Introducing grateful and grounded Richard Carmichael who named his food company just as he is.
Grounded Pantry (@groundedpantry) offers a variety of whole grain goodness for anyone who enjoys delicious, locally grown, organic food, such as soups, bread, pasta, and other seasonal items.
And rightfully so, Richard’s work ethic is all about adaptability, resilience, and listening to his gut instincts. Believing what he does. Loving what he does. Appreciating and being grateful for all that surrounds him. This way of life does not include taking shortcuts. Yes, that means you gotta take the stairs!
Thank you, Richard, for sharing your beautiful wisdom in my book Get Up when you answered the question:
WHAT WOULD YOU TELL YOUR TEENAGE SELF?
And of course, thank you for answering the other questions that followed below, as I couldn’t just stop at one. 😉
Not with advice like this.
Who is Richard Carmichael?
Oh my, I am still trying to figure that out. Father. Urban Gardener. Chef. Entrepreneur. Environmental Activist. Chief Bottle Washer. Student and teacher. Always learning.
How was Grounded Pantry born?
I have been playing around in the kitchen since I was 4. All throughout my life I found myself living, working around, and enjoying great food. When it came time to evolve my career into something that better aligned with who I was as a person, it seemed natural to me to gravitate toward food. Healthy, wholesome, nutritious, and delicious food. This is how I raised my kids—it’s in my veins. I just had to take one look at where I spent the most amount of my free time and there it was. In the Kitchen.
Of all the products you sell, which one taught you the most lessons and why?
Soup. There are a million and one ways to make it, but those that love it, love it a lot. There are so many ways to please and disappoint the soup crowd. Vegan Soups. Gluten-free soups. Dairy-free soups. Soups with no onions or garlic. Soups with meat or beans. Mushroom soups with butter and cream and some without. Spicy soups. Aromatic soups. Simple soups. Complex soups. I am always learning new ways to thrill and excite soup lovers with something new while also being mindful of the people that love things a certain way.
Which product is a best seller?
Vegan Soups. All of my soups are popular but some sell more than others. The vegan soups sell out first. Every time. I am not a vegan, but I am obviously doing something right for the Vegans to be so happy that they come back for more and more.
Grateful and grounded Richard, what is your typical day like?
Long. Not that glamorous. 3 or 4 pots on the stove at all times. Lots of slicing, dicing, chopping, roasting, barbequing, braising, simmering, cleaning up, and pot washing. Endless.
List the lessons you have learned from being a dad.
- You will never fit your kids into your life. Life gets easier and a lot more rewarding when you instead try to fit yourself into the lives of your kids.
- Find ways to be there for them. To guide them, nurture them, do the things they can not do for themselves, and encourage them to take on the things they can.
- Give them room to make their own mistakes. Provide and enforce boundaries for them.
- Challenge them. Take them outside. Let them explore.
- Love them with everything you have and let them know that you love them. Often. If you get this right, the rest will flow naturally.
Let’s unpack your quote: Please elaborate on the following.
“Seek out ways you can add your greatest value and be your best self. Always. Because that is what the world needs from you. Nothing good ever comes from looking for the easiest way through. Take the stairs.”
It always amazes me the places you go and the people you meet and the things that happen when you take the road less traveled. Putting yourself out there, into the unknown, for many people sounds daunting, difficult, and uncomfortable. It can be, but it also creates opportunities to really discover who you are and what you are made of.
If self-actualization is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, then seeking the path of least resistance seems like the fastest way to get to where you want to go.
But in reality, it is the places that are unknown, outside of our comfort zone that present us with the greatest opportunities to discover things that challenge us, make us uncomfortable, adapt and grow into our new surroundings, and ultimately reveal ourselves.
It is only once we get a firm grip on who we are, what makes us tick, what makes us happy and what doesn’t, that we can make a meaningful connection to the people and the world around us and contribute something of value and provide the greatest benefit to the world that we live in.
Take the stairs. It’s harder, but it’s worth it.
The grateful and grounded Richard Carmichael carries the title of mentor way beyond his love for creating delicious things in his kitchen. Take the path that looks exciting – even though it may be scary and unfamiliar. Enjoy the ride – even though you may need a seat belt. Take the stairs – even though the elevator is easier, your body and mind will thank you. Aren’t we lucky that his words of wisdom were published for all the world to read and reflect upon?