Barbara Waxman MS, MPA, PCC
Barbara Waxman is the leading authority on Middlescence and a passionate advocate for aging, wisdom, and thriving in midlife. Her mission is to shift cultural norms around aging by establishing Middlescence as a unique life stage. Barbara is the founder of Odyssey Group Coaching LLC which includes her one-of-a-kind coaching model, Entrepreneurship Turned Inward©, and proprietary content such as the Five Essential Elements© to help middlescents thrive personally and professionally. She is one of the only Gerontologist-coaches in the United States. Her breakthrough coaching has inspired hundreds of individuals and senior leaders with compassion, honesty, and a light heart while incorporating cutting edge research and methodologies.
Barbara is the author of two books examining aging, including, most recently, The Middlescence Manifesto: Igniting the Passion of Midlife. She is an Advisory Council Member for the Stanford Center on Longevity, member of the Executive Board of Advisors for How Women Lead, and a faculty member at Modern Elder Academy. Her work has been featured in multiple media outlets, including CBS This Morning, Marin Magazine, and Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global. A Wexner Heritage Foundation Fellow, Barbara holds master’s degrees in both Public Administration and Gerontology from the University of Southern California, and coaching certifications from the International Coach Federation and The Hudson Institute.
An inveterate globetrotter, she has ‘repotted’ in Italy and recently spent time on a ‘leadership repotting’ journey in India. Her community involvement includes work with ExtraFood.org and Beyond Differences. Barbara is a lifelong learner, hiker, yogi, sometime chef, and loves stepping just outside of her comfort zone. Originally from New York, Barbara lives in the San Francisco Bay area with her husband, Scott, and is thankful to have her adult children not too far away.
Barbara has a terrific tool box and is very results driven, thoughtful and organized. She helps me see different ways of viewing a situation which are transformational.
Barbara Waxman's empathetic and practical approach to inspiring people to embrace midlife is a marvel to watch.
Barbara's frank expertise has been so useful in naming my experiences, providing perspective, and framing the challenges and opportunities intrinsic in this stage of my work and life.
She helped me think clearly about my interests; allowed me to find my own process for decision making; and gave me a host of ideas I still use on a daily basis. Barbara is wise, thoughtful, supportive and-- in a good way-- tough. I recommend her highly.
Working with Barbara as an executive business coach was life-changing. She guided me through my life and business priorities, helping me define my goals and creating parameters so that I could easily implement and achieve them.
Barbara's program that I attended was a 10 – It was successful, hit the mark, and resonated with all those attending. It got all of us thinking and talking. And the event challenged us to keep our organization vibrant and thriving.
Speaking & Media
“I loved Barbara’s presence at the event: powerfully soft and approachable, grounded and warm, wise and on her “edge.” She was generous, beautiful, and excitingly real and alive!”
Inspiring audiences with passion, intelligence, and humor towards clarity, commitment, and action.
Keynote and Topics
Middlescence: Midlife and Better on Your Terms
A life stage created by longevity patterns of the 21st century.
Far too often, stereotypes become ageist arrows we point at ourselves. Most people don’t understand that we continue to develop and grow as adults. Once we have the tools to harness our energy, creativity, and wisdom, we can begin to forge a vibrant, exciting path forward.
The Five Essential Elements© to Thrive in Midlife and Better
Why do some people seem to thrive in midlife, while others wither?
Contrary to popular belief, your most valuable currency is not money or time–it is energy. Enhance your energy and you will have increased your focus, emotional equanimity, creativity, and ability to engage with people and causes you care about.
Repotting: Prune the limits of what is familiar and create growth.
Despite our best efforts, why do we sometimes find ourselves stuck in the rut of routine, rituals, and familiarity?
When we clear things out, we can make room for what matters. We create “intentional space” for our passion and purpose. If we don’t control what fills that space, something or someone else will —maybe something more draining and stressful than what we’ve cleared out.