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Aging in a meaningful way
Andrew G. Marshall: Marital therapist
BY PETER BOWES | WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 16, 2022
What is it about life that makes it worth living? Sure, living a long time with good health and vitality is an aspirational goal, but do you know how to age in a meaningful way? In fact, what is it about living that gives it value and substance? Are we able to mine the wisdom of our years to enhance life’s experiences as we grow older? Andrew G. Marshall is marital therapist, a prolific author of books and host of the podcast, The Meaningful Life. In this LLAMA podcast conversation, Andrew, who is based in Berlin, discusses his longtime search for answers to these vexing questions.
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“Unless you know how to age in a meaningful way, if you’re trying to still be, a phrase I particularly hate, the young old, you’re not actually mining the wisdom of what it actually means to be old.”Andrew Marshall
In this episode, topics we cover include:
- What living a meaningful life actually means.
- The ensuring significance of Victor Frankl’s observations about meaning in life
- Why aspiring to have the corner office isn’t everything
- What are my values and who am I?
- Growing up with a rebellious attitude
- The ‘middle passage’ of growing old, in a U-shaped life
- Embracing new challenges over 60
- Enjoying a phase of life where climbing the greasy poll no longer matters
- Mining regrets and forging a new path in later life
- Learning from death and the loss of a loved one.
- A new perspective on life, post-pandemic.
- Breathing and getting out of your brain.
DoNotAge.org is offering listeners to LLAMA a 10% discount on its range of products – NAD boosters, Sirtuin activators, senolytics and more.Use the code LLAMA at checkout. Any health queries can be answered by emailing the team at email@example.com.
Affiliation disclosure: This podcast receives a small commission when you use the code LLAMA for purchases at DoNotAge.org – it helps to cover production costs and ensures that our interviews remain free for all to listen.
This interview with Andrew G. Marshall was recorded on November 24, 2021 and transcribed using Sonix AI. Please check against audio recording for absolute accuracy.
Peter Bowes: [00:00:21] Hello again and welcome to the Live Long and Master Aging podcast. I’m Peter Bowes. This is where we explore the science and stories behind human longevity. Now, during these interviews, whether they be with scientists, doctors, entrepreneurs or, let’s face it, ordinary people like you and I with a keen interest in maximizing our health span, living life to the full with optimum health for as long as possible. Whoever it is, I’m always keen to know why does it matter? What’s the point of striving to live a long, healthy life? The answer may seem obvious, the alternative doesn’t sound very thrilling. Many people cite the opportunity to enjoy life with their children, grandchildren for as long as possible. For others, it’s the opportunity to keep working, sharing their lifetime wisdom for the benefit of others. Whatever the thinking, there is one word that permeates everything and that is life. Or perhaps the phrase meaningful life. But what is it about living that makes it meaningful? Our guest today from Berlin is Andrew G. Marshall. Andrew is a marital therapist, a prolific author of books, including his best known work. I Love You, but I’m not in Love with You. Think about that for a second. And another book. It’s not a midlife crisis. It’s an opportunity. How to be 40 or 50 something without Going off the Rails. And Andrew’s podcast is called The Meaningful Life. Andrew, welcome to our podcast! Live Long and Master Aging.
Andrew Marshall: [00:01:56] It’s a great privilege to be here.
Peter Bowes: [00:01:58] Really good to meet you. Let’s go straight to the heart of the matter. What is a meaningful life?
Andrew Marshall: [00:02:04] Well, I think that’s something that depends very much on person to person. So one of the ideas of my podcast, the meaningful life, is to sort of crowdsource this idea because there is not one answer. The answer isn’t 42. It’s going to be different for each individual person and actually understanding that it’s different for each individual person is actually the very heart of the matter. So I have lots of ideas. My guests have lots of ideas, but what we’re trying to do is we’re trying to prompt people to think what makes my life meaningful. It’s sort of almost the most important question you can ask yourself. I’ve got a couple of other key questions as well, but that’s the heart of it. And if you have the answer or an answer because it’s probably going to change as time goes by, I think you’re going to have a much more fulfilling life. And I think you’re going to lead a much more meaningful life because I don’t know if you’re aware of Victor Frankl, do you know about him?
Peter Bowes: [00:03:12] Yes.
Andrew Marshall: [00:03:14] Who survived the Holocaust and his famous phrase, which sort of sums up in many ways his whole philosophy and was one of the inspirations for writing my book. It’s not a midlife crisis, it’s an opportunity, and launching the podcast is this: those who have a why to live can bear with almost any how. So, even if life is actually pretty ropey? If you have a Why?, you can actually cope with it much better and get much more out of it than if it’s just, you know, to be happy or to have a good time because those things are transitory. And, you know, they’re not awful lot of happiness to be found in illness or a worldwide pandemic.
Peter Bowes: [00:04:04] It’s always fascinating to me. Obviously, I do a lot of interviews on a similar theme and ask similar questions. Viktor Frankl and his thoughts and his thinking come up frequently. He was clearly onto something, I think very significant.
Andrew Marshall: [00:04:18] Yeah. And he was sort of doing his research in the sort of the bleakest of situations. He took his his manuscript hidden in his coat into Auschwitz and wanting to save it was his what made his life meaningful and actually conducting this experiment on, you know, what happens when your life became meaningless? And could you find meaning in the worst of circumstances when you had the least control possible is the most extraordinary set of information? And so. I think it’s an inspiration for everybody, I have an episode on my podcast, which sort of takes his ideas and sort of updates them for today as well, because this is a these great thinkers are well worth listening to, even if they’re no longer with us.
Peter Bowes: [00:05:17] Yeah, I totally agree. Andrew. Your accent is is clearly familiar to me. Let’s talk a little bit about your background, where you grew up, where you went to school, and perhaps what happened in your life to make you interested in this subject now?
Andrew Marshall: [00:05:31] Hmm. I think what made me interested in this subject is two things. Growing up, I was given the typical education of an upper middle class Englishman, which is that you had to achieve. You had to hopefully go to a good university, get a good job and preferably get the corner office. And that’s what sort of most people do in the first half of their life. You know, the the cultural cultural equivalent of that. We sort of do what other people think is right, which makes a good life, you know, because nobody actually tells us how to live. We just sort of copy the big people, and we imagine if we get married, we get a good job and, you know, do the right thing. We’re going to feel happy and contented. And that’s our task really in the first half of life is to sort of try that out. But in the second half of life, then we have to think what makes my life meaningful? You know, what are my values? This is another really important question, what are my values as opposed to my parents’ values or my school’s values or the greater society’s values? Or you know what the person, what Uncle Tom Kablooey thinks, or the man on the Clapham omnibus? It really doesn’t matter. You know, I’m now 62, and I have clients of a similar age that are sometimes still living the life that their parents wanted, even though they’ve been dead for the last 20 years. And that’s really rather sad. I mean, personally, what made me really start thinking about this was when I was 37 and my partner died, and there’s nothing actually more likely to make you stop and think what makes a meaningful life when you see somebody that you love who in this case was only 42 come to the end of their life? And that’s really started me thinking. And, you know, actually the job I had and you know, what kind of house and car I drove was of absolutely no importance whatsoever.
Peter Bowes: [00:07:53] And it is interesting, isn’t it, that it is often life and death? And the first time in life that we experience those things, the inevitability of life. And often it is simply children and parents and grandparents. So children observing their parents or their grandparents moving into the next stage of life and ultimately death. That is what gets younger people. I’m saying younger, maybe 30s or 40s, beginning to think about what it means to grow older.
Andrew Marshall: [00:08:21] And it’s not just growing older, it’s how can you be a good elder because we have a crisis in our society because the elders are in crisis, unless you know how to age in a meaningful way. If you’re trying to still be, a phrase, I particularly hate, the young old. You’re not actually mining the wisdom of what it actually means to be old because we’re living in this most extraordinary age. Because generally, from 60, if you reach 65, the likelihood is you’re going to reach 85 in a way that’s healthy and is full of energy. And what are you going to do with this time? You know, you need to mine the wisdom of what it means to be this age because you can then actually be an inspiration for the next generation coming along. You can actually help them with these big questions. You know, I’ve given you two of them what makes my life meaningful? What are my values? And the third one is, who am I? They’re not difficult. They’re not easy questions, so no wonder you need 20 years to answer them. But these are incredibly important questions and we are the sort of. The first and second generation that have really had the luxury to be able to explore these things and do something meaningful and to become good elders. But if we’re just trying to cover up our bald spot with a fast car, then we’re not actually going to we’re not going to have very much meaning really in our lives. We’re not going to have anything very much to pass on to the next generation.
Peter Bowes: [00:10:16] So you grew up in England, you’re now in Berlin, as I mentioned. Was there anything in particular about your childhood? Do you think and the way that you were brought up that has influenced the kind of train of thought that you’ve just described?
Andrew Marshall: [00:10:32] Oh, that’s a difficult question. I think the thing that made me the most different was that I think I was a little bit of a rebel from the very beginning. I used to question things I remember. And this was incredibly unpopular on the school playing field, asking for the ball in football and just kicking it off the off the pitch, as if to say, you know, this is a silly game. You know, why are we running around after this ball? And you know, I was completely and utterly slapped down by that. But it’s that sort of thinking in a slightly different way. My family believed that having feelings and talking about them actually was rather dangerous. In fact, they probably made everything worse. And deep down inside, I had lots of feelings, so I believe that feelings were important. In fact, they were as important as thoughts. So I think that made me stand out from the rest of my cohort. And you sort of follow that that line. I read lots of books on the subject of middle age. I don’t know if you know Dr James Hollis, who’s a Jungian analyst, you’ll find a great addition about resilience on my podcast. He also wrote an excellent book called The Middle Passage, and I think that’s really important this idea of the Middle Passage for growing old. So the Middle Passage is the section between our provisional adulthood. Think of it a bit like the U-shaped life. So childhood is brilliant. In fact, older age is brilliant. People get happier. The more over 60 they get, the happier they get in all the research. It’s the bit in the middle, the 30s and the 20s, 30s and 40s where we’re and possibly 50s, where we’re having to do all the heavy lifting. And it’s this middle passage where we have to answer those three questions. Now, if you answer, who am I, what makes my life meaningful and what are my values? You’re going to get the boost that comes from all of that and the the benefits of aging. If you don’t answer those questions, you just think, you know, I won’t be fooled again. Remember that song from the WHO? That’s the classic song. You know, I was told that if I got the corner office, my life would be wonderful. And you get to the corner office and the view is exactly the same as everywhere else. And you sort of think I won’t get fooled again. You sort of shut down. You become cynical, bitter and twisted. You become a grumpy old man rather than an elder, or you become a grumpy old woman rather than an elder. And that’s the important question. You know, am I going to shut down and I’m going to follow the herd? Or am I going to be myself? Am I going to listen to myself? Or am I just going to be safe? Am I just going to be secure? Or am I going to risk asking those questions? And there are lots more other questions to ask yourself. But you know, at midlife, those are the most important questions to ask yourself what makes my life meaningful?
Peter Bowes: [00:14:07] You mentioned being 62. You mentioned people often in general terms are happier once they’re over 60 or thereabouts. I’m curious about your mindset as you approached being 60 and then surpassing 60 and moving into that decade, how did you approach it? I know a lot of people approach that decade with dread because it’s it’s different to approaching 50 because you’re still working and you’re still in. By and large, involved in life as we know it. But 60s is that decade of retirement for a lot of people, and that’s what so many people dread.
Andrew Marshall: [00:14:43] Well, no, I started a podcast, for example, you know, I thought, actually, I want to know what makes life meaningful, so you know, I will start a podcast and I will interview all the people I’ve always wanted to meet. I mean, how wonderful is that this idea that suddenly the horizons are closing down? No. If you want, if you want them to open up, you’ve just got to, you know, decide what it is you really want to do. And often and this is one of the sort of similarities between this age and the previous times is you’ve sort of got to look back at the things that you really enjoyed, the things that possibly you put to one side because you were rushing after the corner office. So let’s give you a personal example. Like you, in the past, I used to work in radio. I used to interview people. I used to have a daily chat program. But in this world, you get promoted. If you do it well, you get promoted further and further up. And you know, I got promoted past the point that I stopped doing radio programs. I became a manager and I gave up childish things for want of a better world.
Peter Bowes: [00:16:06] Do you regret that promotion?
Andrew Marshall: [00:16:07] Well, at the time, it seemed like a really good idea because, you know, I became the program controller instead of just my own program. I was in charge of everybody’s program. So, you know, there was a certain creativity about about that. But I just got moved further and further away and it gets harder to go backwards. But now I don’t have to worry so much about paying the bills. I don’t have to worry about, you know, climbing the zgreasy pole. I just do what is right for me. And yeah, I had some great times, but actually, and this is another thought for leading a meaningful life. What is the most beautiful moment is this moment now that I’m talking to you, I’m appearing on your podcast. That is absolutely wonderful to to suddenly in this weird place, meet somebody who’s sort of almost led a parallel life. How wonderful. And in a way, we’ve both arrived at exactly the same place. You know how interesting? So what could be better than that? So how did I approach turning 60? I threw a big party. I can’t recommend it too highly. I think you should always celebrate the zeros. You should tell people how old you are. I think that this terrible idea, my parents refused to tell me how old they were, so it was a great secret, which is just sort of really rather ludicrous. I think we should reclaim the word old in the same way that, you know, gay people have reclaimed the word queer and various other minorities have reclaimed some of the slurs that belong to that have been thrown at them. Some women of some some women would reclaim the word bitch, for example. So, you know, I think there’s nothing wrong with being old. I’m proud of being old.
Peter Bowes: [00:18:12] I’m delighted to hear it. And you know what you say I really agree with. And I use the the word regret in my last question to you. Did you regret a certain decision you made in your life or a sequence of events? And I always kind of pinch myself when I talk about regrets. Frank Sinatra sang about regrets,”I’ve had a few, too few to mention,” but regrets to me can always be turned into a positive when you’re looking to the rest of your life.
Andrew Marshall: [00:18:40] I think, you know, there are some regrets. There are choices that I made that if I went back, I possibly wouldn’t do the same thing again that, you know, I. But they were nearly made, nearly always made out of fear. And, you know, maybe it’s encouraged me to be a bit braver and sometimes that bravery is involved getting my kneecaps knocked off. But I think if we don’t take the risks, we don’t have the regrets. You know, there’s actually nothing wrong with regrets.
Peter Bowes: [00:19:11] I think maybe we can differentiate. We can learn from mistakes. Sometimes regrets for me just surround a decision. You might have gone in one direction. You might have gone in another direction and it leaves you lingering with a big what if I’d done that instead of that in my life? And what I tend to think is, well, I’m still alive, I’m still living. I can do things now that I maybe couldn’t or didn’t do when I was 20 or 30 years younger. In other words, see it as a positive to moving forward.
Andrew Marshall: [00:19:44] I think that we have to, you know, actually mine those regrets a little bit, you know, if you do have a regret, what’s it about? What how could you turn that into something that you could do today? Because this sort of idea that there are two paths and we’ve we’ve missed out on a whole path actually stops us being where we are today. It stops us actually focusing on the joy of the fact that two twins, almost from opposite parts from the same place, ended up in opposite halves of the world sort of doing the same thing. We we sort of we’re we’re not going to enjoy this moment quite so much if we’re too focused on what didn’t happen. Sometimes the narrow path is a much more fruitful path. It’s much better to mine the moment that we’re in the depth of it, rather than to be skirting off thinking of 300 other paths not taken.
Peter Bowes: [00:20:49] I guess what I’m getting at is, let’s say, just to use my example. I started as a scientist. I was pursuing biology as a career and then became captivated by radio and journalism and television eventually. And that became the bulk of my career, and there was always a tinge of regret that I hadn’t pursued the other career. But now, decades on, I find myself, especially with this podcast using some of that knowledge and some new knowledge in this sphere of science and biology to actually do this kind of work and talk to scientists and to really explore something that really fascinates me and that is the science of of human longevity. It’s something that didn’t happen in the past, but looking to the future, it is actually something I’m learning about now and actually want to pursue. And it’s all part of that ethos of never stopping, never giving up on a situation, always moving forward with something new to learn and to look forward to.
Andrew Marshall: [00:21:45] But you have actually mined that regret. You’ve actually said science is something that I regret, but you can actually mine it today
Peter Bowes: [00:21:56] Exactly.
Andrew Marshall: [00:21:57] As you’ve just said you can. You can bring it into today. You can study some form of science or one particular area. You could write a book on it. You could become the world’s specialist on one particular element of it. This, you’ve got the time to do it. You can you can seize the opportunity.
Peter Bowes: [00:22:16] And that’s what I find quite exciting about aging. And I always like to use the phrase growing old as opposed to getting old. Getting old is something people say, Oh, I’m getting old. That sort of acknowledgment of a few aching limbs or whatever and not particularly looking at aging in a positive sense. That is what growing old to me is about. And if you want to describe it as mining the regrets but using aging as an opportunity and building on the the wisdom that you have perhaps not making some mistakes again, again, to move forward in life and to do new things. And that’s what positive aging is, is all about to me. And that’s and that’s the purpose in life. And I think purpose is a very important word as we’re talking about this.
Andrew Marshall: [00:23:00] But actually staying in the moment now rather than trying to look forward into the future. Because I remember I had a client when I was probably in my mid-50s who came with a crisis just after his 60th birthday. He said I’ve only got 20 summers left, if I’m lucky. And that was actually making him really miserable. And when we actually looked deeply into this, he felt that he was still on the runway of life, sort of taking off, trying to get to the point where he could land, where he really wanted to do. He had a brilliant career, but the career was not actually fulfilling. He hadn’t answered those questions. What makes my life meaningful? Who am I and what are my values? And if you didn’t answer, try and answer those in 40 something, you most definitely have to answer them at 60 something. And once he actually began to do that and actually enjoy the summer that we were having, rather than actually thinking about the next 19 summers, his life opened up in a way that was really blissful.
Peter Bowes: [00:24:17] But that’s an example, isn’t it, of how we view the glass, whether it’s half-full? A lot of people would think, great, wow. I’ve reached this age and I’ve got 20 summers or at least 20 summers to go, and that would fill him with joy and excitement. I suppose the question is why we what happens in our lives to make us view that glass in different ways.
Andrew Marshall: [00:24:37] I think it depends. I think this is an idea from Einstein. Do you see a world of abundance? Or do you see a world of scarcity and our culture is suggesting that we live in a world of scarcity that, you know, if your podcast is successful, then you’re stealing listeners from me? And so there’s a just a shortage of these people who are going to listen and we’ve got to grab hold of them and we can’t possibly talk to each other. Or you can live in a world of abundance where you think that there are many opportunities. And I think that is really important. Do you see abundance or do you see scarcity? And quite a lot of that it’s going to have to do with the way you were brought up, you know, did your parents believe in scarcity or abundance? You know, do you have to hold your money close because it’s going to disappear? Or is there always going to be money around? I think it’s quite useful to look through your family tree. I actually think look at the generations and see what their attitudes were and how that has actually impacted you.
Peter Bowes: [00:25:51] Well, I hope there’s space in this world for both of our podcasts. I particularly enjoy yours The Meaningful Life. The conversations are really compelling, and I would certainly recommend it to anyone, even my listeners, they can go and listen to yours and then listen to mine. I think it’s a great listen. I’m curious to know what you have learned. I’ve learned a tremendous amount from listening to the guests that I’ve had. What have you learned from your guests that perhaps you just didn’t realize or hadn’t given any thought to in this sphere of growing old and positivity and meaning?
Andrew Marshall: [00:26:25] Okay, here’s one which is sort of about there’s a famous phrase, you know, one of the famous phrase, but it’s something we also we can’t change the past thinking about my partner’s death until I met Kathryn Mannix. Do you know Kathryn Mannix? She’s a.
Peter Bowes: [00:26:44] I don’t.
Andrew Marshall: [00:26:45] Definitely somebody to find to read her book. It’s called with the end in mind. It’s about her life as a palliative care doctor and what she learned helping people make the transition from this world to the next world and actually talking and learning about death. The things that I actually thought that my partner had a bad death. What I thought was his lungs were filling up with the cytes and he was drowning in his own body fluid, which is a terrible image. And from her, I discovered that actually because he was in a coma, he couldn’t clear his throat from saliva. You know, most of us will get something stuck in the back of our throat, and we can just get rid of it because we have the ability to either swallow or to cough it up. But if you’re in a coma, you can’t. And so the water is staying there or the saliva or the liquid is staying there in the back of your throat. And as you breathe, it’s going over making a burbling noise. And what I thought was drowning was just a bit of saliva stuck in the back of his throat. So I’m now able to go back to that story. That actually was a very negative story and tell it in a different kind of way by mining it. What I can also do is the nurse that sat with me at that bedside is a friend of mine. Now, 25 years later, she lives in Germany because my partner died in Germany, and now my German is good enough to speak much more to her and we can have a much deeper conversation. But actually, I can see this thing is not just the the death of my partner, but the fact that I took a friendship out of that place that she and her husband came to have dinner with us about two weeks ago. So I can go back to that story. I can actually tell it to myself in a different kind of way because of that extra knowledge. So that’s something that I learned from my podcast, just how powerful it is to go back and retell the same story in a different kind of way with the new knowledge that I have today and the extra perspective I have today, 25 years later. That’s one thing I’ve learned. Another thing I’ve learned, which I think is really important, which I sort of knew beforehand, is about the shadow. Now, do you know what I mean by shadow?
Peter Bowes: [00:29:32] Not entirely.Tell me.
Andrew Marshall: [00:29:34] It’s a Jungian idea that we have the things that we will not accept. So, you know, we’re both intelligent, thoughtful people. The bit of ourselves that we put into our shadow is our stupidity and our thoughtlessness, you know, we don’t want to acknowledge those bits and actually taking out and admitting the stuff that’s in our shadow that, you know, within aging there is actually closing down as well as opening up. But unless you actually acknowledge the closing down, you’re not actually seeing the closing down in yourself because you’re not acknowledging it, you’re probably projecting it onto other people and by projecting it onto other people. I mean, you know, oh, bill, who lives down the road? Well, you know, he never does anything. And so you can actually distance yourself even further from the closing down. But if you can actually mine it and the phrase I got from Lisa Marchiano, who’s a Jungian analyst who tells a lot of stories, this one’s about motherhood, is that the witches? You know, there’s always a witch in the who are always representing the shadow and the dark side in in myths and fairy tales. They nearly always have gold. So, you know, when Hansel and Gretel throw the wicked witch into the pot, they get gold from her. So, you know, what is the gold that the witches have? What is the gold in the shadow? That’s another thing that I’ve sort of learned and thought a lot about. So often I will take ideas that come out of the podcast that my guests tell me, and I will sort of think about them, contemplate them for a couple of weeks afterwards. I mean, not every one of them gives me stuff, but sometimes it’s actually for my clients. So you know that I will sort of. This is really weird. I will arrange a podcast on codependency. I have one on codependency, and then suddenly I start getting all these clients that have actually got addiction and codependency issues. And it’s sort of weird that the topics that I choose somehow brings clients, not because they’ve heard the podcast. They’re just, you know, I’m the next therapist on the block, you know, to to hire, you know, a bit like taxies off the rank. But yet they’re bringing issues that I’ve been talking about on my podcast. So, you know, that is really helpful and useful. So it’s like continuous personal development
Peter Bowes: [00:32:15] And has the experience that we’ve all shared over the last two years the COVID pandemic. Has that changed your perspective on living and a meaningful life and what it is just to be alive?
Andrew Marshall: [00:32:31] Most definitely. I decided at the very beginning of the pandemic, if you can’t go out, I was going to go in and for the first 24 days, I mined a image from my unconscious and then contemplated it during the day. Would you like me to explain to your listeners how to do this?
Peter Bowes: [00:32:53] Please do.
Andrew Marshall: [00:32:54] So. You want to do some nice deep breaths just to sort of get you out of your brain a little bit. So you’d sort of maybe do deep breath in for a count of four? Hold for the count of four. And they’ll let it out for the count of six. And actually breathing out for longer than you breathe in puts you into a very relaxed sort of kind of place. Once you’ve done this for maybe 20 times, you sort of open your eyes as sort of widely as you can and you try and see how big you can actually make your field of vision. How high up what can you see without moving your head? That’s the highest point. What can you see at the lowest point, the right and the left? So you’re sort of opening your eyes as much as possible and then you close your eyes and you let an image come into your head. And the most important thing to do is not to question it. The very first day I did it, I got a green cabbage and I thought, My gosh, you know, how does it work to hear that a green cabbage? But it’s actually as I as I. And then you stay with that image and you see what it says to you. And finally, I thought about the, Do you remember the Lewis Carroll where the carpenter and the walrus and they speak of many things of cabbages and kings?
Peter Bowes: [00:34:32] Yes. Yeah.
Andrew Marshall: [00:34:33] In a sense, this was everything. It was a cabbage, but it was everything. And so over the sort of 20 24 days I thought of all these images that came from my unconscious, from a deeper sense of myself rather than my conscious brain. I put together and sort of contemplated all of those images, and that was that sort of piece, and that stillness gave me a chance to go inside rather than distracting myself by rushing around the world. So. And out of, in fact, this that 24 days came my podcast, I started thinking about a whole load of things from the past and how I got into radio, what I wanted to do, and I finally thought, I’m going to start my podcast and and once again, from that more deeper inner place that those images came from.
Andrew Marshall: [00:35:41] And whatever you do, don’t look them up on the on the internet. Don’t look and see what does a horse mean? Because the minute you look it up and you find it means I don’t know freedom, it actually dies the image. It’s actually how you see a horse. What a horse means to you. Let it stay with you rather than, you know what the horses mean in dreams, sort of kind of idea. So I found that the the COVID ongoing nightmare, you have to focus on this moment again. You have to focus on those small pleasures, mining them deeper, the narrow path again and deepening that narrow path and deepening the moment and living in what I would say the eternal now, rather than the sort of momentary now between all those the past and the future. We hardly actually in that now. But if we do deepen it, we can be in an eternal now and that eternal now is just as deep at eighteen as thirty eight and fifty eight and seventy eight. But I think probably you have to be a bit older to really start to think about the whole idea of that eternal now rather than that transitory now, like on a tightrope, which is how we work most of the time.
Peter Bowes: [00:37:12] Andrew, that’s a really inspiring and I’ve really enjoyed this conversation. We’ve we’ve delved into a number of areas that frankly, I hadn’t thought about before, and I think that’s always a positive. Thank you so much for your time.
Andrew Marshall: [00:37:24] And it’s been a great pleasure to be on your podcast and may it go from strength to strength.
Peter Bowes: [00:37:29] Thank you so much. And if you’d like to read more about Andrew’s work, check out his podcast. I’d thoroughly recommend it. I’ll put some details into the show notes of this episode. You’ll find a transcript of this conversation at the Live Long and Master Aging website. LLAMApodcast.com LLAMApodcast.com. This is a Healthspan Media roduction you’ve already found us, but a quick reminder we’re available at all of the major podcasting platforms, including Apple Podcasts and Spotify, where we’re delighted if you could leave us a review. We’re also on Stitcher, Pandora, Audible, to name but a few. Wherever you find us take care and thanks so much for listening.
The Live Long and Master Aging podcast, a HealthSpan Media LLC production, shares ideas but does not offer medical advice. If you have health concerns of any kind, or you are considering adopting a new diet or exercise regime, you should consult your doctor.