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Hey there, it’s Steve, also known as “the safari dude.” I recently had the pleasure of being a guest on the podcast “Technically Speaking,” which is all about helping business owners achieve a state of flow. I was invited to share my unique journey that led me to the life I’m living today.
The hosts, Austin and Taylorr, were fascinated by the artifacts from my travels throughout Africa that adorn my office. Each item has its own story, most of them from Africa itself. As a native of Minnesota, they were curious about how I ended up leading safaris throughout Africa.
I told them that I had never left the United States until the age of 39. I started a non-profit organization that aimed to unite East Central Minnesota in responding to global poverty. This work led me to Rwanda, where at the end of my humanitarian trip, people suggested that I go on a safari. Although hesitant at first, I eventually decided to go and quickly fell in love with the safari experience.
Since that first safari, I’ve gone on several others and have even started leading my own safaris. My love for the adventure and exploration that comes with being on a safari has led me to create my brand, “the safari dude.” As I transitioned from coaching and consulting to public speaking, I realized that my message of how to live life to the fullest aligned perfectly with the ethos of a safari. I encourage individuals to view life as an adventure and to make it epic.
My story is one of serendipity, as I never would have imagined that my journey would lead me to where I am today. It serves as a reminder that sometimes, the best things in life happen unexpectedly, and we must be open to embracing new opportunities when they arise.
In the podcast, we talked about my journey from the corporate world to finding myself and running my own business and non-profit. I shared that my pursuit of happiness was a result of both push and pull. I felt the pull to go in search of my best life, as I was living a good life but not my life. I was tired of doing math and felt that the programming aspect of my work was becoming a young person’s game. I had always wondered if I could work for myself, but I deferred that idea until my kids were grown and I had financial stability.
I admit that I didn’t know who I really was and wanted to explore my authentic self. My decision to leave the corporate world was a risk, but I had the push and pull energy in alignment. Although I knew I would take a hit in income, I was committed to finding my true self. My pursuit was not just for greater wealth, but for greater happiness as well. I had moments of anxiety towards the end of my career, and I realized that I did not want to go to work anymore.
My story is relatable to many individuals who may feel stuck in their current careers and may want to pursue something different. Sometimes, taking risks is necessary to find happiness and achieve a more fulfilling life. It’s never too late to explore your authentic self and take a leap of faith towards your best life.
We also talked about the key to happiness, which I believe is being aligned and connected to a greater purpose. Being part of something bigger than oneself, such as a vision, values, or mission, can create a sense of community and belonging that fosters happiness. On the other hand, being misaligned or disconnected can cause unhappiness.
I noted that many people are unhappy because they don’t really know who they are or what they want out of life. They have been burdened with defaults, expectations, and cultural conditioning that tell them what they should be doing with their lives. But true happiness and fulfillment come from living a life that is authentic to who you are, rather than trying to live up to someone else’s idea of who you should be. It’s important to take the time to explore your own desires, passions, and values, and then create a life that reflects them. This is the key to living a truly fulfilling life.
About The Author
Steve Fredlund is The Safari Dude. As a professional actuary in human resources analytics, he uncovered surprising factors that enhance employee engagement, and work enjoyment; key elements for effectiveness, enhanced retention, productivity, and organizational success.
Minnesota to Rwanda, nonprofit to corporate, start-ups to Fortune 500 companies he brings to your event thirty years of leadership success. Steve’s personal safari mission is to help great leaders and their teams enjoy an epic safari by getting the right peeps in their jeeps and in the right seats.