55, Underemployed, and Faking Normal: Your Guide to a Better Life
Hardcover – January 8, 2019
Elizabeth White has an impressive resume, which includes advanced degrees from Harvard and Johns Hopkins and a distinguished employment history. She started a business that failed and then tried to re-enter the work force in her mid-fifties, only to learn that there is little demand for workers her age, even with her outstanding resume. Her retirement savings account was largely depleted by her business. For a while Elizabeth lived in denial, but then had to begin to adjust to her new reality, shedding the gym membership, getting a roommate, forgoing restaurant meals, and so on. She soon learned she wasn’t alone: there are millions of Americans in her predicament and worse, exhausted trying to survive and overcome every day.
In 55, Underemployed, and Faking Normal, Elizabeth invites you to join her in looking beyond your immediate surroundings and circumstances to what is possible in the new normal of financial insecurity. You’re in your fifties and sixties, like Elizabeth, and may have saved nothing or not nearly enough to retire. It’s too late for blame or shame—and it wouldn’t help anyway. What you want to know is what you can do now to have a shot at a decent retirement. Or, as Elizabeth puts it, “small up to create the best possible life on less income.”
Affirming and empowering, this book is a must-have for anyone whose income has suddenly diminished or even disappeared. With more than 100 online resources, it guides you through the emotional aspects of where you’ve landed and offers practical advice and options. If you’re ready to stop beating up on yourself and get serious about feeling good again, this book is for you.
“Every so often someone names an invisible pattern in society with such honesty and accuracy that it becomes a seed of a national conversation. Elizabeth White has brought to light the unexpected challenges of Boomers turning the corner into older age. She offers straight talk to her generation while giving everyone an eye-opening look at the travails of aging out of relevance in America.” (Vicki Robin, author of Your Money or Your Life and Blessing the Hands That Feed Us)
“This relevant and well-researched book will appeal not only to those 55 plus, but to the generation coming right behind them who may face similar issues.” (Booklist (starred review))
"Providing practical solutions with a focus on retirement and maximizing savings, White maintains authority with a realistic, empathetic tone throughout. This deeply useful work will resonate with aging readers of all income levels and situations." (Publishers Weekly)
About the Author
Elizabeth White is an author and seasoned nonprofit executive with domestic and international expertise in economic development, aging solutions, and gender equality. Ms. White earned an MBA from Harvard Business School, a Masters in International Studies from Johns Hopkins University, and a BS in Political Science from Oberlin College. She has written for Next Avenue, Forbes, Huffington Post, The American Society on Aging newsletter, Encore.org, and Sixty and Me. She has also been featured in The Christian Science Monitor and AARP Disrupt Aging newsletter. She resides in Washington, DC, with her daughter and grandson. She is the author of 55, Unemployed, and Faking Normal.