Travels and Lessons Learned From Minnesota and The Late Prince

Sooo…it’s the final countdown. My doctor says my days of jet setting around the country must come to an end. I’m getting bigger by the day and although I feel fine, the last thing I want to do is go into early labor in a city that is not my own. I trust the experts and I’m getting my mind and heart prepared for life without wings…at least for a little while! 🙂

Travel is a big part of my lifestyle. Today, I thought I would share my latest excursion to the twin cities in Minnesota where I met the most amazing women. Through their stories, I learned that although we may share many differences, it is our commonality that unites us. I also had a priceless opportunity to visit Paisley Park, the home of the late Prince just weeks after his untimely death. This trip taught me about life and about relishing relationships.

I’ll admit, pregnancy makes you sentimental. I travel pretty frequently but this time it was different. I’m only a few short weeks away from a new life. The next time, I fly I’m sure my focus will be less on my belly and more on my baby. How will he or she will handle travel? What will it feel like to leave your child behind for the first time?  These thoughts are for a later time.

This trip, I had had an amazing opportunity to connect with women from all over the country with various backgrounds and experiences with one common goal…to live their greatest life. We were brought together through the Brand Leadership Institute, an online e-learning experience for women to advance in life and career. I came to Minnesota to hear their stories. We interviewed each of them and video taped them for a highlight reel of their success and stories. Although I was a bit tired from the long travel, I was immediately energized by their presence. I was thankful for the opportunity to connect with women just like me, working women, strivers, believers, moms, mentors and women who are working hard everyday to be true to their authentic self.




We all have our own insecurities but there is something powerful that happens in the presence of like-minded people. These women whom I have coached for the past several months gave me strength and exchanged motherly advise as we shared in the excitement of our potential and our future. I left feeling empowered and encouraged. “You change lives Melissa. You change lives,” one of them said to me. Tears came to my eyes as I realized that my life has meaning and that it is making a difference to women all around the world.

I left our day of recording on a high. We decided to travel to Paisley Park, about 40 minutes away to visit the home of the late Prince. It’s hard to believe that he passed away just a few short weeks ago.

I was in awe of all the memorial and people who had come from all around the world to pay their respects to him and his family. Although, I was not a die-hard Prince fan, I had great respect and admiration for someone who used his gifts and talents to touch the world.  He did it his way and he gave to others along the way.

It challenged me to think about how many times I have hid my light because I didn’t want to disappoint someone else. It made me resolve to do it my way and to give every drop I have to my passion and commit to bring others along.

Beyond grief, I experienced a deeper desire to go hard after my dreams and to do it relentlessly without holding back. I believe you desire to live a life without regrets. Isn’t it time you did it your way? Isn’t it time you stepped out of the shadows and started living your life like there is no tomorrow?

I wanted to share these lessons and reflections from my journey. Thanks Minnesota for giving me more than airline miles, you gave me something to live up to and you helped expand my world!