"The Azores has achieved EarthCheck Bronze Benchmark, with a goal of becoming a world-leading sustainable destination," the official announcement from EarthCheck reads. EarthCheck is the world’s leading scientific benchmarking certification and advisory group for travel and tourism, so this is a big deal.
MINUVIDA AZORES rejoices with the Azorean government and its "Green Team" for the great accomplishment. We are an official underwriter of the Azorean Sustainability Charter, the document that sets forth the types of initiatives that led to this award.
Awards and recognition are nice and all but the real proof is in what's happening on the ground. It's not just a shiny plaque or marketing speak.
At MINUNIDA AZORES we've made it our mission to promote responsible, sustainable travel. You're probably tired of hearing about how we serve only local and in-season products, encourage short showers, lights off, drinking from the faucet, etc., etc.
There's more to sustainability and responsible travel than a pretty picture of a wild beach.
But this stuff is important. Every single thingyou do has a potential impact.
We want comfort, we want choice, we want convenience, but are we aware of the impacts of our choices?
Back in our little corner we worry about mass tourism taking over. How can we remain authentic and pristine while making tourism a sustainable and viable economic engine?
For us, sustainility is our way, not a business model or marketing strategy. It's about being sustainble in all its facets, including supporting the local economy, paying fair wages, reusing and making things last longer (the traditional hospitality industry replaces every single appliance, piece of furniture, etc., on a schedule so everything always looks brand new). We encourage our visitors to engage in responsible, sustainable travel by providing immersive experiences with context, and yes, by telling them why that matters.
As hard as the Green Team is focusing on obtaining the Silver Certification in October let's focus harder on being truly responsible and sustainable travelers.
So, join us in our little revolution. Let travel be a journey of (self) discovery.
Typical day in the life of mindful business leader: Get a full 8 hours of sleep a night. Harvest ripe fruit from the trees and pick greens from the earth. Eat three wholesome meals a day (none of which are in front of a screen or in a to go container). Meditate and/ journal and practice yoga once a day. Spend more time outside in nature than inside. Live your soul’s purpose.
Does that sound like any of the successful business owners you know? Well it’s MY life.
What if I told you I’m making 1/10th of what I made in my high flying corporate job five years ago?
I’m grateful for my past life as a corporate exec. It enabled me to save and invest so I could live my soul’s purpose and run a lodge and retreat center in the Azores islands. Many of us spend our entire lives saving up for retirement, or maybe we have plans to do something big.
But somehow we forget what we’re striving for. We simply strive for more, bigger, better. But how much is enough?
Do you feel successful? What is your definition of success?
I now understand there are many definitions of success and mine is not just about profit margin and growth.
Read my definition of success and tell me what is yours, and check out our current specials to embark on a journey of self discovery!
Get 7-8 hours of sleep per night. There is a plethora of research on this and if you’re not getting enough sleep (and no you’re not one of those people that only needs 5-6 hours) then WAKE UP!
Eat three wholesome meals a day, none of which are in front of a screen. We need to be relaxed in order to digest and absorb nutrients to fuel our body and mind. If you’re stimulating yourself while eating (looking at your phone, watching TV or driving), you’re unable to properly absorb the food you’re eating.
Have a good poop at least once a day. Your digestion is the first to go when you’re under chronic stress and stimulation. You need to be relaxed for your body to digest and absorb nutrients, and also function properly to eliminate waste. If you’re not pooping once a day look at where you’re overstressed and overstimulated. It’s not just about what you eat.
Connect daily to my soul. I start each day with some form of “daily connection”. This can be meditation or yoga, singing, bollywood dancing (yep!) or just breathing. How do you know who you are and where you’re called to be if you don’t connect with yourself, and on a regular basis?
Spend more time doing what I love and want to do vs. what I have to do. Are you in charge of your life or are you constantly reacting to demands placed on you? I choose where I exert my energy and time. You can’t be all things to all people so choose wisely. This has in turn given me more time to focus on my soul’s purpose.
Directly impact the wellbeing of my community. When I’m successful it means our team and partners succeed, which leads to another exponential set of good things happening. Success breeds success, who does your success directly impact?
Run a profitable business that enables me to do all of the above. And yes we run a profitable business. So, stay tuned for Part II…