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Author Uses Midlife Crisis To Change Her Life

Eileen Flanagan

Midlife is loosely defined in our culture as usually sometime in your 40s. It is often a time many of us take stock of who we have become and what goals we have reached or have yet to attain.

Many people react to this existential angst by making extravagant purchases, others decide to travel around the world.

After author Eileen Flanagan realized she was not living the life she wanted to be living, she turned her life upside down. She left her job, joined a Quaker activist group, handcuffed herself to the White House and pursued her passion for the environment.

The book that came out of that journey is called Renewable: One Woman’s Search for Simplicity, Faithfulness, and Hope.

"It was kind of just looking around and realizing we have too much stuff. We have too many e-mails, we have too much to do, and we have lost focus on the things that are really most important," Flanagan says.

For Flanagan, finding her way meant revisiting old journals and life experiences that brought her joy, such as her time in the Peace Corps living in a mud hut in Botswana. The process made her feel isolated, as she struggled to find what she wanted. Only after she stumbled across a group of singing Quaker activists did she feel more complete. She then rediscovered her passion for sustainability, the environment and find her voice and power.

Eileen Flanagan will be at Boswell Book Company Thursday evening to talk about her book.