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Welcome to my blog!

To celebrate the release of my book, Running the World: Marathon Memoirs from the Seven Continents, I’m starting a blog!

Running the World chronicles my journey of running marathons on all seven continents. Through inspirational stories and photos, you’ll travel around the world, run alongside me, and get the inside scoop on my journey toward living an authentic life.

Who's this crazy person who ran a marathon on all seven continents?!

I’m Melissa Corley Carter, a.k.a. The Barefoot Dancing Rocket Scientist. I actually am a rocket scientist and an Air Force officer turned writer, artist, leadership coach, and resilience champion.

In all honesty, I’ve always been a writer and an artist. I just didn’t realize those elements would become an integral part of my life’s work.

After my 20-year dream to become an astronaut was shattered, I eventually rediscovered my true purpose: to build grounded leaders, connected humans, and powerful teams that change the world.

What does that mean?

I work with what you might call “traditional” high achievers who’ve lost their spark, who feel like they were meant for more but aren’t sure what, or who want to make a difference in the world but aren’t sure how.

Does that sound like you?

I’d love to inspire you to discover a renewed sense of purpose, joy, and zest for life so you can make your highest contribution to the world.

Here's the secret: It's not about what you do. It's about being you.

When you redefine success for yourself and live into your fullest potential, you become an authentic high achiever. That doesn’t mean doing all the things and going a thousand miles a minute doing them. It means bringing being into the picture. It means taking all that energy you’ve been using to live up to others’ expectations and redirecting it into following your own path.

As an authentic high achiever, you can listen to your own inner wisdom, access your own inner power, and live in alignment with who you really are.

Why does that matter?

Far from being frivolous or self-indulgent, you living your most joyful and zestful life is what the world deeply needs.

Albert Einstein is often quoted as saying, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used to create them.” If we’re going to create innovative solutions to the many challenges facing our world today, we need to evolve and quantum leap our creativity and collaboration. We can’t do that if we’re holding ourselves back and feeling stifled by the expectations of others or by the way things have been done before.

Our next-level creativity will emerge from the energy of more and more people being passionately and authentically themselves. That means you being who you really are, not who society says you should be.

Take it from Thor’s mom in Avengers: Endgame: “Everyone fails at who they’re supposed to be, Thor. The measure of a person, of a hero, is how well they succeed at being who they are.”

I invite you to be your own hero. I invite you to be who you are.


Want more? Sign up below the comments to receive weekly inspiration!

Each week I share a photo from Running the World with a brief inspirational message to contemplate. Use it as a journal prompt, conversation topic, brief pause in the rush of everyday life, or whatever works for you!

Here’s a sample:

Continent: Oceania

Location: Port Douglas, Australia


Are you arguing with reality? Wishing people or situations were other than they are? Wishing you were somewhere else in life? The tree doesn’t argue with the wind, but plants its roots deep and lets its branches bend and flow. Acceptance doesn’t mean you have to tolerate unhealthy relationships or circumstances. It doesn’t mean you don’t set goals and work to achieve them. But in order to create change, we need to start where we actually are, not where we wish we were. Grounding in reality gives us an actionable way forward through the inevitable winds of life. By all means dream bigger than you think is possible. Plant your roots deep in who you are, accept where you are, then take a small, manageable step toward the vision of where you want to be.


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I’m definitely learning how to plant my roots deeper and simply enjoy the feeling of the wind has it been to me in every direction. Enjoyed this!

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Fantastic, so glad it resonated! Plant those roots and feel the wind! :)

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