Being a third-generation workaholic had its benefits, like securing a strong work ethic from an early age, but it also had its downfalls. Too much work and not enough living can leave you unhealthy, dissatisfied with life, and can stress relationships with friends and family. But, like most addictions, workaholism can be broken, life can be enjoyed, and a new purpose can arise. 

Lucille Fleming was 100 years old when I interviewed her for Age to Perfection: How to Thrive to 100, Happy, Healthy, and Wise, a book I was co-authoring at the time. I had no idea that my research on longevity would lead me to my best friend, but it certainly did. The day I met Lucille, was the day that changed the trajectory of my life and broke the chains of work addiction that had plagued my family for decades. 

What started as a simple interview, grew into an incredible friendship that spanned four years, proving that true friendship knows no age. Together, we hit that sweet spot in life where smiles are abundant, and adventure is around every corner. I became more aware of all the goodness life has to offer, while Lucille found a new calling—she became a longevity expert! Together we traveled for media appearances, met incredibly interesting people, and shared many laughs and a few tears. While Lucille offered up her wisdom in abundance, it wasn’t until she died under unfortunate circumstances that I realized the first lesson she ever taught me would prove to be the most important.

Perspective is so easily lost in a chaotic world, and I’ve often said that everyone needs a Lucille in their life. That was the motivation behind my memoir Love, Life, and Lucille. Lucille changed my life in so many ways and I know she is now inspiring my readers just the same.

Judy Gaman is an award-winning author, sought after national speaker, host of the Stay Young America! podcast, and the CEO of Executive Medicine of Texas. Of her seven books, her favorite is Love, Life, and Lucille: Lessons Learned from a Centenarian, which has won five awards, including being a CIBA Hearten Book Awards Grand Prize Winner. You can learn more about Judy by going to