I wanted to highlight three websites that I keep going back to for information, advice, and wisdom. All give us information and ideas about how to live with more meaning and even happiness. They’re especially useful for folks in the second half of life who may find themselves more receptive these notions, but I’d recommend them to virtually any adult.
All of have excellent newsletters or e-mail bulletins that you can subscribe to for free.
First up is Next Avenue, a site hosted by public television staffers:
You’re aware that many years of life lie ahead of you and, very likely, you have a different set of expectations for these “bonus years” than you had for earlier adulthood. You sense that you can somehow apply your knowledge and experiences in a meaningful way. Yet you may not know exactly how to achieve this new vision or see all the many possibilities available to you as you navigate the physical, health, work, and financial shifts that inevitably accompany this phase.
Enter Next Avenue. We’re a group of public television people and journalists who, for the most part, are experiencing the very same things you are. Like you, we see both challenges and opportunities and we recognize that what we could all use right about now is an abundance of reliable information that can help us figure out what’s, well, next.
Beyond its home page, Next Avenue has major sections on health & well-being, money & security, work & purpose, living & learning, and caregiving. I’ve highlighted it before on this blog, and I’m happy to do so again. For me it has become a “go-to” site.
The second site is Greater Good, hosted by the Greater Good Science Center at University of California, Berkeley. The Center:
is unique in its commitment to both science and practice: not only do we sponsor groundbreaking scientific research into social and emotional well-being, we help people apply this research to their personal and professional lives. Since 2001, we have been at the fore of a new scientific movement to explore the roots of happy and compassionate individuals, strong social bonds, and altruistic behavior—the science of a meaningful life. And we have been without peer in our award-winning efforts to translate and disseminate this science to the public.
On this site you’ll find pages devoted to family & couples, education, work & career, mind & body, and Big Ideas. It’s a great example of how academic researchers can translate their findings and insights that inform all of us on how to live better lives.
Finally, Brain Pickings is the devoted and intellectually eclectic work of Maria Popova, who describes the site this way:
Brain Pickings is my one-woman labor of love — a subjective lens on what matters in the world and why. Mostly, it’s a record of my own becoming as a person — intellectually, creatively, spiritually — and an inquiry into how to live and what it means to lead a good life.
…The core ethos behind Brain Pickings is that creativity is a combinatorial force: it’s our ability to tap into our mental pool of resources — knowledge, insight, information, inspiration, and all the fragments populating our minds — that we’ve accumulated over the years just by being present and alive and awake to the world, and to combine them in extraordinary new ways. In order for us to truly create and contribute to the world, we have to be able to connect countless dots, to cross-pollinate ideas from a wealth of disciplines, to combine and recombine these pieces and build new ideas.
The site is “full of pieces spanning art, science, psychology, design, philosophy, history, politics, anthropology, and more; pieces that enrich our mental pool of resources and empower combinatorial ideas that are stronger, smarter, richer, deeper and more impactful.”
Note: This article is a slightly edited version of a piece posted several days ago on my professional blog, Minding the Workplace.