Vital Signs: The Nurture of Passion as We Age with Dorian Mintzer and Gregg Levoy

An affirmative approach to aging takes into account that new parts of us are always clamoring for airtime. The soul and spirit don't “retire” even if our careers do, and there's a difference between getting older and growing older.

These parts of us could be passions and creative leaps, service projects and leadership roles in the community, a new line of work or an exploration of some non-work modes of expression, or simply rediscovering the sense of wonder and love of learning. They ask us to continually reinvent ourselves and stay close to our deepest sense of passion and purpose.

In this episode, we'll explore the nature and nurture of passion as we age – what inspires it and what defeats it, how we lose it, and how we get it back.

In this episode, you'll discover:

  • Passion can be cultivated and turned on as well as turned off
  • Passion is in the risk-the willingness to step from the sidelines onto the playing field.
  • Passion breeds passion, and disinterest breeds disinterest. If we lack passion in our own lives, our other relationships will be denied that energy.
  • Passion is more than exuberance; it's endurance.
  • Passion is intimately related to health. To the degree passion is vitality, honoring our passions enhances our vitality.

About Gregg Levoy:

Gregg Levoy, author of Callings: Finding and Following An Authentic Life (rated among the Top 20 Career Publications by the Workforce Information Group) and Vital Signs: The Nature and Nurture of Passion, is the former behavioral specialist at USA Today and a regular blogger for Psychology Today.

He has presented at the International Conference on Positive Aging, Smithsonian Institution, Environmental Protection Agency, Microsoft, American Counseling Association, National Career Development Association, and many others. He has been a frequent media guest, including ABC-TV, CNN, NPR, and PBS.

A former adjunct professor of journalism at the University of New Mexico and former columnist and reporter for USA Today and the Cincinnati Enquirer, he has written for the New York Times Magazine, Washington Post, Omni, Psychology Today, Fast Company, Reader's Digest, and many others.

Get in touch with Gregg Levoy:
Buy Gregg's book,
Visit Gregg's website,

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Caregiving and New Tools to Help Caregivers with Dorian Mintzer and Viki Kind

As a bioethicist, Viki Kind gets a lot of questions asking, “Did I do the right thing?” or “Is it time to.?” Her goal is to ensure caregivers make better decisions at the beginning so they aren't left with doubt and regret. Here are some typical questions she gets: I buried my mother and she wanted to be cremated; was I wrong? I don't know if I did the right thing when I told the doctor to take my husband off life support. Is it time to move my partner who has Parkinson's to a skilled nursing facility? Is it time for me to take my aunt's car keys away? There is an unrepresented patient and no conservators/guardians available, so who should make the decisions? I feel so guilty about … I think I made a mistake about …

The great thing about bioethics is that it has great decision-making tools that create person-centered, respectful, and compassionate decisions. She will share these strategies and approaches so you can be an empowered caregiver and decision-maker.

In this episode, you'll discover:

  • Bioethical strategies and approaches for making the tough medical decisions.
  • How to get past your guilt so you can live in peace.
  • How to recognize your role and obligations when making decisions for others.

About Viki Kind:

Viki Kind is a clinical bioethicist, professional speaker, and hospice volunteer. Her award-winning book, The Caregiver's Path to Compassionate Decision Making: Making Choices For Those Who Can't, guides families and professionals who are making decisions for those who have lost capacity. Viki is known as “The People's Bioethicist” because she is a rare individual who bridges two worlds: the health care professional and the family struggling to make the right decision. She is an honorary board member of the Well Spouse Association and has been a caregiver to six family members for many years.

Get in touch with Viki Kind:
Buy Viki's book,
Visit Vicki's website,
Access Viki's handout,

What to do next:

Libraries Serving Older Adults through Community Partnership with Dorian Mintzer and Nancy Walton-House and Wendy Pender

Some library systems are changing their approach to better serve older adults.  In this interview you will learn how the King County Library System (KCLS) in Washington State is participating in and initiating community partnerships with individuals and organizations.  You will learn how the Aging Well Learning Community was a key influence in this movement.  You will learn how other community organizations have become partners as well.  At the present time, KCLS offers abundant programs on positive aging and welcoming meeting places that support the community.

In this episode, you'll discover:

  • The story of the Aging Well Learning Community
  • The development of the KCLS Older Adults Program
  • The definition and practice of community partnership
  • The engagement of KCLS community partners and implementation of Older Adults Programs

About Nancy Walton-House:

Nancy Walton-House is a semi-retired counseling psychologist and organization development consultant. She is an alumna of Seattle University, the University of Washington and the Organization Systems Renewal Program. She is a trained facilitator with the Northwest Center for Creative Aging. She taught in 4 universities, worked in seven medical centers in clinical and organization development roles and consulted with multiple organizations. She founded the Aging Well Learning Community in 2009 and continues to lead it today. The community meets monthly for an interactive program focused on positive aging with consciousness, courage and contribution. Members select by consensus a variety of literary, music and art projects for their programs, and the King County Library System hosts these programs.

About Wendy Pender:

In addition to her MLS from the University of Pittsburgh, Wendy Pender has a Certificate in Gerontology from the University of Washington and is a trained facilitator with the Northwest Center for Creative Aging. She has over 25 years of experience as a librarian and branch manager, and now serves as Older Adults Program Coordinator at the King County Library System (KCLS) in Washington State, one of the largest and busiest library systems in the U.S. In 2016, the Urban Libraries Council honored Wendy at its annual conference in Kansas City as one of the recipients of a 2016 Top Innovator Award.

Get in touch with Nancy Walton-House:
Read Nancy’s article:
Visit the Older Adults Program:
Get in touch with Wendy Pender:
Read Wendy’s article: 

What to do next:

Dreams for the Second Half of Life with Dorian Mintzer and Rick Moody

We all dream, but not all of us remember our dreams, and many of us are puzzled by what dreams might mean. In this program, we'll consider dreams as an “inner GPS system,” giving us clues about who we are and who we might become in later life. We'll look at dreams during retirement and coping with illness, as well as dreams about creativity, family relationships, and memories of where we have come on the journey of life, including anticipations of life's end.

The dreams shared in this presentation are drawn from an article Rick wrote, “Dreams for the Second Half of Life,” and are drawn from many years of conducting dream workshops. As the Talmudic phrase states, “A dream uninterpreted is like a letter unopened.”

In this episode, you will discover more about how to open and read these nightly letters to ourselves, as well as:

  • Develop an appreciation of dreams as an “inner GPS system”
  • Understand some of the clues dreams give us about who we are and who we may become as we age.
  • Learn more about how to open, read and understand our dreams

About Rick Moody:

Harry R. (Rick) Moody recently retired as Vice President and Director of Academic Affairs for AARP in Washington, DC. A graduate of Yale (1967), he received his Ph.D. from Columbia University (1973). He is currently a Visiting Professor at Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, California.

Dr. Moody is the author of over 100 scholarly articles, as well as many books, including The Five Stages of the Soul, now translated into seven languages worldwide. He was named by Utne Reader Magazine as one of the “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World.”

Dr. Moody is at work on a new book, Leaving a Legacy: Our Aging Society and Future Generations, focusing on public pensions and environmental protection. He is currently the Board President of Gray Is Green, the National Senior Conservation Corp.

Get in touch with Rick Moody:
Buy Rick's Book:

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Aging in the 21st Century with Dorian Mintzer and Dr. Gillian Leithman

In her talk on the work motivation of mature workers, Dr. Gill will discuss what older workers want out of work as they transition into the second half of life. Based on her research, which is part of her Ph.D. thesis, she will discuss how people determine whether they should continue to work beyond age 65 or retire. She'll also focus on the importance of achievement as people age. Lastly, Dr. Gill will share her findings regarding “generativity,” its importance for an organization's competitive advantage, and why it requires a work environment that nurtures and values expertise.

In this episode, you'll discover:

  • What the number 65 signifies to older workers
  • Why achievement still matters, and to whom
  • About “generativity”: the corporate “sweet spot” for aging workers and their organizations

About Gillian Leithman:

Gillian Leithman, Ph.D., is a corporate trainer specializing in health and wellness seminars and workshops. Gillian has facilitated programs for some of Canada's premiere businesses and organizations, such as Bell Canada, Air Canada, TD Canada Trust, Federal Express, Novartis, Telus, Hollis Wealth, HSBC, the RCMP, and Exxon Mobil.

Dr. Leithman is best known for her pre-retirement seminars, which focus on the psychological and social aspects of retirement planning to ensure a smooth and fulfilling transition. When she is not facilitating seminars, she teaches in the management faculty at the John Molson School of Business, where she is an Assistant Professor. Her research focus encompasses the career motivation of older workers, the retirement transition process, age-friendly workplaces, and knowledge-sharing cultures.

Her research has been featured at the Canadian Psychological Association, the Ontario and Canadian Gerontological Associations, and The Canadian Council for Small Business and Entrepreneurship. She has twice received the Best Paper Award from the Administrative Sciences Association of Canada. She has also been featured in the Montreal Gazette, Reader's Digest, and the National Post and has been a guest on the Tommy Schnurmacher radio show and on CBC.

Dr. Leithman is the founder of Rewire to Retire and Life Skills Toolbox.

Get in touch with Gillian Leithman:

Visit Gillian's website:
Access Gillian's 4-part webinar series:
Access Gillian's Handout:

What to do next: