Yesterday, today, tomorrow. Why they all matter.


Yesterday morning, I visited my grandmother’s grave.

I never met her. 

And I wish I knew more about what kind of a person she was. Yet I felt more connected to her than I ever have before…

The last few days I’ve taken a lovely little trip down memory lane. 

After a beautiful wedding at Chateau Thanvillé in the Alsace region of France, a few of us spent a perfect afternoon in Strasbourg, then on to a memorable afternoon and evening in Paris. Good conversation over a glass of wine along the River Seine… it was magical. 

But even more special was taking the train north through France and Belgium to spend some nostalgic time in Holland.

I biked along the famous canals in Amsterdam, singing out loud as I did.  And then I visited my cousin and family including my Goddaughter just outside of The Hague, where my Mum was from. 

We walked along the famous boardwalk in Scheveningen where I have so many special memories from as a child, had dinner on the beach where I used to love to play (and watched as my cousin’s kids were doing the same) and witnessed a glorious sunset over a nice little borreltje (drinkie.)  

We ate poffertjes and bitterballen ~ two traditions and dutch musts. 

And then we visited my step grandmother, the only grandparent figure I remember as a child.

Although she married my grandfather later in life when my Mum was already an adult, growing up when we would go and visit my mother’s family in Holland, it would always include a stop to our beloved Bommie’s place. And because we wouldn’t see her very often, she would always spoil us rotten when we did. A visit was never complete without a trip to the local toy store!

She’s now well into her nineties, in a home and in a wheelchair, and although she still looks great, she’s not quite the same Bommie I remember. 

And then we went to go and see my Grandmother’s grave… 

Again, while I never knew her, I felt more connected to her than I ever have. 

Strangely enough, the anniversary of her passing falls on the same day we buried my mother. I didn’t realise until that moment. 

I also realized for the first time my mother was 24 when she lost her mother, the same age I was. 

Yes, I had a moment. 

I spoke to my grandmother, I spoke to my mother. 

I expressed gratitude, love, and tears, as I asked them both to continue to guide and watch over me. 

This short, but very special visit to Holland couldn’t have come at a more perfect time. 

At first I was disappointed I wasn’t going to be able to hike any of the Camino as initially planned, given my broken foot. 

And yet maybe everything unfolded exactly as it was supposed to. I’ve felt more connected to my mother recently, and being in her hometown was even more comforting than I imagined.

It got me thinking about my past, my present, and my future. 

Now I know we’re only supposed to live in the present – in the here and now – and yet I don’t think that means we have to ignore what has come before this moment, nor what lies ahead. 

In fact, I think if we want to live in the here and now as powerfully as possible, we need to acknowledge our past and at the same time look to our future. 

We need all three. 

While at times some people can be tied too heavily to what has already happened, and are not able to truly be where they are, we can’t ignore our past, either. 

And although constantly looking too much into what may or may not be in our future sometimes prevents us from being here now, it’s also important to look ahead from our current view. 

We’re now entering into the second half of Summer. (Is it just me or is it going by far too quickly?!?)

There are still pools to jump into, patio conversations to dive into, ice creams to indulge into. 

So enjoy each moment as it comes, knowing it’s okay to get excited for all that is yet to come, while also reminiscing on good times already had. 

Just don’t spend too much time ruminating you end up living more in your head than you do in reality. 

It’s important to live in the present, yes. 

And it’s also important to acknowledge both the important role the past has played in bringing us to this moment, as well as the important role this moment will play in how we choose to live into the future. 

Acknowledge the people, too. Important figures and relationships are everything. And if there is someone you haven’t been in touch with as much as you’d like recently, reach out to them. Even if they are no longer with us, you can still talk to them. 

Yesterday, today, tomorrow. 
Past, present, future. 

So interconnected… and we need them all. 

How’s that for some light Friday philosophical thoughts as I get ready to hop on the plane and head back to the other side of the pond, eh?!?

And now I’m curious… how is your present moment touched by your past or by what is yet to come? I look forward to hearing from you in the comments below.

It’s not about the summit…

It was 11pm. And it was cold.

Although we were strongly encouraged to go to bed after dinner, knowing what lay ahead, most of us hadn’t managed to sleep. 

Perhaps it was the temperature, or the timing, or the sheer excitement. 

I had barely got my mitts on, and was still adjusting my poles to the proper length, before we were off. 

‘Duende!’ 

(‘Let’s go!’ in Swahili)

One by one, step by step, in single file line, we began our final summit night ascent up Kilimanjaro.

I looked up from the path and the carefully trodden footprints to the women in line ahead of me, and to all of the guides on either side of us – with two more than normal there were seven altogether – and I felt both proud and protected. 

‘One team, one dream!’ Hemedi, one of our main guides, had declared our first night together. And it had quickly become our slogan, our proclamation, our lifeline. 

We were one team – and a powerful force at that – with one dream… to make it to the summit.

We continued to climb, but it somehow felt more serious, more somber than before.

Six days earlier we’d begun our climb up Africa’s largest peak.

We’d conquered rain and snow, the famous Barranco wall, and even Lava Tower – our day 3 destination – who’s high altitude had affected the majority of our group leaving many ill and worried they wouldn’t be able to go on.

Although at times challenging, and despite long days of nine plus hours of hiking, I never doubted my ability to get to the top. 

And although physical fitness doesn’t guarantee one won’t be affected by altitude sickness, l was still pretty confident I’d be able to make it happen. 

Until I wasn’t. 

Just then I began to feel it. 

Not only were my hands freezing, my tummy was turning. And then came the gurgles. 

I began to feel it. The altitude. 

It was hours before our first short break. 

And not a moment too soon.

Even then, there was no time to dawdle. It was hurry up and do your business if you must, grab some water, and get back in line.

(Although I certainly felt better afterwards, having to do your business on the side of the mountain, where it was very difficult not to be exposed somehow, and in the middle of the night when the last thing you feel like doing is taking off all of your layers, is not so much fun let me tell you!)

By the time I was back, we were immediately off again in our single file line.  

There was no singing, no laughing, no bubbly conversation as there had been the days previously. 

‘This isn’t fun anymore!’ someone from our group proclaimed. 

My heart sank. I’m sure she wasn’t the only one feeling that way. In fact, I’m pretty sure we were all beginning to feel that way.

Perhaps I’m making it out to be a bit more somber than it actually was. I mean it wasn’t all that awful – at least at first – but it was also no walk in the park.

At first, I was quite enjoying the rhythm of our steps.

I was enjoying the quiet. The nature. The team we were a part of.

I was beginning to realize we were now on a mission that became bigger than any one of us.

But after a few hours, the first in line peeled off. And then the next one. And the one two behind me. 

I was also beginning to realize we may not all make it. 

As a team leader that’s tough. And when you’re not allowed to get out of line yourself to check in on your people, and when you yourself aren’t feeling so hot, it makes it even harder. 

I began to recite a mantra in my mind:

'we will summit, 
we will summit, 
and we’ll be,
warm again.’

It had a distinct rhythm and tune. And I must have recited it several hundred times before we finally made it to the crater rim of the mountain, Stella point. 

And by that point, my stomach had settled a little bit. We had been going for almost 8 hours. 

The next 45 minutes of the climb, also the last 45 minutes of the climb, although not overly physically demanding, lasted an eternity. 

However as the sun slowly began to offer its morning light, I felt hopeful. 

My fear that I may not make it, which was pretty real at some point during the ascent, subsided. It was happening. 

It was freezing, we were freezing, and a few brave members of the group – who had declared more than once they were ready to turn back, and who had been persuaded more than once to keep going – were barely hanging on. 

It was no longer about me making it to the top, and more about making sure all those still with us would make it.

I knew this sign had better show up sooner rather than later!

We began to pass fellow climbers coming in the opposite direction, big grins on their faces (or occasionally very white in their faces!) heading down the mountain.  

‘Congratulations!’ they shouted. And I knew we were close. 

And then off in the near distance I saw her. 

The sign. 

The official post that marked the summit. 

We began to quicken our steps. 

And suddenly, there we were. 

We made it. 

We had reached the peak, summited to the summit, achieved our goal. 

So we took the picture, dug deep to smile big, and then just like that, the moment was over and were already on our way down. 

Blink and you could’ve missed it. 

And if I’m honest, it was almost a bit anticlimactic. 

Now in all fairness it was snowing and very cloudy and there was no beautiful sunrise to be seen. Perhaps that would have made a difference. 

But still, this big summit reaching moment wasn’t what I thought it would be.

And as I began the descent back down, I realized although we may have made it to the summit, it wasn’t about making it to the summit at all. 

It never was. 

And it never is. 

Whether a summit, a destination, a goal… 

Here’s the thing. You’ll never get ‘there’ – yet you’ve already arrived. 

It really is about the experience, the journey, the steps you have to go through in life order to get to where you want to go, and more importantly the person you have to become in the process. 

And that was certainly the case for our climb up Kilimanjaro.

The actual moment of reaching the summit paled in comparison to all of the special moments we enjoyed leading up to it.

The singing and dancing and cheering we did with all of our guides and porters at camp. 

The deep discussions we’d get into in our dining tent on life, love and diamox (to take, or not to take?)

The sharing of our roses and thorns at the end of every evening, which ended in laughter or tears or powerful breakthroughs.

Hard to believe this epic experience of a lifetime has come to an end. But the learnings and the connections are only just beginning.

And these special moments will truly last a lifetime. 

And I am so freakin’ proud of what our ‘one team, one dream’ accomplished. 

So although I will continue to set goals and climb mountains and may even  attempt to once again reach the summit – and hope you do too – I’m going to focus on enjoying the journey (hopefully with less gurgles next time!) 

“It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that maters, in the end.” ~ Ursula K. Le Guin 

Indeed. 

Have a FAB week!

Wanna Learn the 3 Pillars of Happiness?

My week in pics: Seeing monkeys and sloths at the famous Manuel Antonio National Park, sneaking in some beach time in Costa Rica, and saying goodbye to all of my Remote Year adventures and coming HOME!

Happy Friday!

(And happy 1st day of Advent!)

And greetings from where I’m back on Canadian soil, in home surf, and in cold weather!

It’s been a bit of an adjustment these past few days I’ve been home, however I must say it also feels good to be back. 

Although it’s been so fun to experience adventures all over the world, ultimately, I’m realizing happiness doesn’t necessarily come from the epic moments in life.  Continue reading “Wanna Learn the 3 Pillars of Happiness?”

Leave Your Ego At Home! Reflections from Costa Rica

My week in pics: Having an incredible experience traveling 7 hours from San Jose, Costa Rica to the remote community of Sabaló, volunteering with UGO Travel For Change, Secret Costa Rica, and the Asamoas Association for women… (and really getting a glimpse into the life of this welcoming community!) 

Greetings from the lovely little remote town of Sabalo, Costa Rica (kinda in the middle of nowhere!) surrounded by nothing but forest and green and so much beauty.

I’m honoured to be a part of a service trip with UGO Travel For Change, where a powerful group of women are working hard building a shed for the Asamoas – an association of women to empower one another and this community at large – another very powerful group of women. 

It’s been an amazing experience so far… and what we’re realizing is that it’s not really about service or building a shed at all. Continue reading “Leave Your Ego At Home! Reflections from Costa Rica”

Leave Your Phone at Home! Lessons learned from El Camino de Santiago to La Tomatina Festival

My Week in Pics: Going ‘off the grid’ and enjoying the beauty, splendour, and serenity walking six days of the Coastal Route of El Camino de Santiago… and then the very next day experiencing the craziness that is La Tomatina Festival!

 

Leave Your Phone at Home! Lessons learned from El Camino de Santiago to La Tomatina Festival

 

For the first time all year, I completely unplugged. For five whole days. I mean no laptop, no facebook, no wifi. And it was glorious.

It may not sound like a whole lotta time, and yet those days while walking El Camino de Santiago I was able to be fully present… to smell the flowers, to feel the wind, and to experience heart-full, soulful connections with other individuals.

I wanted to stay longer. I wanted to complete it. And one day, I will.

BUT, I had things to do, people to see, and La Tomatina Festival to attend!

Well, after what transpired, perhaps I should have stayed on El Camino after all…

Watch this week’s video to hear the story and find out what it really means to disconnect.

So, what would be left if you were stripped away of all your ‘stuff?

And what would it look like to ‘DO less’ and ‘BE more’ ?

I want to hear from you! Leave your comments and thoughts below, or over on YouTube

 

Have a FAB week!

 

I Had You at Hello! 5 Ways to Build Instant (& Lasting) Connection

How to have them at ‘Hello!’ : 5 Ways to Build Instant (& Lasting) Connection

Happy Friday!

So I am loving being here in Prague – it’s like walking in a story book. Every corner boasts a new beautiful building and houses so much history.   And although we were told that Czech people can be very reserved and cold, I haven’t found that to be the case at all. I’ve already made a few local friends, including Jacob and Anna, who have the ‘Cava house’ at the local farmers market, where I just enjoyed an iced coffee

However, one thing I find a bit frustrating? I don’ speak the language! And I hate – hate is a strong word – I strongly dislike when I can’t simply engage in conversation with those I meet as I normally do.

For me, communication is one of the ways I like to connect with people. And yet, it is not the only way! And I’ve had to rely on some others since being here.

Do you want to connect more easily, and more quickly, with those you meet and work with?

Listen to this week’s video and learn 5 ways to do exactly that.

Again, the five ideas are:

Acknowledge.

Learn their name. 

Be the first.

Speak their language.

Self-disclose. 

Test it out this week! I challenge you to connect just a little bit BIGGER this week! And then let me know it goes! Leave your comments below, or over on my YouTube Channel.

Happy Friday, and have a FAB week!

Raise Your Glass! It’s Time To Celebrate!

My week in pics: Learning how to make the perfect Mate (a BIG part of the Argentinian culture), exploring the city and hanging out with my new friend I met on the airplane, walking tour of Buenos Aires (and going to the famous grave of Eva Perón, aka Evita!), getting dressed up to go to a famous Speak Easy to celebrate some birthdays, which are all the rage here!

Raise Your Glass! It’s Time To Celebrate!

 

Happy Friday!

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE finding an excuse to celebrate! Birthdays, anniversaries, because it’s Friday, or JUST BECAUSE! And no, you are never too old for balloons!

Well today, we’re going to talk about celebrating, and the importance of it! And moreover I’m going to share 3 reasons as to why we don’t always take the time to celebrate, and 3 ideas how we can change that!

Enjoy!

(transcript below)

Have a FAB week!

Carol - high res

 

 

P.S. Are you ready to ‘Unleash Your Powerful Woman Within?!?‘ There are still a few tickets left for our event in Toronto on Monday! JOIN US! 

 

 

TRANSCRIPT:

Happy Friday!

I’m Carol Schulte, and welcome to my Happy Friday video blog.

Today is all about celebration!

Why? Well, it’s Friday, I happen to love celebrating, and it just so happens to be the celebrating BIG day in the 5-Day Living Big challenge!

You see, I love a good excuse to celebrate. Birthdays, anniversaries, and I also love balloons! (And I believe you can celebrate with balloons at any age!)

But I also don’t think we necessarily have to wait for special occasions to celebrate. In fact, I would argue you can find a reason to celebrate each and every day, if you choose to see it that way.

So why is it that so many of us have a hard time taking the time to celebrate?

Today, I’m going to share with you three reasons why, and three ideas how we can conquer them.

 

  1. As my friend and colleague Nina Spencer writes in her book describing her experience climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, ‘Sometimes you can’t see the mountain when you’re already on the mountain.’ Which means, sometimes when you’re so busy doing what you’re doing, you’re not able to take that bird’s eye view and look at how far you’ve already come. It’s good to be focused on where you want to go, however also we need to celebrate where we’ve come from and all we’ve already accomplished.

 

  1. We’re really good at saying ‘I will celebrate when.’ When I get there, once I’ve done that, once I’ve reached that goal, or met the man, or had children… then, then, THEN I can celebrate. We’re always waiting for that next big milestone before we can celebrate, instead of recognizing we already have so much to celebrate, right where we are right here. So make sure you take the time to recognize that, celebrate that!

 

  1. Sometimes we get so caught up in looking around at what everyone else is doing, that all of a sudden our achievement or accomplishment doesn’t seem so great anymore. So be careful of that. Don’t compare where you are to someone else’s middle or even end game. If you’ve conquered an action, if you’ve done something you’ve set out to do, celebrate that! Don’t look at what everybody else is doing, it doesn’t matter! After all, they’re not on your journey.

 

So today I challenge you to find something to celebrate. And however you choose to do it, whether you get some balloons, or you get out a glass of your fave bevvy (don’t worry, it’s just water, I’m still working!) or you want to write out a celebrations list, do something to celebrate who you are and where you are right now.

This is actually something we do every Friday in The Tribe, and I’m excited to do that later on with them. I want you to stay tuned because on Monday I’m going to be sending out a very special invitation for you to join The Tribe.

It’s an amazing and powerful group where you get the accountability, the support, and the inspiration you need to continue to go after your dreams and make them happen. And furthermore, to live your biggest life!

So, it is celebration time!

Happy Friday, have a wonderful weekend, and if you have someone in your life who you think would benefit from this video, please share it with them!

And until next time, don’t forget to dream big, play big, and live big.

Carol

 

A living BIG little epiphany, insight, and invitation…

My week in pics: Good times with some amazing friends, lots o’ girls’ nights, and Ladies Who Brunch, speaking to a great group at the iaap Canadian Education Conference, making friends on my journey to Buenos Aires (including Cyndi!) and getting right back into life with the Remotes and enjoying some delish Argentinian meals…

A living BIG little epiphany, insight, and invitation…

Happy Friday!

And greetings from Buenos Aires!

That’s right, after a lovely (albeit busy!) two weeks at home, four airports, three flights, and 24 hours of travel time, my Remote Year journey continues!

After meeting some great people on the various flights, and making friends with Cyndi from United Customer Service, I had a powerful epiphany. And then an insight. And now I have an invitation.

Watch this week’s video to see what I’m taking about!

(transcript below)

So, are you ready to join the challenge?!? Let’s have some FUN together! Plus, after the five days, you’ll have a new-found spring in your step, a brighter smile on your face, and you’ll feel more alive than you have for a while.

REGISTER HERE.

(And, seeing as how it’s always more fun to do challenges with others, invite your friends and colleagues to take it on with you!)

Have a FAB week, *|FNAME|*!

Carol - high res

P.S. I want to hear how it’s going! Share your journey over at the blog or leave a comment over on my YouTube Channel! – and be sure to subscribe!

 

 

TRANSCRIPT:

Happy Friday!

I’m Carol Schulte, and welcome to another video edition of my Happy Friday blog.

And greetings from Buenos Aires, where I’m coming to you from my new apartment building.

I had a wonderful two weeks at home, and after four airports, three flights, and 24 hours of travel time, I’m back in South America and the Remote Year journey continues!

Today, I’d like to share with you an epiphany, an insight, and an invitation.

The last leg of my journey was out of Houston, and it was also going to be the longest leg of my journey, almost 10 hours. Now when I first checked in online, I wasn’t able to choose a seat for this flight. When I asked in Toronto, I was also out of luck, and was advised to ask at the gate. Apparently it had the code that meant the flight was overbooked.

Now I wasn’t so much worried I wouldn’t get on at all, although that could have been the case, I was more worried I would have a middle seat! And so I inquired at every part of my journey.

Finally, in Houston, as I was walking to my gate, I passed the Customer Service desk, and so I thought I may as well ask there.

For the first time ever, there was no one in line! It was my lucky day! However I also thought perhaps the ladies behind the desk were enjoying their peace and quiet. Well, I walked up to the first one who invited me up, and said ‘I’m sorry to disturb the peace, this must be an anomaly for you!’ To which she replied, ‘It’s the calm before the storm, just wait until the late night flights arrive…’

I acknowledged they must be used to complaints and screaming and upset customers, and let them know I hoped I’d be an easy one! I then proceeded to explain my situation and ask if there was any was I may be able to confirm my seat. I handed over my boarding pass, and she said, ‘Well someone’s already been looking out for you, as you do in fact have an assigned seat.’ Cheekily, I asked if it was a window. It was an aisle. Better than middle, absolutely, however I do love a good window seat… So I then said ‘Now I don’t want to push my luck, however any chance you may have a window available?’ She kindly looked into it, and said she did, however further back in the plane. So I had to choose from 41L, or 33K.

‘Which do you think has more of a chance of me sitting next to my Prince Charming?’ Wanting to get a laugh. And then she actually looked into which of the passengers that would be next to me were flying solo or with a group!

We enjoyed some fun banter back and forth, and then Cyndi, who I had learned her name to be, said ‘You know what? You’re such a nice woman I’m going to do better than that. I’m going to put you up to economy plus… a window and extra leg room.’ WOO HOO!

Now she didn’t have to do that. However it was very much appreciated. So I thanked her profusely, and proceeded to bring her a gift card from Starbucks. She was very surprised and thankful and said ‘You didn’t have to do that!’ to which I replied, ‘And neither did you!’

And in that moment, we shared a connection and an appreciation. It was a living BIG moment.

That was my epiphany. And the insight that followed, is that although I’m fortunate to be jet-setting and traveling and working remotely, and I’m sure some of you are thinking, wow, you’re so lucky, you’re really living big, I’ve come to discover that it actually doesn’t require a big adventure on the other side of the world to live big.

Sometimes it’s the small moments, the real moments, like the moment of connection and shared appreciation I shared with Cyndi, that can make a BIG difference.

And so here is the invitation.

Starting this coming Monday, June 5th, I’m doing a 5-day living big challenge.

5 days, 5 small ways to live just a little bit bigger. Every day, you’ll receive an email and a short video from me with an idea or action to take on that day.

Now these are not going to be just another item to add to your to-do list. They are going to be easy to implement, and FUN!

And after the five days, you’ll have a new-found spring in your step, a brighter smile of your face, and you’ll feel more alive than you have for a while.

So I hope you’ll join us!

AND, if you have someone in your life you think could benefit, please share this video with them, and invite them to take the challenge with you!

Until next time, I’m Carol Schulte, and don’t forget to dream big, play big, and live big!

Carol - high res

What is YOUR Living Big Hedgehog? (Watch this video to see what I mean!)

My week in pics: Having a fabulous time wine tasting in Mendoza, taking in the magic and beauty and splendour that are Iguazú Falls, getting SOAKING wet on the boat ride (that literally went under a part of the falls!) and visiting Las Tres Fronteras, the intersection of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay. 

 

What is YOUR Living Big Hedgehog? (Watch this video to see what I mean!)

 

Happy Friday!

And greetings from… My Dad’s house back in Canada!

Yes that’s right – after four flights, five airports, and over 24 hours later – I’m back on Canadian soil! And it’s pretty exciting, I have to say.

I’m home for almost two weeks, as I have two exciting conferences I will be speaking at, and a Women Living Big Habitat For Humanity build, plus lots of friends and family I’m pumped to be seeing!

However that’s not what this week’s video is about.

This past week I spent a few days in beautiful Iguazú, where I was able to take in the magic, the splendour, and the beauty that is Iguazú Falls. And then I visited Las Tres Fronteras, the point where three countries – Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay – meet at the interaction of the Iguazú River and the Paraná River.

It’s a pretty powerful place. And it got me thinking about the power of three, and moreover where they intersect.

Some deep thoughts in this video as I share about Jim Collins’ Hedgehog Concept, and moreover what my Living BIG Hedgehog concept would be! Watch this video to find out what I mean…

(transcript below!)

 

And now I want to hear from YOU! What would YOUR Living Big Hedgehog be? Please share your ideas in the comments below, or over on my YouTube Channel.

Let’s keep the conversation going! So please share your thoughts and ideas below.

Have a FAB week!

Carol - high res

 

 

 

P.S. Ready to live just a little bit BIGGER? Join me on our upcoming 5-day Living Big Challenge

 

TRANSCRIPT:

Happy Friday!

I’m Carol Schulte, and welcome to another video edition of my Happy Friday blog. Greetings from Puerto Iguazú, where I’ve been the last few days taking in the majesty, the wonder, the splendour, and the beauty that are Iguazú Falls.

One of the seven natural wonders of the world. And it’s no wonder, as they make up almost 3km of natural waterfalls. Just gorgeous.

And I’ve been looking at them from both the Argentinian side, where I am now, as well as the Brazilian side, which is actually just across the river. But where I’m coming to you from today is at Las Tres Fronteras, or the Triple Frontier. Which is a pretty important point, because it separates not only Argentina and Brazil, but also Paraguay, and at the intersection of the Iguazú River and the Paraná River is the pinnacle, or the border, frontier, triple frontier… where these countries connect and come together. It’s a pretty powerful place.

It got me thinking, where are there other ways, other places where we can look at the intersection of three things. No doubt you’ve heard of the Venn Diagram, and there are lots of famous concepts and theories that talk about the power of three, and moreover where they intersect. One of the more famous examples being Jim Collins’ Hedgehog Concept. He talks about this concept in his book, Good to Great.

Now, funny fact. How did it get its name, Hedgehog Concept? It’s based on an ancient Greek parable that looks at the fox and the hedgehog. The fox is always trying to get at the hedgehog. But no matter what he tries, what strategy he applies – pouncing, sneaking, playing dead – the hedgehog always wins. Why? Because the hedgehog is really good at one thing: defending himself. So the poor fox always ends up with a lot of needles in his nose!

Jim Collins expanded on this idea and works with individuals and organizations to figure out what is going to bring them the most success. And it’s based on three circles, three questions that he asks.

The first being ‘What are you the best in the world at? The second, ‘What are you most passionate about? What do you love to do?’ And the third, ‘What is going to fuel your economic engine?’

And where those three circles connect, where they intersect, is where your powerhouse is, where your power lies. It’s where you are going to enjoy the most success, and happiness.

So it got me thinking. Now I talk about this idea of living big, and so I thought about what my circles would be, what would my questions be, and where would they intersect. Because no doubt that is where I could live my biggest life. And this is what I’ve come up with:

 

1. What am I the most scared of? Or where will I be living at the edge of my comfort zone?
2. Where am I living the most authentically? According to my own values, passions, goals?
3. Where am I living with the most purpose, meaning? What do I want my legacy to be?

 

And where those three answers intersect, that is where I am going to be living my biggest life.

Now I know living big means different things to different people, so I’m curious: What would your circles be, and what questions would you want to ask, so that you would be living YOUR biggest life?

I want to hear from you. Let’s keep the conversation going! So please share your thoughts and ideas below.

And furthering this idea of living big, I have a 5-day Living Big Challenge coming up. Five days, five ways, five small actions that you can take to live even bigger. And I hope you’ll join us!

And please, if you know someone in your life who you think could benefit from this video, please share it with them!

Until next time, I’m Carol Schulte, and don’t forget to dream big, play big, and live big.

How to taste wine, how to taste life.

My week in pics: Visiting cute lake town Villa Carlos Paz (and indulging in wine and ice cream…) hosting ‘Cocktails & Conversations’ event, good times my last few days in Córdoba, first wine tasting here in Mendoza! 

How to taste wine, how to taste life.

 

Happy Friday!

It’s funny, I’m actually just noticing the theme of wine has been pretty prevalent in my past week’s events…

Over the weekend I took a day tip to ‘Villa Carlos Paz,’ a beautiful lake town in the Sierras, did a hike up to to this famous cross on the top of the hill, and enjoyed some delicious wine while sitting next to the lake afterwards.

On Sunday, I hosted a ‘Cocktails and Conversations’ event (or vino and vulnerability ~ as it was with wine!) where we got opened up on the concept of home and shared what we may be missing.

And now I’m writing to you from Mendoza, the famous wine region of Argentina, where I’m indulging in one of my fave things to do…  wine tasting.

Last night, while contemplating the complexities of the certain malbec I was sniffing, it occurred to me that how we taste wine could be (or dare I say should we) taste life.

Watch this week’s video to see what I mean!

(And again, you can also read the content if you prefer below.)

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This week, I challenge you to engage in all of your senses, honour your unique experiences, and enjoy the moments.

Let’s continue the conversation! Share your thoughts and comments below or on my YouTube channel.

Have a FAB week!
Carol - high res

 

 

P.S. As you know, I’m a self-professed lover of selfies… AND, I thought it high time I share  some of my selfie taking secrets with you! Sign up to receive ‘7 Steps to taking the Perfect, Shameless, Splendid Selfie!’ today!

 

TRANSCRIPT:

Happy Friday!

I’m Carol Schulte, and greetings from Mendoza, Argentina… otherwise known as wine country! And welcome to another video edition of my Happy Friday blog.

I arrived here yesterday, and wasted no time getting out of the city, and was at my first winery within a few hours.

It was a gorgeous winery, Kaiken, which means Wild Goose, and after a private wine tour of their gorgeous facility – one of the oldest in the region established in 1920 – I sat down to taste a flight of some of their most famous wines.

It’s one of my favourite things to do. Wine tasting.

And as I sat there, I realized how we taste wine could be (dare I say should we) taste life. Because I actually don’t think we often take the time to truly taste it. Hear me out, as I have three ideas I’d like to share with you.

 

1. Engage all of your senses.

Wine tasting is an in-depth, complicated, albeit enjoyable process. And it involves a lot of steps. First you have to look at the wine, observe the colour, the legs, take it all in. And then you have to smell the wine. A big part of the tasting is noticing the aromas before even getting it to your palette. And then of course, the tasting. Are you utilizing all of your senses to experience and enjoy life? Or are you so busy do, do, doing that you’re not taking the time to utilize all of your senses to fully experience it.

 

2. Honour your unique experience.

Your tasting is going to be different than the next person’s. We bring different palettes, different preferences, different experiences to the table. And so it is in life. And that’s good! Are you honouring your unique experiences, gifts, talents? Are you allowing your authenticity to shine through? As Anais Nin says, “We do not see the world as it is, we see it as we are.” Our unique experiences and way in which we see the world needs to be both honoured and celebrated.

 

3. Be present in, and enjoy the moment.

So you’ve heard me say this before, however I realized when I was in the moment enjoying each sip of each wine I tried, I was totally there. I wasn’t thinking about my to-do list, or what I was going to have for dinner, or my overflowing inbox. Now maybe it’s because I happen to love wine tasting, however I truly was in right the moment.

Imagine what our life would look like if we were fully in each moment, each experience as it happened, and really enjoying it?

 

So there you have it. Wine tasting can teach you about life tasting. Be sure to engage all of your senses, honour your unique experience, and be present enough to truly enjoy the moment.

I’d love to continue to conversation, so please share your thoughts and comments below.

And, if you know someone in your life who could benefit from this video, please share it with them!

Until next time, I’m Carol Schulte, and don’t forget to dream big, play big, and live big.

 

P.S. As you know, I’m a self-professed lover of selfies… AND, I thought it high time I share  some of my selfie taking secrets with you! Sign up to receive 7 Steps to taking the Perfect, Shameless, Splendid Selfie!’ today!