Caroline is an Australian Television Presenter & Producer, Adventure Addict and once upon a time, Miss Australia… who spends much of her life either in front or behind the camera creating travel, adventure and action sports programming. Above all else, her soul sings for adventure, and she is currently developing her own television series and a brand called ‘MissAdventure’ which aims to inspire people into the outdoors and the exhilarating world of action sports. But, Caroline didn’t start here; please see her interview below to learn where her true aspirations came from.
Q. Where does your inspiration come from? Who inspired you to dream?
It’s a weird story, it certainly wasn’t something I put myself forward for. I think the world has a unique way in putting you in a place where you need to be and where you can be the most use to the world. I believe that, things happen for a reason. I grew up a tomboy in a very adventurous family. My dad was an athlete; my mom skydived in the 70s. My first international traveling experience was to Mt. Everest to support my brother, Rex. I was 19 and he was 21. He was the youngest Australian to summit Mt. Everest. He was the first person to teach me the power of dreams. He told my family at the age of 18 that he wanted to be the youngest Australian to climb Mt. Everest. And no one told him that it was a terrible idea. Everyone went, “well that’s interesting, how will you do it.” In my family, no one was beaten down to have crazy wild dreams. My family told him that we don’t have the means to help you so if you want to do this, you’ll have to come up with the money yourself. Through that, Rex learned a lot on raising funds & discovered sponsorships, fundraising, and all. He went on this journey and raised $100K his first trip. He was only 19 years old at the time. Watching him as his base camp manager at the bottom of Mt. Everest for 6 weeks really showed me and taught me the power of dreams and the importance of having a goal and that if you are relentless, you will figure it out. You’ll be able to achieve it. After spending 6 weeks at Mt. Everest and he summited it, I will never forget what he said to me after I asked him, “How was it standing on the summit?”, He said, “It wasn’t standing on the summit that got me, I wasn’t just looking at the mountain that I just climb, I looked at all the other mountains that are still waiting to be climb. I wasn’t looking at the goal I achieved, all the other goals waiting to be achieved.”
(Photo Credit: TIM THATCHER)
Q. What was your first big dream?
I was 19, I was seeing the world for the first time. I thought I had it big, traveling the world so young, seeing my brother climb the summit of Mt. Everest. But, that wasn’t just it. I fell in love with this group of people, the local crew of Mt. Everest called the Sherpas. They were so nice; they were ninjas. While I was there, I would get really cold all the time. I was sitting at base camp and it was -20 degrees. And these people would offer their warm water bottles to put in my sleeping bag to keep me warm. Take it in mind that at that elevation, it would take hours to boil water and to keep it warm. And, these people had nothing and coming from Sydney one of the wealthiest cities in the world, we weren’t super wealthy, but I had everything I needed. Nevertheless, for the first time at age 19, I saw the generosity of heart people had although they didn’t have anything. All of a sudden, I thought, I will support the Sherpas, I will change the world, and I will raise so much money. I was young enough to believe it was as easy as it sounded.
Q. What was your plan to help the Sherpas people?
I came home and I was working to pay off my trip as a receptionist at this business in the city and as I was doing that, I was selling chocolates to fundraise money to help the Sherpas. I was raising about $200-$300 every now and then. And, I was starting to think that I am not getting anywhere. During that same time, I was with a modeling agency through school and I was the worst model you can ever imagine. I would never go to castings. I was super academic. I was this cool traveler and thought I don’t need this. But, I needed money and my agency called and told me that if I didn’t go to this next casting call, I would be off the books because if I didn’t make money, they wouldn’t make any money off of me. So, the next casting was for Miss Australia. I came in the room and I said to the person, I am really flattered, but this is just not for me. She then said, “over the past 10 years we raised over $10M for charity. Do you have a charity that you support?” And I was like, well “Yes.” She went on to say, “The thing is this pageant gives you so much leverage. You walk in as Caroline Pemberton and won’t get a call for any donations to save yourself because your no one, but if you walk in as a Miss Australian finalist you have leverage”, so she said get involved.
Q. Take us on your journey to becoming Miss Australia.
Long story short, I didn’t do it the first year, but I did it the next year. I didn’t tell anyone, not my friends, not anyone at school because I was so shy. I was tomboy; I didn’t wear bikinis. I started raising so much money for my organizations. I thought I would have been knocked out early on, but I didn’t. I got to regionals then state finals, and then the media knew about it. And I was like, “I am in now and I can’t bail.” By that time, all of the weakest girls left, the girls that were competing with me were all smart, beautiful, caring, and really was doing something.
Q. What did you learn as Miss Australia?
I learned that if I had done nothing, nothing would have happened but I had a opportunity, I seized it and during that year I went for it all. I went to Kenya and worked with doctors at a medical camp, eating 1 meal a day, I love doing grassroots humanitarian work and have volunteered in Uganda, on the Sudanese border, in Kenya & Timor Leste.
I believe that, when you have a platform as big as Miss Australia, it would be irresponsible for not using it for the greater good of helping and saving people.
Q. What advice do you have for other dreamers?
1. Say YES to opportunity even if you think it might not be totally in the within your own idea of yourself.
2. Spend a lot of time imagining and in visualizing. It activates the same sense of reality in your brain. Imagination and reality works in the same level of your brain. Your brain cannot distinguish it.
3. Be unapologetic. When you were two years old, you would be assertive, you know what you wanted and say what you wanted. For some reason, society has a way of teaching us that it’s not ok saying what we want and we all try to fit into this particular role. Be relentless and do what you want. You have to just back yourself. You don’t have to fit in to the mold and status quo.
4. Choose to Live Life today. “Don’t put off things on the mindset that you can buy yourself time to do it later.” For example, saying, “If I work this really good job and make really good money, I can travel.” But, what happens is you would want to get a promotion to make more money to travel more, but you won’t be able to get off this rat race of working so hard to take the time off for your vacation because you think you would buy yourself time later.
5. Morning Aspirations. Every morning I make three choices when I wake up. These are very personal, very intimate choices, three things that I want to be accountable for. You can make these choices too. Think of morning aspirations to repeat yourself and say, “I choose to…” Everything will start to align because you’re so focused. So, when your brain get’s bored because you’re standing at line in a bank, your affirmations you said to yourself will go on repeat. Dreaming feels good. Sometimes by dreaming, you’re technically already living your dream.
6. Stop comparing yourself to others especially on social media. We can be more productive if we put some aspirations and dreams on repeat versus comparing ourselves. We waste time and energy comparing. It is useless and distracting.
Q. What are you currently working on?
Caroline is currently working on a series that inspires people to live their dreams and get off their digital dependency and get out there in the world. Getting device addicts to log off and dream. For more information visit Caroline’s website – http://www.carolinepemberton.com/
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