Ilchi Lee’s New Book: “I’ve Decided to Live 120 Years: The Ancient Secret to Longevity, Vitality, and Life Transformation”

As a physician who is dedicated to enhancing the healthiness of all people, I am greatly appreciative of the vision, practical guidance, and empowerment offered by Ilchi Lee’s new book, I’ve Decided to Live 120 Years: The Ancient Secret to Longevity, Vitality, and Life Transformation.

This book calls us to make a profoundly transformative decision to live 120 years. It is a really important choice because what it’s saying to each of us, whatever age we are now, is that I envision a long future for myself, a future that I need to start preparing for today. Even if we are over 60, we are not close to the end game yet, because with a life of 120 years, there’s another 60 years waiting for us! So we can still have the hope and optimism to gain control of our lives and live as if we had half of our lives left.

Making this decision today additionally offers us an opportunity to look back. Who are we? Who have we been? What have we liked about our lives, and what do we want to change?

One of the great ways Ilchi Lee introduces in this book that we can make a change is taking small actions that build up to something big. One example of a simple, small change in lifestyle is doing One-Minute Exercises throughout the day. We don’t have to have a fancy gym membership or special high-cost tennis shoes or a special workout uniform to get in the exercise we need to be healthy. All we need is to decide every hour of the day to spend one minute doing something physically—getting up, moving your body, walking . . . it’s so easy.

But Ilchi Lee goes beyond physical exercise. Unique to his book in the vast ocean of information on healthy living is that he extends an invitation to be aligned with our own personal spirituality—to be in touch with our soul, to be in touch with our values. He talks about how to integrate and get close to our spiritual life and bring it as a firm part of everyday living, such as by learning and meditating on a regular basis. The attention to both the physical and spiritual components to longevity is key, as we are comprehensive beings with many aspects that affect our overall well-being. I find this to be truly important in the context of all of the other work we have to do if we’re going to have a long life.

Besides the changes we need to make to our own lives, Ilchi Lee reminds us that we should not be thinking of our lives in isolation. We should be thinking that we can contribute to community life by connecting to young people, connecting to older people who are in need, connecting to fight for the health of the earth and environment. These things give our lives meaning and transcendent value.

I thought especially powerful were the stories and observations in the book around creating a healthy world and environment. We all need to take care of our little corner of the world. In the process of taking care of it, we create the bonds of community, we’re exercising, and we’re having positive attitudes.

This is a beautiful journey this thing called life. And it’s a beautiful thing when we can decide to change our life and stick to that change. If we get nothing else out of this book, it is the opportunity to make a choice, to make a decision, that says, today is the day that I am taking control over my life so I can have the best possible future I can envision.

To learn more about the book, visit