As the baby boomer generation reaches retirement age, an unprecedented number of Americans will soon be 55 or older, with a longer life expectancy than any previous generation. The question is on the minds of older adults is "How do I age well?"

By looking at the basic issues that accompany growing older — health, finances, relationships, and finding new ways to spend one's time creatively — readers will learn to develop a plan to age happily.

Using her own inspirational life as a backdrop, and applying her considerable experience as a psychologist, Schlossberg looks at aging through the lens of positive psychology.

Revealing interviews with older adults from a wide variety of backgrounds as well as an approachable discussion of psychological theories help teach readers the principles of aging well, including:

  • resolving your love–hate relationship with aging
  • dealing with ageism
  • embracing change
  • diversifying your coping skills
  • creating your retirement fantasy
  • coping with health challenges
  • understanding your family transitions
  • handling intimacy and romance
Table of Contents



I. Resolve Your Love–Hate Relationship With Aging

  1. Talk Back to Your Mirror
  2. Just Say No to Ageism

II. Understand Transitions

  1. Embrace Change
  2. Diversify Your Coping Skills

III. Navigate the Many Transitions of Aging

  1. Create Your Own Retirement Fantasy
  2. Choose Your Place: Location, Location, Location
  3. Cope With Health Challenges
  4. Understand Your Family Transitions

IV. Create the New You

  1. Keep Your Dance Card Full: Pay Attention to Friends, Family, and Fun
  2. Go for Romance (If You Want It)
  3. Create Your Own Happiness: Your Path to Positive Aging



About the Author

Author Bio

Nancy K. Schlossberg, EdD, is Professor Emerita, Department of Counseling and Personnel Services, College of Education at the University of Maryland. She previously served on the faculties of Wayne State University, Howard University, and Pratt Institute. She was the first woman executive at the American Council of Education (ACE), where she established the Office of Women in Higher Education (1973). She later served as a senior Fellow at ACE's Center on Adult Learning.

She has published nine books, including Counseling Adults in Transition: Linking Schlossberg's Theory With Practice in a Diverse World (4th ed., 2012, with M. L. Anderson and J. Goodman); Revitalizing Retirement: Reshaping Your Identity, Relationships, and Purpose (2009); Overwhelmed: Coping With Life's Ups and Downs (2nd ed., 2007, with M. Evans); Retire Smart, Retire Happy: Finding Your True Path in Life (2004); Getting the Most Out of College (2001, with A. Chickering); and Going to Plan B (1996, with S. Robinson).

Dr. Schlossberg has delivered more than 100 keynote addresses and has been quoted in cover stories in USA Today, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Sarasota's Herald-Tribune, Reader's Digest, Family Circle, Better Homes and Gardens, U.S. News & World Report, Consumer Reports. She was featured in a 90-minute PBS Pledge Special in June 2007, "Retire Smart, Retire Happy."

Dr. Schlossberg is a Fellow in three APA divisions; Fellow, Gerontological Association; APA's G. Stanley Hall Lecturer on Adult Development; and Distinguished Scholar at the University of Maryland.

She has received awards from The National Career Development Association, National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, and American College Personnel Association. She recently received the 2016 Teachers College Columbia University Distinguished Alumni Award.

Reviews & Awards

This book is a timely contribution to the field…. Too Young to Be Old is a valuable book for a resource library at senior centers, gerontology studies, college courses on sociology and psychology of aging, practitioners, and as a self-help guide.

Accessible and upbeat guide that builds on the concepts Professor Schlossberg first pioneered in her popular books Retire Smart, Retire Happy, and Revitalizing Retirement with an engaging take on positive aging.
Midwest Book Review

Nancy Schlossberg is a prolific writer, especially on the topic of living well as we age. Her most recent book is a swift and satisfying read, full of wisdom and encouragement for all of us.
—Positive Aging Newsletter

Too Young to Be Old is an extremely accessible and conversational book, firmly grounded in relevant research. Dispelling the stereotype of aging as a time of narrowing options, Schlossberg helps readers view retirement and beyond as sets of choices and possibilities.
—Susan Fuhrman, PhD
President, Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, NY

Schlossberg has sautéed the psychology of aging into a delicious mixture of insights, advice, and case studies to help those who are coping with the challenges of aging. Drawing on her understanding of transitions, positive psychology, and the key roles that each individual's perceptions play in preparing for and responding to late-life changes, she gives us tools for increasing well-being across the lifespan.
—Michael A. Smyer, PhD
Professor of Psychology, Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA, and founder of Graying Green: Climate Action for an Aging World

Age denial and ageism are the great psychological challenge of our time. Prevention and cure come through active hope that is realistic yet positive. This book gives us that hope.
—Harry R. Moody, PhD
Retired Vice President (Academic Affairs), AARP

In this upbeat guide, Schlossberg teaches readers how to embrace, understand, and negotiate the transitions of aging. I highly recommend it to all older adults looking to improve their lives.
—Ken Dychtwald, PhD
founder and CEO of Age Wave; author of A New Purpose: Redefining Money, Family, Work, Retirement, and Success