We Need You Now More Than Ever! Introducing A Manifesto For Change

Regardless of which side of the political aisle you favor, the past two weeks have been divisive and stressful.
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Regardless of which side of the political aisle you favor, the past two weeks have been divisive and stressful. One faith-based organization summed it up well: "The sense of mutual alienation and lack of understanding across our society have never been so profound... There are clearly many challenges ahead and many gulfs to bridge."

We are left with a country more divided than ever before. The luxury of time spent complaining is over. What we must do now is step up and help bring our country, our communities and families together. There has never been a more critical time!

Why you?
If you are between the ages of about 45-65, you are a middlescent. It's kind of like being an adolescent with wisdom born of years of life experience. You have the vitality, the wisdom, and the hunger for standing up for what you care about. It is time to break out of our self-imposed, cultural shackles that used to define midlife as a "no man's land" on the way to old age.

Middlescence can be the most powerful time of your life. Like a second adolescence, it's a stage of change, growth, and action for those bold enough to take it. I've been told that I'm way ahead of the curve on this. I'm happy to report that at least on this front, things are looking up!

Here is why:
You are at your creative peak:
In 2014, 52 percent of new entrepreneurs in the United States were Middlescents (45-64 years); that's a 37 percent increase in less than two decades!

You are happier:

As a culture, our rates of self-reported happiness begin to rise when we hit 50, and continue upward for the rest of our lives.

You can create the change we need now
These Purpose Prize winners are "regular folks" who tapped into their inner resources to create change and to serve others.

Pam read an article about a small town in Illinois where children were living on dirt floors and going hungry. She organized her friends -- and Fed Ex -- to deliver food to these families each month. Word spread and today she runs Family-to-Family, a nonprofit that addresses the needs of the 46 million Americans and 15 million children living in food-insecure households, and addresses the growing lack of empathy toward those less fortunate. Twenty thousand meals are provided each month to struggling families in 27 American communities in 18 states.

James, a Viet Nam combat soldier, learned the power of music of soothing the stress of combat. He would come in from the jungle and play guitar at the service club, firebases and hospitals. He returned home and was a successful musician who wrote symphonies but never confronted his real feelings about his time in Vietnam. After a return visit he realized he wasn't the only veteran struggling since his return. Over time James created the United States Veterans Art Program (USVAP) to provide art resources to veterans' facilities for therapy. USVAP works with 45 facilities in 20 states, reaching more than 10,000 veterans.

There are many ways to tap into your desire to serve -- be curious, speak out, sign-up and know that one person can make an enormous impact. If only a small percentage of the 80 million middlescents today focus on service to create change, our communities and our country would be a very different place.
"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world." -- Anne Frank
The world is moving fast. People want help right NOW. With that in mind, I'm proud to share The Middlescence Manifesto, and it's free for anyone who wants a new way of thinking about and approaching their life and helping heal the rifts that are so very dangerous.

The Middlescence Manifesto underscores the importance of owning your power, your history and taking action in your life and the lives of others. Take a read and let me know what you think. I want you to have the knowledge and tools to be the author of your life story and to write our collective future, one person at a time. When you find that place, you can be of greater service to your family, your workplace, your community and the world. Consider the power of millions of middlescents spreading that kind of goodness into in our world. We have never needed it more!

Earlier on Huff/Post50:

Betty White
Doesn't it seem like Betty White has been around since David torpedoed Goliath with a slingshot? Our favorite golden girl is only 94 though. Even though Miss Betty White began her career in the 1940s on radio, and later appeared on late night talk shows and game shows (including "Password") in the 50s and 60s, she wasn't really a household name until, at the age of 51, she began playing "The Happy Homemaker" Sue Ann Nivens on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" (1973-1977).
Morgan Freeman
Who doesn't love Morgan Freeman? This Academy Award winner paid his dues and then some. Freeman worked for several years as an actor, but really came into his own playing chauffeur Hoke Colburn in "Driving Miss Daily" at the age of 52 (although he was 50 when he was nominated for Best Supporting Actor in the film "Street Smart").
Sharon Osbourne
Heavy metal vocalist Ozzy Osbourne has been famous for over 40 years as lead singer of the English band Black Sabbath. His wife, Sharon, however, did not become a household name until their family reality show "The Osbournes" premiered on MTV in 2002. Just barely 50, Sharon became a media darling, which opened up many doors. She went on to become a judge on "America's Got Talent" and has been co-host of the CBS daytime show "The Talk" since it debuted in October 2010.
Regis Philbin
Regis Philbin was comedian Joey Bishop's sidekick on the ABC television show "The Joey Bishop Show" from 1967 to 1969 and hosted his own local talk show -- "A.M. Los Angeles" -- from 1975 to 1983. But his name wasn't exactly on the tip of our collective tongues until he became a daytime staple with Kathie Lee Gifford in 1988 on "Live with Regis and Kathie Lee" when he was 57. His vibrant, caustic, yet fun-loving personality pushed him over the top sometime after the show began to gain in popularity with daytime viewers.
Abe Vigoda
Born in 1921, Abe Vigoda captured the role of Salvatore Tessio in the film "The Godfather" in 1972 at the age of 51. His next big role came in 1975 when he signed on to play Sgt. Phil Fish on the television series "Barney Miller." And that's when Vigoda -- who passed away in 2016 -- really became a household name.
Tom Bergeron
Sure, Tom Bergeron became the host of "Hollywood Squares" in 1998 and of "America's Funniest Home Videos" in 2001, but he didn't really become widely known until joining the wildly popular "Dancing With the Stars." The amiable host was 50 when the show premiered in 2005. After more than 20 seasons as host, it appears he's a keeper.
Mike Wallace
Maybe Mike Wallace was well-known in some hard-core news circles, and perhaps he was on a first-name basis with a few news junkies many moons ago, but it wasn't until he laid his groundwork as a superb gotcha reporter on "60 Minutes" which he did from 1968 (after he turned 50) until 2008 -- that his star really began to shine. This well-respected news journalist sadly passed away on April 7, 2012 at the age of 93.
Samuel L. Jackson
Gabe Ginsberg via Getty Images
Born in 1948, Samuel L. Jackson appeared in more than 100 films before the age of 40. However, it was only after he landed the role of a hitman in "Pulp Fiction" in 1994 that his star really began to shine. For this performance, Jackson received a Best Supporting Actor nomination.
Andy Rooney
Andy Rooney is another personality that seems to have been around since the beginning of time, and we're all glad to have been the recipients of his off-the-wall satirical takes on human nature. In 1978, at the age of 59, Rooney began his "A Few Minutes with Andy Rooney" segment on the CBS news show "60 Minutes," continuing through 2011. He made us laugh, he made us cry, he made us think. It doesn't get better than that. Rooney died on November 4, 2011 at the age of 92 only a few weeks after his last appearance on the show.
Joy Behar
Joy Behar was 54 when she was cast as one of the original members of "The View," which made its debut in August 1997. A few years before that, you could catch Behar doing hilarious stand-up comedy on television. But she only became a household name sometime after "The View" became a must-see, daytime television talk show.
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