Mary Crafts Inc. Founder Mary Crafts

Transcript

​​Mary Crafts is a living example of the transformational power of fearlessness. After graduating from high school in 1971, Crafts had limited options for economic stability. Faced with the possibility of welfare and the need to keep her children with her, Crafts began establishing a small catering business.

Now, her business has grown into a world-class catering company, Culinary Crafts, run by her children, catering to Presidents, world leaders, and high-level executives. After 50 years of living in fear—fear of failure, fear of being laughed at, and fear of not having the right clothes—Crafts experienced an epiphany when she looked at photos of herself on her 50th birthday and saw how fear had taken a toll on her body and health.

Recognizing that she had to take steps to overcome this fear, she took an action plan to her Post-It note, asking, "What would you do today if you were no longer afraid?" Through this practice, Crafts began to set goals she had previously thought were unattainable. For example, she had always admired the mountain of Timpanogos but feared she would never succeed in climbing it. She overcame this fear and successfully reached the summit.

In the same way, she set her sights on a more significant challenge — Mt. Kilimanjaro. Determined to prove to herself and her family that she and they were capable of incredible feats, she trained hard for six months. In September 2019, she flew to Paris and Tanzania to embark on her Mt. Kilimanjaro journey.

Fearing she didn't have the proper gear or enough experience, she arrived at the base camp with her 55-pound backpack and only the eight team members she had met online for support. While her teammates were experienced climbers with numerous summits already under their belt, she was the "outsider." However, the lead guide, Big John, was a natural source of comfort and assurance.

Big John instructed her to eat and drink no matter if she didn't feel like it since stopping for more than five minutes could lead to hypothermia. He taught her the importance of trusting him since he'd summited Kilimanjaro 166 times. And with body heat-inducing jackets and hand-warmers, Big John made the last stretch of the climb possible. Finally, after 14 exhausting hours of climbing, Crafts stood on the highest point in Africa and saw the sunrise.

After weeks of fear, uncertainty, and doubt, Crafts had accomplished her goal. By conquering her fear and the mountain, she had created the firm resolve she needed to embark on the next phase of her transformation — the rebranding of her company CulinaryCrafts. Crafts rebranding of the company focused on empowering employees to live a love-based life instead of a fear-based one. Crafts believed that, while her actions were the same, their motivation should focus on serving clients out of love rather than fear.

This transformation in mindset was made clear to one client who said they would never forget how he felt when Crafts and the team catered to his event. Crafts' message to business owners is clear: replace fear with love to unleash the vast potential within any organization. Her book, Unbounded: From Sorrow to Summit, which will hit the shelves in the winter of this year, will focus on how she's used this practice to transform her business.

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