A good coffee shop inspires conversation, requiring a heartfelt depth of community. Making a cup of coffee is easy, providing an embrace for each person walking through the door is not something just anyone can do. Entrepreneurs, Kirk and Patti Aulin of Bahamas Coffee Roasters, have started their dream of caffeinating the lives of those lucky enough to visit Harbour Island, Bahamas.
Their spirit, drive, and coffee are one of a kind. Painted “fishing blue” floors were inspired by the love for fishing on the open waters of 30 foot depth, and their smiling faces prove their passion for life, people, and roasting. The couple from Canada, have an amazing story. From professional hockey, to managing resorts throughout the Caribbean, this couple is proof that living the life of your dreams is in fact possible.
Work is not work at Bahamas Coffee Roasters, it is simply passion. Commuting by boat is their daily lifestyle choice. What they have created on Harbour Island is a place for inspiration and conversation, greeting everyone that walks through the door. Each individual is important and therefore Kirk and Patti leave each guest better off than before they walked through the door. The invaluable time spent at this lovely spot is a bookmark in my life.
The gift of Kirk, Patti, and Bahamas Coffee Roasters and their dedication of connection, time, and space gave me five fabulous reminders I want to share with you.
- Protect Your Time – I was fortunate enough to spend two weeks on Harbour Island, and even more fortunate to stumble upon the eight month old coffee shop. I instantly connected with Kirk and his dog on my first visit in. We struck up conversation, and morning coffee visits became my daily routine. Over the course of my travels, conversed with this special couple, discussing philosophy, philanthropic adventures, passion, family, and the future of coffee. Perhaps the most important takeaway was the reminder that time is precious. Choosing who, what, where, and how we spend our time is a reflection of our true character, making moments in time worth everything. Protecting your time is giving your heart and soul to those individuals or things that truly deserve it. When there becomes a boundary issue, take on the attitude of Thank You. Thank you for not wasting my time and move on. Protect your time and give your time to the ideas, people, and things that make your heart sing and also reciprocate the effort.
- Smile Often – A simple smile can brighten something around you. A smile is a hello. An acknowledgement. A form of hello, good morning, or good evening that can break barriers. So many people are closed off. Not open to expression or communication, or simply concerned only with their own agenda. A smile provides warmth in a non threatening way, and at the very least may light a spark for one tiny millisecond in someone that needs hope. We all have our battles in life. For many, smiling is hard. Smile often. Say hello. This simple act can open doors unknown and provide new meaning for everything.
- Fish As Often As You Can – For the Aulin’s, fishing is life. The quality family time on the water is what they live for. They have chosen their home and business to support the things they love, living from the heart. Fishing may not be your passion or what fuels you, however there is something inside of you that reconnects your spirit and makes everything worth it. Understanding that drive and supporting it will change your attitude, relationship, and quality of life. Whether simple or complex, feed what drives you. I’m not saying to give up your career or move to an island. What I am saying is to find balance. With balance, you are centered, ready to do more, be more, and give more. Fish as often as you can.
- Caffein-ate Your Day – Growing up I watched my father fill a 64 oz. cup with Diet Pepsi as a morning ritual. His version of caffeine was not coffee, it was Pepsi. Caffeine comes in many forms, and I am not referring to coffee or chocolate. Bahamas Coffee Roasters filled my cup with lattes, americano’s, and tea for 2 weeks, although it was not the liquid that fueled my day. It was the attitude. To caffein- ate your day, you must greet it with a positive attitude. Each day is a blessing and offers a gift. Many days can be filled with grumpy, bashful, or sleepy. It is your choice to engage at any level. My morning routine includes a cup of coffee, however that is not the beginning to the end. Gratitude, a smile, and a gentle reminder of my purpose is my true caffeine. There will be tough times, and times you need some help. Ask for it. The Aulin’s caffein-ated my days with their attitude and love, instilling a small reminder to choose positive over negative and choose hope and desire over woes and bitterness.
- Be Open To Possibility – If you find your hands in fists more often than not, it may be time to discover why you are closed off. Touch is important. Our hands are a gift, feeling embrace, handshakes, and almost everything we touch daily. Hands are the foundation for possibility. Closing off does not allow energy to flow and keeps things stagnant. The hands that embraced me while visiting the coffee shop opened conversation, possibility, and hope. From the screenwriter to the local construction workers, each of their hands wrapped around a cup of joe proved to inspire communication. Communication leads to hope, hope leads to possibility, and possibility leads to change. Be open to possibility. Only you can decide if it is right for you.
Thank you to this lovely couple who has traveled the world and smiled for so many people, and for what I am sure has touched many hearts across the globe. The attitude, spirit, and embrace is one of a kind, and something I will never forget. May you take these coffee shop lessons and apply them in your own life. May you protect your time, smile often, fish as often as you can, caffein-ate your day, and be open to possibility.