March 4, 2015 | Posted in: Leading Hartfully, Living Hartfully

Are you consciously living with your heart and purposefully living Hartfully on a daily basis or are you waiting for the new mate, retirement, to lose weight, to find a new job, to quit your job, to start your business, for the kids to grow up or go to college, or to move cities? I’ve been very, very lucky to have great friends as role models who are living Hartfully and have shown me how to make moments count on a daily, weekly, yearly basis. I feel so blessed to have them in my life to show me the way. Most of them are older. I’m guessing my old soul is more attracted to souls older than mine to share their insight from a life well-lived. I’d like to pass along some insights from watching how my buddies move through life that gives me great ideas on how to live mine. I learn from clients, customers and close friends on how to be or not to be and I want to share their teachings.

Don’t wait. Do it now. Doesn’t matter about any outside circumstances, make it work. Many of my friends are already retired or have closed their businesses to play more and explore themselves and the world more. Greg went back to school at 62 to learn how to be a chef. He says most of the “kids” in his class are in their 20’s and want to know why he wants to get his chef’s certificate or degree or whatever it is he gets after months of chopping, sautéing, slicing and dicing. He said it’s the joy of knowing how to do the art well.  He’s doing it for the sheer joy of cooking and the confidence of knowing he’s learning how to do it well. There’s no other outside influence. He had a cancer scare recently and took a semester off and is now back in the kitchen. Funny how those wake-up calls make things clear. His wife Kathie recently closed her business after 26 years and is pumping up the volume of leisure pursuits in her life such as yoga, beach walking, hooping, starting a writers club and a book club, kayaking and travel.

I’ve recently lost my friend Karen to cancer. We met in a mastermind group called a Success Team in Germany around 25 years ago. It was Greg’s wife, Kathie who started the group of women and we all remain friends after all these years. Karen was very healthy, ran daily, her husband retired and started a travel company and they travelled well. She was still working when cancer struck and she fought valiantly for several years and lost the fight last Fall. She had never retired. She got sick while working long hours. She was looking forward to retiring some day and travelling more with her husband on his fabulous trips. That never happened.

My BFF Barb is my adventure travel buddy. We met at ski club in Germany nearly 30 years ago and share the same passion for exotic adventure travel, experiencing new discoveries, and doing things most women just don’t do. We’ve sailed the Greek Islands in a small sailboat, hiked for days in the Austrian Alps, survived horse-packing in Ireland in driving rainstorms, and skied all over the world in blizzards and dirt-laced slopes. Barb’s life purpose is to follow her passion and share it and that she does very well. She’s a great role model for me.  More about our adventures and our lessons learned in future posts. She’s decided that she’s reached her point of enoughness, is retiring early and bought a tugboat to live on and sail around America’s inter-coastal waterways and throughout the Caribbean. Guess who’s tapped to help her through some of the stretches?  Ahhhhhh, it’s nice to have a friend with a boat. She’s going to do it while she’s young enough and healthy enough. She just met a woman who is 85 and sails her own boat around seeking great adventures. Doing things while we’re healthy is so important.

Barb and I recently sailed on the Queen Mary 2 for a Trans-Atlantic crossing from New York City to Southampton. It was on both of our Hot 100 Lists to do one day and we decided a few months ago was the time. We were the youngest ones on the ship by a couple decades. I was wondering why they all waited so long to do it. Then after lots of shipboard conversations, found out this was not their first time for many of them. There are some who spend months on ships to see the world and have their meals served to them and be entertained and meet new people. This is a lifestyle and not a one-time cruise. Hmmmmm, new ideas spring into my head as to what retirement can look like. We thoroughly enjoyed the white gloved high tea service and I could certainly get used to that. We also dined at Sardis in New York before hitting a Broadway play and experienced Times Square – something that we had wanted to do for a long time to have a quintessential New York evening on the town.

My other friend Sue is an Artist with a capital A. She is the most creative person I’ve ever met. She can sing, dance, act, paint, photograph anything, write and whatever else artsy fartsy you can think of. Sue has created a very cool life to suit her fancy. She combines all her talents and passions and does free-lance work in all the areas mentioned above. She also combines her travel writing with her photography and writes off her international travel as a business expense, sells her work which pays for her trip and enjoys once adventure after another – never a dull moment.

My friend Silvana is another explorer who never has a dull moment. She has travelled with her husband and daughter across country in an Airstream trailer doing speaking gigs and having her daughter test drive internships while they wrote a book about their adventures and teen internships about their experience. They’ve also travelled for several years around the nation sponsored by a non-profit setting up special events to raise awareness. She’s been on a reality TV show and her next adventure is to house-sit for several houses for several months in Europe so they can do more exploration in other countries. Free lodging, getting paid to travel, what’s not to love?

So what are you waiting for? What does Living Hartfully mean to you? How are you stepping up right now to live how your heart wants to live? Let me know of our adventures. I’m always looking for more role models who get it and I just may share your story.

As the CEO (Chief Energizing Officer) at Hartful Living including and; I’m a Messenger and Mentor for women entrepreneurs, connecting them to their capacity to energize their work and their lives in the art of living Hartfully. At, you can make a living through giving with greeting cards and gifts to build your network net worth as an additive to your current business or an easy way to send gratitude and kindness to the world.