We lost Andrea too soon, July 2023.

Reminder: It’s (almost) never too late

When the vivacious Andrea Pilati got diagnosed with a terminal disease, she went through what most of us might: depression about needing to stop working and the loss of her professional identity, and a deep desire to extract meaning from the life she had left. Given the doctors’ estimate that she had 18-24 months left, she knew she didn’t want to sit around waiting to die. 

“I didn’t want to be depressed and sad for the rest of my life,” she told our Reset Lab audience in November 2022. “I wanted to really enjoy it, you know? Like, get out there — because I love life!”

When the advice of her therapist didn’t suit her, she joined Kickstartology Coaching, hoping to figure out what was next. “I’ve always loved doing stuff and experiencing things, but I’m also introverted and shy. I thought maybe I should volunteer. I was talking to my therapist, and she said, ‘Well, you could go read to people at long-term care facilities and take them on trips to bingo.’ And I’m like, ‘I would rather die now.'” Did we mention Andrea is funny as all heck?

We encourage you to watch Andrea’s video because listening to her speak about her end-of-life journey has transformed how we coach. The truth is, none of us know how much time we have, so how might we all benefit from being a bit more like Andrea and squeezing the essence of all that’s good about life every chance we get?

We caught up with Andrea recently, when she returned from a trip to South America and Antarctica, to chat about her Kickstartology experience. She has two more trips planned this year, and if you knew all the cool stuff she’s accomplished in a short amount of time, you’d be in awe. We are so lucky to have her in our community, sharing her truth, encouraging us all to book those medical appointments we’ve been putting off, and just generally being an effing delight.

What was your big a-ha moment in Kickstartology?
It was the “write-your-own movie lesson” where you ask us to imagine being the star, the director…everything. That spoke to me, and I broke through and figured out how I wanted to live the rest of my life. And I’m doing it! Yes, my movie is a Nancy Meyers/Patti Smith mashup! As soon as that happened, everything made sense.

How has your self-image changed? 
I feel like I’m smiling inside most of the time. My physical body isn’t up to par, but my spirit is strong. I tell people that I love them a lot more. I feel mentally more peaceful than I have in my entire life.

Why should someone go through Kickstartology Coaching?
I immediately think of two people who would greatly benefit from it right now. The clarity KC provides in terms of working through issues — just by committing to “the Model” and practicing it mindfully — is phenomenal. It’s a commitment — the best one I ever made. (Or rather, a close second to marrying the same man twice!)

If you’re in flux, confused, or indecisive about what you want your life to be, this program is it. It’s not easy. Doing the program requires self-awareness and work, but the rewards are astronomical. Life-changing, honestly.

What was the value of being in a group? 
It was so powerful to have the group — so many of our issues and strategies were similar enough that we learned from each others’ stories. I learned so much from everyone, coaches and coachees!

What is the most significant realization you had as the result of Kickstartology?
I can make the time I have left beautiful, open, free, and peaceful. In fact, I’m happier than I’ve ever been in my entire life. Ironically, I’m dying.

How has your life changed as a result of Kickstartology? 
I’m out and living my best years! My relationships are strong and honest. When I get in an anxiety spiral, I give myself a shake and go back to the model; it makes sense.

Read more inspiring Kickstartology client spotlights or check out a full video playlist of our members speaking at our Reset Lab workshop.

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