Illuminating Later Life

From Baby Boomer to Luminary* as later-life Americans pursue a life that matters in the uncharted territory of increasing longevity.

* A person who mentors, inspires or influences others.

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We provide — and seek from you — original and curated items that make life
in the Bonus Years easier to understand and easier to navigate.

Retirement is surely a dead-end idea…literally. Retirement is also a recent idea….and a pretty depressing idea, at that. Look it up in the dictionary. My Oxford says to “retire” is to withdraw, go away. retreat, give up, seek seclusion. Sounds like fun! The Oxford definitions include “retiring from the world” or “to retire unto oneself” or to become unsociable, uncommunicative, withdrawn from society. Who wouldn't want to do that?

But we have a different idea. We believe that successful aging is best achieved by active engagement with others.

Bonus Years Biographies

The Length of Our Days

Days in the average American life span

Average life expectancy
in days at age 65

Chances to leave
a legacy

"It’s better to wear out than rust out.”  That is the message of Reboot!  For men and women navigating change and planning for life’s transitions – all the while striving to finish well – Reboot! provides a roadmap for living a life of meaning, challenging the reader to be a Luminary not a retiree.  Burgess boldly asserts that retirement is a deadly disease, and that work after a life of work is the best option for post-career years that are meaningful, productive, healthy, and satisfying.

Bonus Years Columns

Unabridged articles from my weekly Bonus Years column in the
Lifestyle section of The Sunday Capital Gazette, Annapolis, Maryland

Dr. Fauci’s knowledge and authority show value of age and experience in pandemic management and messaging

by Phil Burgess, Unabridged from the Life section of the Annapolis Sunday Capital, Sunday, March 29, 2020 How old is...

Dr. Deborah Birx is the grandmother coordinating the White House response to the coronavirus

by Phil Burgess, Unabridged from the Life section of the Sunday Capital, Sunday, March 22, 2020 “I’m also a grandmother.”...

Bonus Years on Changing the Rules Podcast

Listen as we chat with Ray Loewe about living with purpose in your Bonus Years! EPISODE SUMMARY "It's better to...

Stuff matters less in retirement. Give experiences.

by Phil Burgess, Unabridged from the Life section of the Sunday Capital, Sunday, December 22, 2019 With only three shipping...

Life is enriched when we carry life-long interests into retirement

by Phil Burgess, Unabridged Bonus Years column from the Life section of the Annapolis Capital, Sunday, December 8, 2019 As...

From Okinawa to Eastport, WWII vet still engaged

by Phil Burgess, Unabridged from the Life section of the Sunday Capital, Sunday, December 29, 2019 (image above) "Seabees landing...

Nice to meet you!

I’m a Bonus Years guy. My business is helping Luminaries navigate age-related transitions – and writing interesting stories about those who do it successfully.
My aim: To inspire others to do the same.

The Annapolis Institute is a private, nonpartisan think tank. The Institute, established in 1993, has two purposes: (1) To help leadership at all levels to anticipate the forces shaping the lives of people, communities, and institutions in the 21st century -- including technology, demography, politics, the economy and culture; and (2) to advance principled leadership in the management of business enterprises, government agencies and non-profit organizations.

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