Friday, December 19, 2008


If you’re looking for a Christmas present to buy for someone or yourself, I highly recommend you get your hands on John Izzo’s latest book “The five secrets you must discover before you die” . Ok, ok, I know the word ‘die’ might not go down well with most people, especially seniors like us. But, hey, let’s get rid of that mental block and give John a chance to present his case.

This book is for everyone. We do not know when our time is up. Life can be short, life can be long. Why do some people die happy with a smile on their face while others feel life has short-changed them and left them with only bitterness, pain and regret?

In my research on the oldest people in the world, I’ve discovered that some find old age a burden and wonder why their time has not yet come, while others want to stay on, god-willing, to enjoy more great years. We need only to look around us to find examples of either group from among our own circle of family members and friends. What separates one group from the other?

Thanks to John Izzo, we now have some answers. He invited 15,000 viewers of his TV show “The 5 things you must discover before you die” to nominate someone whom they know has lived a long life and has something important to teach us about living. From the 1000 names nominated, John interviewed 235 people, aged 60 to 106, to seek their wisdom.

Some of the questions John asked at the interviews:

~What has brought you the greatest sense of meaning and purpose in life?
~Why does it matter that you are alive?
~What brings you or has brought you the most happiness in life?
~Tell me one major ‘crossroad’ moment in your life, and the difference it made in how your life turned out.
~What do you wish you had learned sooner?
~How do you feel about your own mortality?

Those interviewed came from diverse backgrounds in profession, religion, culture and status. Yet their answers revealed a commonality in the things that matter most to them. John has condensed their answers into these five secrets:

Be true to yourself.
Leave no regrets.
Become love.
Live the moment.
Give more than you take.

The cynics among us will brush these ‘secrets’ aside and say “Everybody knows that! Nothing new there”. Maybe so, but it requires a humongous leap of faith to get people to take action. Surely we all agree that mere knowledge is not enough. The key is to apply what we know.

If you haven’t planned your goals for the new year, consider including these five secrets among your goals for 2009. The book is available at all major bookstores in the country. If you can’t get hold of a copy, you are welcome to borrow mine. Click here for a video snapshot of the book.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! I’ll be away in Germany during the festive season, but will keep in touch via the Internet.

1 comment:

Starmandala said...

Goodness me... haven't read your blog for some weeks now... but wow! you've taken it to a whole new level in terms of writing quality & visual presentation! Great work, Sexy Grandma! :-) xoxox

P.S. Didn't know you were all going to Germany... but now I do! Wunderbar und Frohe Weihnachten! ;-)