Before I ever met Jacqueline Boone in person, I knew we’d become instant friends. And we did. I first learned of Jackie’s work through our mutual friend, Kristin Lajeunesse of Will Travel For Vegan Food and followed her blog, 6 Months to Live, long before our in person meet-and-greet last summer in San Francisco. Contrary to what you might think, Jackie (thankfully) has never been diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. She, however, lives each day as if it could be her last. Jackie’s zest for life, her love of exploration and passion for her business are truly contagious. She lives a life that most of us dream of AND she gets paid to live it! Jackie is a writer, an entrepreneur, an explorer, a digital marketing maven, a teacher and a do-gooder all mixed into one. Is all of that even possible? If you’re Jackie Boone, it absolutely is.
While this guest blog post may be my first that’s not directly about veganism or health, I feel it’s most definitely related to both. I believe that we all can make choices to create the life we want to live. We can chose to do good in the world and to be true to who we are. Cancer taught me that. Jackie is the living, breathing proof, as she embodies all of these things. She is the “Live Your Live to the Fullest” guru as far as I’m concerned. Without giving away too much more information about who Jackie is and what she does, I invite you to get to know more about her work and ongoing experiment by reading on. Welcome to Cowgirls & Collard Greens Jackie, now take it away!
“What would you do if you had 6 months to live?” That single question forever changed my life. It invited me to question what life could be and inspired me to take 6 months to go for my dreams and explore what it meant to truly live. The original “6 Month Experiment” turned into a life philosophy: be true to who you are and live a life you love.
The truth is that none of us know when our time will come, so going for our dreams now is all the more important.
I’ve done and do a lot of traveling. I absolutely love it! I’ve found that when I’m on a trip, I feel a greater sense of freedom. I tend to be in more amusement when things go differently than planned, savor more meals, and take in much more of my surroundings. I think this is in large part because I’m conscious of my adventure’s beginning and end.
I knew I only had 5 days in Scotland last month as part of a 3-week European extravaganza last year, so when I had to make the decision of renting a car and driving on the opposite side of the road to get to the Isle of Skye for 24 hours, I said, “Yes!” knowing that this was my time and who knew when I’d have another opportunity to visit. I stayed up late singing with new friends. Woke up at dawn to see the sunrise. Treated myself to a nice meal.
What if we approached life as an ongoing adventure? We’re all here such a short time in the scheme of the cosmos, and you only have this life once, so how will you choose to spend your trip on earth?
I often write about my grandmother who lived to be 100-years-old. To the outside world, she was a kind and good-hearted Kentucky woman, but those of us who loved her, knew she was a master of life. She was the oldest of 9, lived in Louisville her entire life, and went in the ocean for her first time in her 70’s. Mary T forgave. She let go. She had the strongest faith of anyone I’ve ever met.
As she got older, especially around the 90 mark, everyone in our family knew that there were no guarantees. She was in great health, but she was 90. Every holiday, our family would join together, and she’d say grace. At the end, she’d get a little teary and say, “I love you all. I hope I’m here next year.”
Those last 10 years of her life were especially sweet because we all knew moments were precious and time wasn’t guaranteed. Each phone call ended with at least 3 “I love you’s” because that might be the last time. She invited us to be our best selves, and in those moments, we were.
“Do not fear death, but rather the unlived life. You don’t have to live forever. You just have to live.” -Natalie Babbitt
Life is beautiful. It’s precious. It’s ultimately whatever you want it to be. Join me and others from all over the world in creating your own 6-month experiment and explore what life’s greatest adventures can be!
Jacqueline Boone is an international business & digital marketing consultant, writer, and entrepreneur. Her deepest passion is connecting with people all over the world, sharing their stories, and helping people get clear about the unique gifts they bring to the world, so they can live their passion and make a difference. Her blog and soon-to-be online publication, 6 Months to Live, began as a personal life experiment that started with the question, “What would you do if you had 6 months to live?” and has transformed into a life philosophy centered around living each day and following one’s dreams! To learn more about Jacqueline, her upcoming book, Heart Language, and the ways she helps clients, visit her website or connect with her on:
*Both Jacqueline and Kayle will be speakers at the upcoming Passion Into Action Women’s Conference sponsored by See Jane Do on May 31, 2014 in Smartsville, California. For more information and to register for this amazing event that features everyday women doing extraordinary things, click here.