We had the good fortune of connecting with Kate Hufnagel and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kate, any advice for those thinking about whether to keep going or to give up?
I’ve had (almost) 50 years worth of life experiences and what I’ve learned is my life is more enjoyable when I don’t have expectations and take more of an experimental approach to things.

Looking back on my life, I put an extraordinary amount of ridiculously high expectations on myself in my 20s and 30s. I realize now that no one else had those same expectations of me. That realization has helped me go easier on myself in my 40s and I’ve never been happier with myself and my life.

And giving myself permission to treat new business ideas as experiments — let me try pursuing this opportunity, how about I try this approach, what if I say ‘no’ to this, what if I say ‘yes’ — has been a powerful compass in helping me focus on what I want my business to be, who I want to help and how I want to educate people.

So for me, if doing something doesn’t excite me, doesn’t light me up, doesn’t spark another idea … then I’ll figure out a way to gracefully stop doing it. This way I can fuel myself by focusing on all the things that bring me joy, which ultimately results in me bringing that joy to my community.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I believe my line of work is one-of-a-kind.

Ever since the late 1990’s when I moved to the Los Angeles area for my first full-time job as an engineer, I’ve been interested in — and some may say borderline obsessed with — working towards my own personal definition of “financial freedom” and how to protect my financial legacy.

One of the first books I read on this topic was Suze Orman’s “You’ve Earned It, Don’t Lose It.” In it, she talked about the importance of estate planning, including how to pass on financial assets to loved ones in a way that minimizes their tax burden. I followed her guidance and, before I was 30, I had a will and was working with a financial advisor. And the investments I’ve made in my future self over the last couple of decades have paid off multiple times over.

Combining my interest in my own financial legacy with a 25-year career in highly technical fields (a lot of IT and software-related work) uniquely positioned me to start The Digital Wrangler™. I understand how to protect my identity online and I’m passionate about educating and helping others plan for their own legacy.

Most of my clients have come to me after struggling with settling the estate of a loved one. Sadly, they learned some difficult lessons and they’ve promised themselves to put in the work necessary so they don’t leave a complicated web for their own loved ones to sort through.

My fundamental mission is to make things easier for loved ones — whether it’s by saving them time, money or both. And because my clients also cover a 20-30 year age range, I always work to meet them where they are. This means I’ll look to them to tell me how much — or how little — they want to utilize technology when organizing their important life details.

For me, my entire family lives in multiple states; none of us can get to each other without driving several hours or hopping on an airplane. So I want to leverage technology, whenever possible, to be able to access the vast majority of their important life’s details regardless of my location, whether I’m home in Colorado, on vacation in another country or giving a presentation at a national convention in another state.

And, here in Colorado, we all know that a wildfire can spark easily and spread quickly. So should we ever need to quickly leave our home, knowing our personal important life details can be accessed digitally means that’s one less thing we need to worry about when evacuating — giving us a few more critical minutes to grab medications, devices and chargers, sentimental family treasures and whatever toys and snacks kids or furry family members may need.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Colorado Springs and Colorado itself have so much to offer that I feel like this is an impossible question!

I’d take my bestie to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Training Center, the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo (and feed the giraffes!), check out Manitou Springs and maybe cheer on the Switchbacks. We’d visit Helen Hunt falls, explore the Garden of the Gods, and hike Mt Herman.

In between it all, we’d hit my favorite eateries: breakfast at the Speed Trap and R&R Coffee Café, lunch at Black Forest Foods Café, and dinner at Four (Chef Brother Luck beat Bobby Flay!), Margarita at Pine Creek and Till. We’d fit in drinks at uva wine bar, District11 and Cork & Cask. Loyal, Serrano’s and Kinship would provide our coffee fix. And somehow we’d make time to visit Distillery 291, 3 Hundred Days of Shine and 1350 Distilling.

And, after all those adventures, I’d make sure to carve out an overnight trip to Mt Princeton Hot Springs for a little rejuvenation, Colorado style.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’ve been so fortunate to have routinely been surrounded with supportive mentors and friends who’ve always had my back.

I must first mention my husband. We’ve been together for eight years and took full advantage of Colorado’s laws and married ourselves last fall along Independence Pass. He’s exceptionally talented at making me laugh and his unconditional, emotional support has been steadfast since the day we met, regardless of whatever “crazy” idea I may toss his way.

The community of small business owners I’ve met through or because of the National Association of Productivity & Organizing Professionals (NAPO) — both nationally and within Colorado — is full of energetic, supportive and motivating individuals. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention: Susie, Leticia, Bev, Cheryl, Julie, Rachael, Stephanie, Erin, Denise, and Pat.

Before becoming a professional legacy and estate organizer, I had a 25-year career in the corporate world. Many of my former colleagues — whether they realize it or not — inspired me, mentored me, coached me, or blazed a trail for me. And they were recent colleagues or individuals I worked with 20 years ago, it’s important for me to mention: Kathleen, Sue, Karen, Ev, Lisa, chele, Elaine, Karl, and Jim.

Website: www.thedigitalwrangler.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thedigitalwrangler/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kate-hufnagel

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thedigitalwrangler

Youtube: https://youtube.com/@thedigitalwrangler

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