Three Minute Squiz With… Turia Pitt

Turia Pitt is one of the most impressive women in Australia. An inspiration to thousands, the author, athlete, adventurer, motivational speaker and life coach just seems to have life nailed. She may have been caught in a bushfire during an ultramarathon in 2011, but it’s easily the least interesting thing about her. She’s walked Kokoda, done two Iron Mans: here she tackles the Three Minute Squiz.

Where were you born? And dare we ask what year?
1987 – Mamao Hospital in the town of Faa’a on the island of Tahiti. Mum was 19 and Dad was 24.

What was the first album you ever bought?
I remember my dad bought me the Chemical Brothers album when I was 10yo. I thought it was weird and at the time would’ve far preferred Spice Girls!

What’s your go-to karaoke song?
Toto – Africa.

You’ve published books, raised millions for charity, completed two Iron Man events, are an in-demand motivational speaker and a new mum. Two questions: 1. When do you sleep? and 2: Where do you find the energy?
1. Every night. I’m in bed at 7.30pm and I read a book and then fall asleep. Sometimes I get woken up by (baby boy) Hakavai. Sometimes not.

2. If you have a lot of energy, you’ll probably be a better parent, lover, partner, friend, employee, entrepreneur etc. This is where I get mine:
– 3 Pillars: you can’t do sh*t if you’re not 1) getting enough sleep 2) eating well 3) moving your body.
– Specific daily ritual: I have my morning coffee, then I think of three things that I’m grateful for. Then I think of three things that I’m excited for.

You’re often described as an inspiration. Who inspires you?
Genghis Khan. He was exiled from his tribe as a kid and grew up in the most brutal conditions. He came from nothing and yet because of his persistence, ability to endure hardships and his incredible amount of mental fortitude, he was able to galvanise the Mongolian people and created the largest empire in all of history.

What has motherhood taught you about yourself?
That l can love unconditionally.

What has your work with the charity Interplast taught you?
That if you want to be happy and lead a fulfilled life, you have to give back.

Where is your happy place?

Name four people, living or dead, you’d love to sit down to dinner with.
– Gengis Khan – I’d want to hear his insights into his battle strategies. And for some reason, I really want to touch his face… (Is that weird? Don’t read into this too much, Michael!)
– Tony Robbins – I’d love to hear how he influences so many people.
– Jacinda Arden – just think she is an all-round cool chick but I’d love to pick her brains on how she’s navigating running a country and having a family.
– Queen Kaahumanu – She was this epic, fierce wife of the great King Kamehameha. She advised him, helped him unite the Hawaiian islands and broker peace between tribes, and was appointed Hawaii’s first co-leader when he died. As ruler, she abolished taboos and championed the rights of native Hawaiian women.

What would you say is the most overrated virtue?
To be honest, I don’t think we rate our virtues highly enough! Since when is someone too brave, too courageous, too wise, too tolerant?

Was your grit and determination forged in the fire – or have you always been this driven?
Always been driven, but assumed I was just ‘born that way’. Now I realise it was my mindset and the fact that I’ve always sought out new strategies to strengthen it. It’s something that everyone should and can do!

As a mind-set coach, what is the number one thing you see that holds people back from realising their potential?

I know you get this question a lot, but are you sure (your partner) Michael doesn’t have a brother?
He does. Several of them. All married happily with children. I on the other hand have three brothers, one of them single and ready to mingle. Should I be annoyed that no one asks about my bros?!

What qualities do you most admire in a friend?

What’s your go-to recipe if you want to impress people?
My mint slice – 1 cup walnuts; 1 cup dates; 1 cup shredded coconut; 1 tablespoon maple syrup.
Whiz it up in a food processor and then pour melted mint dark chocolate over the top.
I have it with a cup of peppermint tea, I’m exciting like that.

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