Life Lessons Learned on the Safari

For the past week- I’ve been adventuring my way through South Africa. Many of you have asked what made me want to travel to South Africa- honestly the opportunity presented itself (in the form of silent auction that I won) and I took it! I’ve always wanted to go to South Africa. The fact that I have never been  coupled with all the wonderful things I have heard from many of my friends and fellow SHiFTrs attracted me to this far away destination.

At the same time traveling seventeen hours half way around the world was overwhelming. I’ve been pushing off my bucket list trip for many reasons and ones that we can all relate to; my kid(s) need me, it’s too busy at work, I don’t have the time. I finally made the decision, it’s now or never. Let’s go! As the trip approached I was thinking YIKES!! What was I thinking! South Africa?? I think I need shots? Who’s gonna watch Karsten? What about SHiFT? And before I knew it I had a laundry list of reasons why I shouldn’t go. Here I was complaining about an amazing opportunity, a dream of mine coming true! How many times have we complained about an experience that someone else might never get to have? I took a step back and realized that it all works out in the end. I know I’ve got an amazing team personally and professionally- I need to trust what I’ve created.

Trusting what I love too! I love to travel and since I was a young kid I’ve always traveled. Being on a plane isn’t a new thing; plane trips to Europe, California, multi day-road trips across the USA and day trips in our backyard. Doesn’t matter where we go- I have a passion for travel. I associate travel with life.

I realized on this very epic journey, that We spend much of  our days fragmented; running from one place to another. Between work, family, friends, community, church and million other commitments we are being pulled in numerous directions. We seek vacations and adventures because its these experiences that don’t just elevate us, but help put us back together. It’s there that we challenge ourselves, learn about our selves nd often time have those “ah ha” moments. Lessons are everywhere- we need to be open to them.

My adventure to thru South African was beyond amazing.

I spent the first three days on Safari at Zulu Nyala. Imagine having giraffes, rhinos, zebras, elephants, wort hogs, hippos, cheetahs, monkeys and many other exotic animals in your back yard except the yard was 15,000 acres. You’re literally five feet from these awe inspiring animals. Watching the giraffes strut across the road- with their heads held high, they demonstrated this confident vibe. Immediately I saw the parallel in life; when we walk thru life- we need to hold our heads up high and have the confidence to look forward to where we are going. Checking out the Zebras as they stick together and help each other in a tribe. As with our SHiFT Family, the front of the house, Instructors and Marketing team work together to help change peoples lives.

30 minutes outside of Zulu Nayla is another private game reserve; more land, different animals – here you’re searching for the animals. So here we are in a ten-person LandRover along with a Safari Driver and “Game Spotter”. For the next 4 hours we drove thru the reserve on the hunt to see Lions, Elephants, Cheetah’s and their baby cubs and host of other animals. The driver with his machete- hacking down the branches are making his own path thru African Brush. The difference here is that we were observe these wild creates in their environment.

In our life it’s not a bad thing to sit back and watch, observe and learn. We don’t always need to be on the hunt. Creating a balance between the two is creating harmony in life.

I’ve been blessed to have some pretty cool experiences… However, standing in middle of 67 Thousand Acres watching elephants effortlessly quietly and gracefully move across the land, was one of the most profound “ah ha” moments of my life. I need to stop, open my eyes and appreciate what I have in this moment. Live in the moment; breath in the air, the people, the sights and the sounds because before we know it the moments will be gone. We get caught up in the details and the drama. Step back and look at the big picture. Standing there-tears came down eyes and I took note that this was a once-in- a life time opportunity and as with my life- it’s a one in a life time chance to live it to its fullest and take in every moment.

As I hoped and knew it would would be, my  African Safari experience was off the charts. Adventures are the things you don’t usually do. I encourage you to step off of what you know- the secure surfaces we where spend most of our lives – and forage ahead into the woods -the unfamiliar area that is right around the corner!

The reality is, you’ll never remember your best day on the internet. You’ll remember the best experiences, the sights, sounds, tastes and the incredible people you met on the way.  It’s those adventures what are a book mark into your heart . . .and it’s there that we SHiFT the fragmented pieces back together.