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The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker

The Shift is a podcast that aims to tell the truth about being a woman post-40, created and hosted by writer and broadcaster Sam Baker

The Shift is a podcast that aims to tell the truth about being a woman post-40, created and hosted by writer and broadcaster, Sam Baker.Did you ever wonder why you stop hearing so many women's voices once they pass 40? T
Latest Episode5/24/2022

Amy Bloom on love, death, dignity – and tarot!

Season 8, Ep. 79
When you enter a relationship, you rarely consider how it might end. Let’s face it, how many of us would ever do anything if we crossed THAT bridge before we came to it.For today’s guest, writer and therapist Amy Bloom, THAT BRIDGE came all too soon when her husband Brian was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers and decided he would rather “die on his feet than live on his knees”. It was a decision that sent the couple on a journey from the East coast of America to Dignitas in Switzerland. Amy’s memoir In Love is the heartbreaking account of that journey. Butas the book’s title suggests this is also a tender, hopeful and passionate love letter to a man whose belief in human agency extended to his own death.CW: Just in case it doesn’t go without saying - in parts, this is not the easiest listen, Amy talks openly about the reality of an early dementia diagnosis, the right to die and living with her husband’s decision to do so.But ALSO the advantages of being older when you fall in love, why you should marry because of each other’s faults not in spite of them, why women often blow up their lives in their 50s plus her lifelong love of tarotYou can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including In Love by Amy Bloom, her book recommendation, Childhood, Youth, Dependency by Tove Ditlevsen, and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.
5/24/2022

Amy Bloom on love, death, dignity – and tarot!

Season 8, Ep. 79
When you enter a relationship, you rarely consider how it might end. Let’s face it, how many of us would ever do anything if we crossed THAT bridge before we came to it.For today’s guest, writer and therapist Amy Bloom, THAT BRIDGE came all too soon when her husband Brian was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers and decided he would rather “die on his feet than live on his knees”. It was a decision that sent the couple on a journey from the East coast of America to Dignitas in Switzerland. Amy’s memoir In Love is the heartbreaking account of that journey. Butas the book’s title suggests this is also a tender, hopeful and passionate love letter to a man whose belief in human agency extended to his own death.CW: Just in case it doesn’t go without saying - in parts, this is not the easiest listen, Amy talks openly about the reality of an early dementia diagnosis, the right to die and living with her husband’s decision to do so.But ALSO the advantages of being older when you fall in love, why you should marry because of each other’s faults not in spite of them, why women often blow up their lives in their 50s plus her lifelong love of tarotYou can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including In Love by Amy Bloom, her book recommendation, Childhood, Youth, Dependency by Tove Ditlevsen, and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.
5/17/2022

Minnie Driver on ageing, expectation and creased Brad Pitt!

Season 8, Ep. 77
My guest this week is one of the most enduring movie actresses of our (by which I mean my!) generation. Minnie Driver made her first film, Circle of Friends in 1995, and went on to follow that with a lead role in Stanley Tucci’s gorgeous ode to Italian food, Big Night, an Oscar nominated turn in Goodwill Hunting. And my personal favourite Grosse Point Blank.Now 52, with a 13yo son, Henry, and over fifty roles under her belt, Minnie is still “doing Hollywood” very much her own way. As well as two albums and a podcast (Minnie’s Questions), she’s now written a memoir, Managing Expectations, a book about how things not working out for her inevitably led to other things working out.Minnie joined me from her LA home to tell me why being called outspoken makes her want to punch walls, overcoming the curse of other people’s expectations (and her own!), why she always felt like a failure for not being married, how getting fired never feels any less unjust and embracing her vengeful streak! She also introduces me to the concept of is-ness, shares her big hair survival tips and has things to say about why Hollywood dudes can be creased, but women can’t!You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including Managing Expectations by Minnie Driver, Minnie's book recommendation Send Nudes by Saba Sams and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.
5/10/2022

Abi Morgan on embracing catastrophe and rebuilding just about everything in your 50s

Season 8, Ep. 76
Today’s guest is a woman I’ve admired for the longest time: stage and screenwriter Abi Morgan. Throughout her thirty year career Abi has written some of our most memorable drama: Shame, Sex Traffic, The Queen, Iron Lady, The Hour (for which she won an Emmy), Suffragette and, most recently, the BBCone hit, The Split. In her work, female characters took centre stage long before that became the fashionable thing to do.But now, Abi has been forced to take centre stage herself. Four years ago, she returned home one lunchtime to find her partner of 20 years, Jakob, collapsed on the bathroom floor. It was the start of a sequence of events that would upend their family forever. And it’s the subject of perhaps the most extraordinary memoir I have ever read - This is Not a Pity memoir. And it isn’t. It’s about love, trauma and ultimately - weirdly! - about hope.Abi joined me to talk candidly about the cataclysmic impact of Jake’s illness, the long - and ongoing - journey to rebuild their family and how, in the midst of all that, she coped with her own breast cancer diagnosis. She also told me about being a lone woman in a world of white men in leather jackets, budging up to make room at the table and why she’s done with being “user-friendly”.You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including This Is Not A Pity Memoir by Abi Morgan and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.
5/3/2022

Chitra Ramaswamy on memory, mothering & the "mid-life gift" of responsibility

Season 8, Ep. 75
My guest this week is the award-winning journalist Chitra Ramaswamy. And, lucky me, Chitra lives in Edinburgh so - before I go any further - let me revel in the joy that was recording this episode IRL! With an actual RL person! I know…Anyway, back to Chitra. Her first book, Expecting: the inner life of pregnancy was garlanded with praise and won the Saltire First Book award. Her new memoir-come-social-history, Homelands, is the moving story of a most unlikely friendship - between Chitra, who was born in London in the 1970s to Indian immigrant parents, and Henry Wuga, a 98 year old jewish refugee who fled Nazi Germany in 1939.Sitting in Chitra’s kitchen (with her rescue dog, Daphne, who you will hear plenty of snoring in the background!) we discussed the importance of finding commonalities, learning to talk about shame, living with a mother-shaped hole and what her friendship with Henry taught her about a talent for happiness. We also talked about the midlife “gift” of responsibility, the tyranny of the life list, and why she hopes she’ll age eccentrically.You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including Homelands by Chitra Ramaswamy and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.
4/26/2022

Nina Stibbe on the relationship-saving power of a sofa bed!

Season 8, Ep. 74
What happens when “one of the great comic writers of our time” hits menopause? That’s the conundrum that faced this week’s guest, award-winning novelist Nina Stibbe when she sat down to write her new novel.With five bestselling books under her belt, including her memoir, Love Nina, which was turned into a hit TV series starring Helena Bonham Carter. And three novels centred around the turbulent teens and twenties of her alter-ego Lizzie Vogel, Nina decided it was time to turn her hand to middle age.In One Day I Shall Astonish The World, Nina examines the heartbreak, hilarity and occasional hatred of a friendship that stretches from late teens to mid-50s by way of very different love, life and career choices.Nina joined me from Cornwall to talk about being hit by the menopause truck, the pressure to be always funny and why her greatest midlife inspiration has come from comedy women. She also said she looks older than her mum and shared her ultimate midlife relationship-saver: the sofa bed.You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including One Day I Shall Astonish The World by Nina Stibbe and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.
4/19/2022

Jojo Moyes on radical life change in your 40s - FROM THE ARCHIVES

Season 7, Ep. 73
Back in the before times, I had an idea to launch a podcast that celebrated the achievements and lives of women over 40. With a couple of friends and an idiot-proof microphone I recorded the first series of what was to become The Shift. This is a replay of one of the first episodes I ever recorded - with my friend Jojo Moyes. Little did we know that two and a half years later we would only have seen each other a handful of times and EVERYTHING would have changed irrevocably. It's a real blast from the past in so many ways.Here are the original show notes:How does it feel to suddenly become ultra-visible just as the world is trying to invisible you? That’s what happened to this week’s guest, mega-selling novelist Jojo Moyes, when the book her old publishers didn't want to publish - Me Before You - became a global bestseller and smash-hit movie in her mid-40s.Since then every book Jojo has written has been a bestseller and she’s sold the movie rights to pretty much everything she’s ever written. (Not remotely jealous.) Her latest, The Giver Of Stars, the transporting story of a group of women setting up a horseback library in the Appalachians is currently at the top of the bestseller lists and a movie is underway.But life wasn’t always like that. Far from it. Jojo is funny and frank about the impact of stratospheric success on her professional and personal life. How it felt to be suddenly visible in her late forties. Health, fitness, freedom, a new found love of clothes and why she feels better than ever at 50. She also reveals how she finally overcame Imposter Syndrome, why she no longer suffers fools and how making new friends at 50 has been a revelation.The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker, edited by Emily Sandford.I’d love to hear what you think - please let me know on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambakerAnd if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/The Shift: How I (lost and) found myself after 40 - and you can too by Sam Baker is out now in hardback and available to buy here.The Giver Of Stars by Jojo Moyes is out now in paperback and available to buy here.Jojo's book recommendation: Three Women by Lisa Taddeo, out now in paperback and available to buy here.