonal dilemmas with which we all must deal in our journey through life. A common thread throughout the book is the author¿s belief in our responsibility for our choices and their consequences. Within this context, he debunks the validity of widely accepted clinical entities such as Dissociative Identity Disorder and Adult Attention Deficit Disorder that he believes are often used as excuses to mitigate responsibility for behavior. While at times opinionated, Dr. Livington¿s work contains enough pearls of wisdom to instruct the lives of any reader willing to undertake the self-examination and self-discipline essential to living a full and satisfying life.
Smartsloan More than 1 year ago
Thirty chapters on subjects which are nothing new to anyone but still worth exploring. Reader beware:This is just one single person's opinions and these opinions are distorted by unfathomable grief, a look at life that is so dark, unhopeful and full of downright despair, I had to stop reading at page 118 with the most depressing toast, written for his daughter's wedding. After days and days of feeling down-trodden while reading this book, I finally had to put this book down, without finishing it - only the second time in my entire 64 years of reading, to not complete a book - I simply could not muddle through one more page of "life sucks, why bother living successfully?" Yes, it has a somewhat catchy title. If you can't write properly, maybe turn the words around and that will make one look a little more thoughtful? Nice try, but not really. The 30 chapters also have catchy titles but that's where the depth stops. Diving into this book is like hoping you are stepping into a limitless well of refreshing insight that might carry deep thoughts which you can take home to enrich your own outlook and life. What I stepped into was nothing but a sniveling, shallow pothole of depressing muck. Besides the fact that this book is so poorly written grammatically, the morose content may take me weeks or months to extract from my thoughts and return myself to a life of joy and hopefulness. Just because someone has MD after their name doesn't mean they can write properly, and just because someone has experienced unbelievable pain, loss and grief, doesn't mean they learned enough to truly help others come through the journey successfully. How about Chapter 31: Misery loves company and a cute title doesn't change that fact. Misery still loves company. I deeply regret getting sucked into the despair of this book just because it said "National Best Seller." Now I know why so many Americans (the nation) are depressed, thanks to junk being published with a slick cover, just like this book by Gordon Livingston.
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imnotauser More than 1 year ago
with some thoughts that are hard to replicate
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Each chapter of this book talks about about a different area of hardship we all encounter throughout our lives. Taking responsibility for your actions is a theme throughout. I like the writing as it makes you think about causes and effect of choices in life, which is something many of us do not think enough about.