Updated: Aug 8
It is with pride and joy I present to you the 25th member of Team Do Good, the mighty Curtis Carlin. I am absolutely thrilled to have the opportunity to celebrate Curtis here via Tampa Bless and Team Do Good. His willingness to participate in this feature is highly appreciated. And now, without further ado...
Name: Curtis Carlin
Place of birth: Joplin, MO
Currently reside: South Tampa
Heritage: Red, White, and Blue American
Family: Mitzi, wife of 27 yrs, daughters Alicia (24) and Samantha (23); sons John (21) and Nicholas (20); son-in-law Zach (25) and 2 grandchildren Mary Catherine (2) and Charlotte (1)
Alma Mater: University of Florida and 3 decades in the Marine Corps
Occupation: Co-owner of Steps2Thrive in Health, LLC, an Optimal Health and Transformational Leadership wellness practice, retired Colonel US Marine Corps (1991-2020)
Activities you organized or participate in related to helping others and uplifting humanity?
3 key focus areas I hope inspire and uplift others:
1 - Engaged husband, father, and poppo (grandfather)
2 - Health and Transformational Leadership Coach
3 - Feeding the homeless/underserved.
I have spent my entire adult life focused on serving others and our country, but I never lost focus on my need to show up on my God-given role of being the best husband and father I can be. As I’ve transitioned out of the Marine Corps, I now absolutely LOVE helping others achieve new levels of health and inner transformation which allows them to show up as a better version of themselves and treat their most divine creation (the body) appropriately. Over the past 5 years, my whole family has also been deeply involved with Thankfully Helping Others' Real Needs (THORN) which is a ground-roots, hands-on ministry to feed the homeless here in Tampa.
The Tampa Bless 12
1) Favorite pastime or hobby? Why? Please explain.
Favorite hobby is golf… such a humbling game but I need only one good shot in a round to make me desire to play again! My favorite pastime now is being Poppo (grandfather) for my granddaughters. They are the smartest babies EVER, and I love my role as a supportive grandparent to wonderful parents.
2) Favorite sport, team, or player? If not into sports, your favorite musician or album? Or answer one of each if you’d like or any combo. Please explain why for any one or more of the questions you answered.
This one is easy… I’m a die-hard Florida Gator! Mitzi and I graduated from there, and all our kids have been raised to bleed Orange and Blue. Some of our most fond family moments are sharing in the exhilaration of big wins or tough losses.
3) Favorite movie? Why? Please explain.
So many great movies, but I’ll choose Gettysburg. This Civil War movie and the story of Colonel Joshua Chamberlain on Little Round Top inspired me to be a better Marine Officer and servant leader. Chamberlain, a strong Christian, was an ordinary citizen who stepped up when his country needed him. In his most pivotal moment, when his men were exhausted and out of ammunition, he ordered them to “fix bayonets” and charge down the hill at the Confederates. In my opinion, his actions clearly saved the battle that day and potentially prevented Washington DC and the Union from falling. This reminds me to never underestimate the impact of one courageous action I could take, and I challenge this to others.
4) Favorite place (country, city, town, etc…) you have visited and why?
Another challenging question as I’ve traveled to many incredible areas around the world. I would probably say Rome, Italy, because I’m a convert to Catholicism. During my first trip to Rome, the Vatican and Peter’s Tomb solidified in me the foundations of what is now MY Catholic Faith. I am from Missouri (Show Me State) and Matthew 16:18 makes it clear for me! I professed my faith and received the Sacrament of Confirmation 8 years ago.
5) Last meal? You could have anything, what is it? Why? Please explain.
I’ve really tried to shift my thinking away from food as something pleasure based to food being fuel for my body. However, I probably would desire an awesome breakfast spread to include my wife’s very tasty French toast!
6) Three activities or routines you would highly recommend? Please explain your reasoning for each.
1. Set your first and last hours of the day - I’ve recently started being very purposeful when I first wake up. I drink a substantial glass of water, eat what I call a fueling (small meal), and then do my faith-based readings which help me set my mindset for the day. In the evening, I get a last stroll around the neighborhood, turn off electronics (none in the bedroom), and reflect in bed while taking deep, cleansing breaths. I sleep so much more soundly now and wake refreshed.
2. Date your children - I’ve tried to be consistent and it can be hard at times, but over the years I’ve ensured to spend time with my children in special/unique ways to deepen our relationship. From very young ages until now as young adults, my desire is to cultivate opportunities for meaningful conversation. My hope is for my children to bring home a wonderful spouse. So far, we are 1-for-1!
3. If you have children - Be sure your spouse gets your attention before anyone else. To this day, I kiss my wife first whenever I see her. I believe it’s a small but important example to your children and even grandchildren. If you keep your spouse at the center of your family dynamic, your children will grow up witnessing the core of strong families and feel the ongoing and overflowing love. With that as their base, they will most likely seek that type of love in their own marriage.
7) A) Personality trait you highly value? Why? Please explain. B) The personality trait you highly dislike? Why? Please explain.
A. Being Humble. I find I’m most attracted to humble, giving leaders who walk and talk softly yet live a significant life. By significant I mean those who help others achieve their successes.
B. Vanity. This is one that shows up in so many ways and one I struggle with at different times in my own life. Vanity ties to pride and is at the root of so much sin in thoughts and actions. You can find yourself being “stroked” on all your accomplishments when in fact, everything is from God’s gifts and through the hard work of so many others supporting you.
8) Favorite thinker (author, philosopher, theologian, etc…)? Why? Please explain. And what is your favorite piece of advice, quote, or text from them or in general? Why? Please explain.
Recently, I’ve become a big fan of John Maxwell. He’s a pinnacle leader who connects in a very authentic way to help people strive to live their best life. One quote: “A man must be big enough to admit his mistakes, smart enough to profit from them, and strong enough to correct them.” This challenges me often!
9) Biggest influence in your life or a top one, and what was it about them that really stood out?
My parents obviously instilled a level of drive and discipline which helped me be an accomplished Marine; however, I believe my wife, Mitzi, is the biggest influence in my life. She has shaped, molded, and supported me into the man I am today through her example of incredible generosity and selfless acts of service. She lives an enriching and lively faith and loves me unconditionally. She also does not hesitate to call me out directly when needed!
10) If there is one thing you could change in the world, what would it be?
Never inventing smartphones! They have exploited the breakdown of the basic family by enabling the spread of more division and polarization and relieving parents of their duties to be engaged. Smartphones and “social media” have addicted so many of the youth and adults to constant stimulation and noise versus being present in the moment for real, lasting human connections.
11) Where did your desire to help others and uplift humanity come from? Please explain.
We have a family motto of “Do Something” - Ephesians 2:10. I believe in the compound effect, and we look for small or big actions we can take in our own backyard. I’ve spent many years of my adult life in faraway countries, seen some tough things, and realized through all the sacrifices I make overseas that I should be even more willing to sacrifice for my fellow neighbors and Americans down the street. I refuse to think someone else will “take care of it” when I might be the one who can best make the difference.
12) What are you working on now and how can people get involved?
I have two large passions right now. First, helping feed and show dignity without judgment to our homeless and underserved. Being on the street, looking people in the eye, and just helping as I can means so much to all involved. We are always in need of food, clothes, hygiene items, and volunteers to participate. If interested, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Secondly, I have transitioned out of the Corps and now love helping people rediscover how amazing their own bodies, minds, and relationships can be again. Most people are not healthy in body, mind, or finances; thousands if not millions are sleepwalking through life and reacting to sickness instead of creating health. DO NOT ACCEPT the concept of mediocrity. Good enough is really just not okay. My wife and I come alongside people who desire change in their bodies, to awaken their minds, to heal their relationships, and to create more abundant finances. We have the privilege to awaken them to how great they can feel and BE again. We have so many eye-watering stories of transformation, and this success sets fire to our mission for clients to show up as better spouses, parents, and citizens.
Thank you so much for your time Curtis and for all that you do. The place we live in is that much better because of you. I hope that this feature has served to inspire you, as well as successfully celebrate those that help others and uplift humanity.
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