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Learning, earning and yearning


Learn, Earn and Yearn


I have heard sociologists describe the modern human life  cycle as having three phases: The “learning” phase (roughly age 1-30), the “earning” phase (age 30-60), followed by a third phase of growth, I will refer to as the “yearning” phase.

The first two phases are pretty self-explanatory, and obviously the third varies from individual to individual and it can occur at any time after retirement from one’s primary occupation (the one that fueled the “Earning” phase!). Why  yearning?

I have found that people in the last third of their lives, often use the period for searching and discovering what fuels the final chapters. It is a period of searching - for emotional stability, for enduring, nurturing love, for connection with friends, family and the universe, yearning for spiritual answers, yearning for heath and longevity, yearning for relevance, hoping to make a mark, maybe to leave the world a better place than you found it. Some of the greatest relationships, works of art, pieces of music, impactful novels, scientific discoveries, happen when the creators of these miracles are greater than 60 years of age.

There is a corollary to the “3 phases of life” rule. The stages may blend into each other, blurring the boundaries.  The learning may, and should, extend well beyond the first third, and the earning may extend beyond the second phase, and the third phase may include earning and learning, as well as yearning.

The healthier among us do not restrict ourselves to the three phases. There is no law that says one must. If one remains healthy, there is absolutely no reason why learning, earning and yearning cannot be present during all phases of life. In fact, our lives will be much more joyful if they are!!

Let’s make that a goal. Never stop learning. If possible, start producing earlier and continue producing and earning longer, but for heaven’s sake, never stop yearning, and begin yearning as soon as possible, preferably in childhood!

I wish you good health!


Dr. John Monaco

MONACO Wellness

(813) 541-6440

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