Book Review ~ Becoming a Sage: Discovering Life’s Lessons, One Story at a Time Paperback – February 16, 2016 by Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse

Becoming A Sage: Discovering Life’s Lessons,
One Story at a Time by Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse

The art of becoming a sage mixes personal life experience with learning from ancient and historical people who have gathered their own wisdom. Sages know that they stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before.

In Becoming a Sage, international bestselling author and master storyteller Wegscheider-Cruse encourages readers to find their own personal path through a series of short stories, lessons learned and prudent quotes that validate each experience. Her stories span deep lows and soaring highs―a lifelong journey of lessons learned and a celebration of living with those lessons. Each tale will bring solace, comfort, and joy to readers, and inspire and teach them how to record their own stories. It will bring readers through guilt, fear, and forgiveness to reach personal transformation.

Wegscheider-Cruse knows that it’s not always easy to tell our stories; they can be scary or feel too private. But, as we grow older, we find courage and confidence by deciding to become “a teller of the truth.” Our sharing is the legacy that we leave to family and friends; Becoming a Sage is the remarkable legacy Wegscheider-Cruse leaves to us all.

If you hate knowledge, then close your eyes to this wisdom

“Courageous, transparent, and insightful. Here is a memoir of a different and delightful sort.  From an early onset storyteller through challenges, successes, and failures, Sharon emerges as an elder who is aging consciously and positively—an authentic sage. Reading Sharon’s memoir is like sitting with her, sipping tea, and being in the presence of incarnate wisdom  and inspiration.”
 –Jack Williamson, chaplain, Colonel, USAF (Ret), co-facilitator, Boulder, Colorado, chapter of Sage-ing International

The force is with Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse in her latest book Becoming A Sage: Discovering Life’s Lessons, One Story at a Time (HCI Books — $15.95). As a framework for gaining wisdom, Wegscheider-Cruse reveals the secret elements that give power to becoming a “human ‘being’ rather than a human ‘doing’.”

“Sages are powerful and wise…Sages take their earned wisdom and manifest it in their outer worlds…”

Confined into a two-part book, Wegscheider-Cruse generously offers lessons she has learned from her personal experiences from the early years to the golden years and ends with a finishing touch on the essentials of being a sage. This book is purposed to encourage everyone to reflect their own experiences, write them down and rather than ignoring them, share them over and over again. Becoming A Sage is a blueprint for the world to share their experiences. “When we have meetings of sages, imagine the wisdom shared!”

In part one, Wegscheider-Cruse shares short, clipped memories of her own life journey—”the deep lows, the soaring highs, the mundane and the magnificent.” In a cozy storytelling manner, she builds a relationship with her readers as if they were her very own child. Each short story is accompanied with the lesson she learned from that moment in her life.

“Transformation is the path to becoming a sage… We are never finished products; each time we add new learning to what we know, we become wiser…It is important that our stories do not wither and die with us.”

Part two briefly and concisely defines what a sage is and how to become one. With nurturing precision, each sentence in part two offers clarity on how an individual fulfills their life’s purpose. “Experience. Glean wisdom. Transform. Change… We transform as we fully experience life.”

Highlights from the book of Sage qualities include:

•    Think clearly. They are not overwhelmed or scattered.
•    Work out problems. They don’t stay stuck or confused.
•    Make decisions. They don’t procrastinate or waver.
•    Make things happen. They know someday is now.
•    Influence events. They are leaders rather that followers.
•    Win the respect of others. They don’t demand it.
•    Take charge of a situation. They don’t wait needlessly.
•    Have a vision and carry it out. They don’t accept current circumstances.
•    Be a force that unifies. They are creators, not destroyers.

The short stories, the lessons learned and the wisdom given in Becoming A Sage helps the reader to find tranquility as they examine their own life. This is a book to pay attention to for many generations to come, as wisdom is always timeless. This book will never leave the reader’s bookshelf, and just might have sitting next to it a collection of the reader’s own short stories and life lessons.

About the Author:

Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse is the founding Chairperson of the National Association of Children of Alcoholics, and founder of Onsite Workshops. She has brought hope and healing to millions as an author, counselor, trainer, consultant, and lecturer.  She has written 18 books translated into 13 languages, and broke ground and fostered a movement with her works, Another Chance: Hope and Health for the Alcoholic Family and Learning to Love Yourself. Sharon has traveled the world and developed programs in the United States, Europe, Australia, and Canada, and has appeared on The Phil Donahue Show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, and The Larry King Show, as well as in multiple media events.

To order directly from the publisher, contact: or (800) 441-5569
Becoming a Sage: Discovering Life’s Lessons, One Story at a Time
ISBN: 978-0-7573-1904-4

Buy it from Amazon

How To Be Your Own Economic Quarterback

You Need To Be The MVP Every Year, Financial Planner Says

After a lifetime of earning and saving, one might expect a comfortable and financially secure retirement, especially with a reliable financial advisor – right?

“Life is rarely that simple or black-and-white and, unfortunately, neither is the financial realm,” says Bryan S. Slovon, founder and CEO of Stuart Financial Group in Greenbelt, MD ().

“Perhaps the arithmetic of personal wealth should be much simpler, but like it or not, the rules of economics are riddled with fine print, unexpected or inadequately explained conditions, and loopholes.”

Further complicating matters are various professionals in the financial industry. Whether or not a professional means well, the fact remains that many are actually trying to sell products, he says.

“It’s worth reflecting on where your advisor is coming from,” Slovon says. “If they are not fully independent – as in not working for a large institution – their advice may be biased toward sales.”

Ultimately, each person must be his or her own best financial advocate. It may take a team of professionals in various fields to provide retirees with the good life, but individuals need to be their own most valuable player for their well-being. Slovon reviews basic measures to quarterback your life to financial wellness.

•  Listen to your doctor … so to speak. If you want to enjoy your golden years, good health is arguably the most important step – and it’s cost-effective.

“More specifically, doctors often tell patients that they can be of service only in as much as patients are doing their part for good health,” Slovon says. “A healthy diet, exercise, regular doctor’s visits, etc. are necessary. These things help provide good health. A similar kind of vigilance is required if you want to fully enjoy your money in retirement.”

•  Audit your current and future expenses; spell out your plan. If you don’t have a plan for your money then you’re just hoping for things to work out. You can do better than that, even though changes in your plan will likely occur at some point. The most basic aspect of a financial plan includes understanding your current budget, which could be compared to expenses expected in the future. The more technical side of things, such as how to save on taxes and make your money go further, would benefit from analysis by a truly independent financial advisor.

•  Focus on your taxes, and perhaps tax-favored investments. An important part of understanding your budget, and making it work better for you, is getting reliable professional analysis on your tax situation. You may be paying much more than is necessary. If you are expecting to retire in the near future, you may especially benefit from analysis of your tax budget.

Also, ask about investments that are tax-exempt and tax-deferrable. These include municipal bonds and certain money market funds, which provide a way to grow money that’s exempt from federal taxes.

“Most of us give our lives to our work and families our entire adult lives,” Slovon says. “If you’re nearing or in retirement, it’s time to focus on you. That means you’ll need at least some professional financial help. However, you are the best person to oversee your own economic fate.”

About Bryan Slovon

Bryan S. Slovon | Founder, CEOBryan Slovon is the founder and CEO of Stuart Financial Group, (, a boutique financial planning firm exclusively serving retirees and soon-to-be retirees in the District of Columbia metro area. He is a financial planner specializing in retirement planning and wealth preservation to a select group of clients. He currently holds his Series 65 license and is a Registered Financial Consultant as well as a Comprehensive Wealth Manager offering investment advisory services through Global Financial Private Capital, an SEC registered investment advisor.