Take The Leap: Lessons From A Professional Skydiver With Melanie Curtis

AOB Melanie Curtis | Skydiving

When Melanie Curtis was working at an investment bank, she had the urge to pursue bigger things in life. Therefore, she decided to give skydiving a try and eventually became a life coach. In this episode, she joins Jennifer Cassetta to share her inspiring journey of personal development. Melanie talks about being in the financial industry, to jumping out of an airplane more than 12,000 times professionally, to guiding people in unlocking their fullest potential. She also opens up about getting through her most painful times by trying different healing modalities, working around anxious attachments, and handling fearlessness in life.

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Take The Leap: Lessons From A Professional Skydiver With Melanie Curtis

In this episode, I have such a special guest to share her badassery with the world. Her name is Melanie Curtis. Melanie, how are you?

I’m amazing. I love that I’m here. Thank you.

I love that you’re here. I love that everyone out there is here, too, because Melanie is a professional skydiver and has jumped out of an airplane 12,000 times. Saying that out loud makes my body sweat.

That’s totally understandable.

I can’t wait to know all about that. Melanie has competed at the highest levels in the sport of skydiving, has set world records with her team, and has worked around the world as a headlining professional athlete. Melanie is also a sought-after speaker and coach, helping type-A leaders in healing and how it amplifies peak performance in every area of life and business. She’s a host of a podcast called Trust The Journey, which I happen to be a guest on. Thank you. An author of, not 1 or 2, but 3 books called One Positive Thought Can Change Everything, With Our Whole Broken Hearts, and the third, How To Fly: Life Lessons from A Professional Skydiver. Melanie, welcome.

Thank you. I’m so excited. Let’s dive in. I am ready. I am a reader of this show. I’m a lover of you. I’m such a believer in this form of sharing. I hope that we can add a lot of value to whoever’s reading.

That is the intention. We set our intention before we got on. That was one. I want to share, because I also talk a lot about networking and getting out in groups, that’s how I met Melanie. We were involved in the same women’s networking group called The Upside based out of New Jersey, but all nationwide essentially. We met through the pandemic online. Here we are, friends and hosts on each other’s shows.

Good people find good people.

No matter where you are. Melanie, can you first tell everyone a little bit about your journey to becoming a coach and a professional skydiver?

It’s so difficult to tell my story in a concise way, which I will achieve in this episode. I’m going to make it concise because it’s almost like it’s hard to tell it all but to pick the parts that then we want to expand on.

Where did you start?

Very long story short, I fell in love with skydiving as a young person. My dad is a pilot. We had a drop zone skydiving center, literally at my house. I did my first skydive when I was eighteen years old and was wildly altered and passionately driven from that moment forward. I made every decision from that point on to figure out how to include skydiving in my life. Fast forward, I did the traditional path as well in the sense that I still went to college, graduated with great positive grades, and all that stuff. I worked at an investment bank out of college.

I made a ton of money doing that and spent it all on getting good at skydiving. I was able to leave that job, leave the traditional path, and become a true pro skydiver back then. My pro skydiving career has also evolved in the sense that the way that I’m a pro skydiver now, which is like doing demonstration jumps and jumping into large sporting events and using skydiving as a vehicle to champion equality and social impact.

That is very different than what I used to do when I first started, which was running events in marketing and being a leader and an influencer in the sport, traveling the world, meeting thousands of people, and there are many more things I could say. Inside of that career, I had an intuitive hit of, “I know this is not going to be enough. I know this is not going to deeply fulfill me for my life.” That intuition sent me into the inquiry around what would that be. Fast forward, a very long story short, it took me to life coaching back when life coaching was not cool and questionable at best.

I ended up trusting that intuition as well, following it and it’s one of the best decisions I ever made because it’s taken me fast forward to where we are now. It’s my career. Where I make the majority of my income is working with clients. It’s a huge part of my professional fulfillment as well. I could talk a lot more about that. Speaking dovetails from the skydiving and all the metaphors and insights you can get from that type of experience.

There are many things I need to go into, but first, I had no idea you went to banking. Knowing who you are now feels insane almost. How did you leave there? Can you go back to that moment of leaving that altogether? I know there are probably a lot of people reading in transition, getting that hit of intuition of this thing in their lives, whether it is banking or not.

There’s a great little story in the sense that I was becoming a person I didn’t like. I knew I wasn’t the person I was becoming. There was something. I would dread going to work. I would snap at my boss. I would not be that pleasant to be around. I wasn’t being there. I was in this energetic, emotional resistance to my reality. As a twenty-something, I didn’t know what was happening, but I also knew, “This is not cool to be like that. What’s wrong? Something’s wrong.”

That led me to start to wonder, “Do I get an MBA? What’s my next step?” I was already growth-minded as a young person. I bought the book What Color Is Your Parachute? It’s a classic job search book back in the day. I bought it because it had the word parachute in the title and I was wildly obsessed with skydiving already. A question in that book changed my life. It was, “What would you do if money were no object?”

At the time, it was an immediate answer. It was like, “Skydiving, duh?” As soon as the answer skydiving came into my consciousness, almost immediately after, there were all these reasons why I couldn’t do that. It was like, “Skydiving, for sure, but I don’t want to live in a trailer in the drop zone. I don’t want to eat ramen noodles for my life.” All these things that I was very clear about were not for me, assuming that was what professional skydiving had to look like. Just the immediacy of that answer made me take those blinders and start to creak them open and go, “That’s a professional skydiver who has a home and a family.”

I didn’t recklessly leave my investment banking job. I rather created an opportunity for myself that was a clear gap in the market where the drop zone that I was coaching at and I was competing at and training at with my skydiving teams was very obvious that they needed me. I pitched myself to them and I said, “I could run the experience side of the drop zone, maybe do events, this and that.” Long story short, they said yes. Eight months later, I left my job and started that one.

There are a couple of things I want to point out for anyone in that mode or transition now. I noticed that you looked for models that you would like to emulate versus right away those limiting beliefs came and said, “You can’t do this.” Logic says, “I can’t make that the light of my life,” but then you did pick out some people, even if they were the outliers who did make it work. That’s a great strategy to take on when you’re in that place then you created your own job, which I love. I’m very familiar with that. You are paving your own way and making it happen. Amazing. Do you regret ever leaving banking?

Never. Not even for a moment. I am proud of myself as a young person. I honestly am like, “How did I do that as a young person?”

I thought of that, too, because most people start to have those intuitive hits later in life. The mid-40s is the most common that at least I hear of it.

I feel very lucky that I found a great love in my life very young. Skydiving is one of the great loves of my life. That’s how I describe it when I talk about it because our relationship is long-term. Our relationship has evolved. It’s gone through ups and downs. We’ve broken up. We’ve gotten back together. We have a more mature connection now where I engage in skydiving in a very intentional way. I use it in a different way than I have in the past. I love it deeply. It doesn’t rule me either.

It’s very different than when I was young. I was obsessed with an addict for their fix. There’s power in that there’s also danger there, too, because I’ve seen a lot of people who love skydiving go down roads that lead them into not necessarily ruin. That’s a bit dramatic. For me, I feel like I had my passion couched with this desire to also not necessarily be safe but was couched with this deeper tone of wanting to control, be safe, and this anxiety that was at the root of my being, which is deep and meaningful around that. That helped me make more mindful choices, even though I was in this obsessive period of that love.

I can relate to having that love of my life being martial arts. How I engage in it now is very different than my 20s and 30s when I was completely obsessed on the mat every day. Now, I’m more teaching it or using it as a metaphor in my life, obviously for many reasons, including my artificial hip being one of them. It sits me down a little bit, but the love is still there, a different kind of love. Thanks for sharing that.

What I always like to tap into with all my guests is pointing out why I choose my guests because they’re all black belts in badassery. If you’ve been around this show, you know what that means. It means someone who has overcome major challenges, obstacles, failures, disappointments, and all of those things, comes out the other side a stronger person mentally, maybe physically, and spiritually, and now uses those inner strengths to help other people. can you share a little bit about how you’re using your journey to help others?

That’s been the vast majority of my career. I posted something about how I have “put myself out there” for the entirety of my career because I believe deeply that courageous self-expression and being bravely seen and known is our highest healing and contribution. That was rooted. When I first read Elizabeth Gilbert’s book, Eat, Pray, Love in 2007, I had a major moment of realization and ecstasy finishing that book.

Courageous self-expression and being bravely seen are our highest levels of healing and contribution in life.

It was so good.

I felt understood. I felt seen and not alone in such a powerful way that I was like, “I want to contribute like that.” Not necessarily I want to be like her, but I admire this impact and I want to make a similar style of impact the same way. My writing, speaking, and all the things that I create, “Why do I have a podcast? There’s a gazillion podcasts,” it’s so that we can have a platform to share vulnerably, to be out in the world, and to be seen in these ways that make an impact. I could go on and on about that.

Are there any similarities between you in the book at the time?

Yes, in relationships and love relationships.

Was there a bathroom floor moment? I feel like it’s happened already three times on this show. Every time I talk about it, everyone has a bathroom floor moment. I always remember it from the book when she’s on the bathroom floor crying hysterically. I feel like that moment is relatable in many people’s lives.

When I read it, no. I had not had the bathroom floor moment, but if I look back and the actual definition of badassery getting through challenges, I delivered a TED-style talk on the stage about essentially what holds us back the most. It’s a teaser title on purpose. In my career, I very much am very driven and motivated by my values of being deeply immersed in my life, taking highly valued life experiences, and enjoying being on the edges. Skydiving is one example of that. I like pushing boundaries for myself, but also what people tell me I can and can’t do and what society tells me I can and can’t do. This whole big goal and peak performance, I was highly experienced in this circle.

I love people. I’m a life coach for a reason. I’m deeply fulfilled by it many years in for a reason. It’s because connecting is my most cherished life experience. That circle of this Venn diagram that you’re hopefully putting together in your mind was big. I was missing a big piece. I was like, “Why am I not fulfilled? Why am I still struggling in this or that area? Why can’t I figure this piece out?”

The piece that I was missing was deep healing. Adding that circle to how I operate has been the game changer for me. How did I know that? I had to end up in deep pain. I was struggling. I can tell you whatever you want to know about that, I’m happy to share those stories. Deep pain led me to the idea of, “How do I solve this?” I ended up opening doors that I wouldn’t have necessarily opened. Feel free to chime in because I could keep going.

On the tip of my tongue is, “What was the pain? I want to know.” People want to know. It makes you most relatable. You’re on stage. You’re talking about overcoming, sharing, and being vulnerable, but are you actually sharing the things? Tell us. What did you have to overcome?

There are a lot of different things. It’s not like I’m perfectly executing all the things and feeling perfectly confident entrepreneurially. I’ve grown in that way. Ultimately for me, it was in the lane of love relationships where I felt stupid and confused. I’m like, “I’m successful in many other areas. Why can’t I not figure this out? Why is this lane still not working for me? Why is it still painful?”

I ended up in a breakup situation. My best friend owns a healing and retreat center in Florida. Because of the pain in this area of my life, I started to open my mind to other healing modalities. I am totally willing to do the work. I’m willing to go to therapy. I believe in that. I’m willing to go to the retreats. I’m willing to read the books and listen to all the podcasts. I am not lazy. Because of that, it finally got me to the point where I started to consider things I otherwise wouldn’t. My friend had been doing all this work with psychedelic healing modalities and plant medicines. I grew up in the Nancy Reagan era of saying no to drugs, egg in the frying pan, and the whole thing.

If you are experiencing pain in life, open your mind to various healing modalities. Go to therapy, attend retreats, read books, and listen to podcasts.

I was very entrenched in that idea and ideology, but because of the pain that I was in, nothing else had worked for me, and the stories that I was hearing from a very trusted, credible source in my life, I was willing to give this a chance even though I was terrified of it. That is a huge thread in my entire career. Why am I successful at all? It’s because you have intentional bravery.

It’s not the cliché, “I feel the fear and I do it anyway.” It’s, “I feel called in this direction and I can’t ignore that,” kind of bravery. That happened to me with plant medicine. When I finally was hurting enough, I was like, “It’s time for me to try this. Maybe it’ll work. Maybe it won’t.” That led me down a huge path of deep healing in a multitude of areas of my life. It transformed my experience in love relationships. My life is entirely different in that lane now. I am such a believer in this as a healing modality. I am a public advocate for it and an activist around the legalization movement for psychedelics as well. A lot of that we talk about on Trust The Journey.

If you’re interested, listen to Trust The Journey. You’re the second guest in only nine episodes that I’ve had who has had a healing journey through plant medicine. Readers, this was not planned. Tanya Memme shared her journey on one of the episodes, hitting rock bottom and using that as a tool for her healing journey. It’s not planned, it just happened.

Now, here’s Melanie with a similar story. I haven’t done it yet. I don’t say never to a lot of things. I don’t know what life holds. I find it interesting. It’s definitely something that keeps coming up at least in my circles and hearing it more and more on podcasts. I do want to tap into that a little bit, but I like to know a little more of the details.

When you talk about the pain and the lane of your relationships, I always go back to Life Coaching 101. It’s a tool called The Wheel of Life. It’s a wheel, a pie chart. It has all the different areas of your life that make you. Many times we get stuck in one or two of those things and make it our full identity. For example, a career is one part of your life, then there’s your health, finances, wealth, spirituality, and all these different things. You’re talking about your intimate love relationships. Can you describe what that looked like in your life so people can relate? What did it look like before the healing journey and what does it look like now?

Keep in mind, it’s not about the outcome. It’s about the fact that I am no longer afraid of the outcomes. I’m not afraid anymore. I’ll share the story that I shared in my talk. I feel like we’ve all had a breakup. We’ve all been in painful breakups. You experience understandable heartbreak. It’s totally normal. I had broken up with the person that I was dating. I had already done some healing work around this anxious attachment. My experience is this feeling of feeling insecure, anxious, overly attached, afraid of outcomes, and all of those things. That was my experience in love relationships.

It is the second time that term has come up for me. Anxious attachment, can you explain it to someone who’s never read of that?

I’m not a therapist, but a book that I highly recommend to almost all of my clients is the book called Attached. It’s by Rachel Heller and Amir Levine. It is required reading for anyone on a personal development path who wants to understand their relationships. There’s plenty more complexity to human dynamics beyond attachment theory. Understanding attachment theory is important. In short, it’s a secure attachment where you feel at peace, calm, and secure in your relationship with other people. Love relationships tend to be the most potent and triggering for people, which is why they are the most discussed.

There’s the avoidant attachment style, which is, “If a person gets too close, I need to keep them at this distance because I only feel safe relating to people if they are far enough from me.” There’s the anxious attachment style, which is, “I need to be very close to you. Otherwise, I don’t feel safe unless I’m constantly being reassured or I’m feeling this constant connection.”

That’s historically been my experience. I could see, based on my learning, that was something I wanted to work on. I wanted to heal and I wanted to become more self-reliant and have the skills and tools of self-love, which sounds super cliché, but when we’re talking about it from a pragmatic standpoint, it works. When you have access to it, you can be in a relationship with people differently than you had in the past.

If you are self-reliant, you can be in a relationship with other people differently than you have in the past.

Think about having access to that framework, those terms even. When you were describing the anxious attachment, I had a flashback of an old boyfriend telling me, “You want me to be like a chihuahua for you. I am always affirming you and all this.”

It’s very real.

It’s funny to hear that and look back obviously now, but that’s interesting. Many people get in and out of relationships and don’t take the time to do the inner work, to then create something new and different and more fulfilling in the future.

We have to turn the mirror onto ourselves. It’s not to say that there isn’t impact and influence from other people. A relationship is made up of two multitude of impacts and forces, but if we are not doing the work to look at ourselves, we’re leaving a lot on the table and we’ll continue to repeat patterns until life forces us into that awareness, which is almost always very painful. Even for someone like me who is very deliberate, into growth, and intentional, I was like, “What the F am I missing?”

The short story about that impact is I broke up with this person and I was angry. I was on the level of anger that I felt did not match the situation. I hadn’t even dated this person very long, but I was angry about what happened, and I knew. One of my favorite quotes about personal healing and development is, “If you are hysterical, it’s historical.” Meaning if the emotional response to a situation outweighs what should happen, then it’s something deeper.

Historical in the past.

Yes, past stuff and familiar origins potentially. That led me to finally sit with Ayahuasca and continue to do work. It’s been a multitude of ceremonies. When I talk about healing with psychedelic medicines, I’m talking about professional facilitators who hold ceremonial sacred space with these medicines to help you go inward and discover and unearth what poison needs to come up and out of you but also what insights needs to become apparent and aware to you so that you can use them going forward. The ceremony is only one part. That awareness and the healing that we get from it then is followed by integration, which is a big part of what we already do in life coaching and stuff like that. We’re doing it with other tools that help us get a deeper awareness of ourselves.

I asked Tanya Memme the same question now that I’m going to ask you, which is for those out there who will never try any of that plant medicine and psychedelics, it’s a hard pass. What are some other methods that you have used that have been successful or that you use with your clients to get to the other side, essentially?

I don’t think psychedelics are for everyone. I certainly don’t promote it doing anything illegal. Trust yourself. It is important that the medicine calls to you. If it’s not for you, that’s cool. You can do holotropic breath work.

The medicine could be anything.

The medicine is always different. There are many different ways we can heal. We can write, self-express, and be brave in creativity. We can be brave in conversation, connection, and relationship. We can get therapy. We can deepen our friendships. I mentioned breathwork. We can get into our bodies and somatically start. There are plenty of healing modalities out there that help us get into our bodies and realize where energy and pain are stuck. We don’t need a psychedelic to do that.

As I shared earlier, I like to play in the lanes that are on the edges. It’s a very natural fit for me to eventually have made it there. I don’t think it’s superior, better, or anything like that. It’s what worked for me. Breathwork is an example of how you can elicit and bring about a psychedelic experience from the natural endogenous DMT in your body. There’s plenty of stuff. I’m not a doctor. You have to make sure. if you are considering doing psychedelics, make sure you do all the things. You can’t be on any antidepressants or anti-anxiety meds and all that stuff.

Breathwork is powerful. If you bring the same intention and the same willingness to integrate the insights that you get and you sit with trained facilitators and guides, you can have as powerful of a ceremonial experience, although shorter term. That’s something that I would say very much falls into the category.

I love that. I do breathwork every morning. I’m deep into some Joe Dispenza work. I want to go to his live sessions. On another note, I did do an intense breathwork ceremony once with the trained facilitator. I left that building so high. I felt so high. It doesn’t last forever, but knowing that you can tap into that with your breath was incredible. It’s powerful. It opened my eyes to, “How can I then take breathwork and incorporate it into my daily routine so at least I can set my state every morning with that, plus my meditation?” We went deep really fast.

One of the topics I wanted to talk about was pulling way back into that airplane, 12,000 jumps. It boggles my mind to master anything. I don’t know how many times you’re supposed to do something, but I always think of, for example, my martial arts practice like, “How many times have I thrown a roundhouse kick?” Thousands of times.

Jumping out of an airplane 12,000 times is mindboggling. Like I said in the beginning, it makes me want to sweat. I’ve jumped out of a plane once and I was in my early twenties. I did it only because my dad asked me to. He was doing it. He was into it. We went Upstate New Paltz, New York. I did it. I was terrified the entire way down. I’m holding onto my straps with dear life. I couldn’t even open my arms. How do you feel about the word fearlessness? I have my own opinion, but I always came up in a coaching session that someone wanted to feel fearless. I had to stop myself from saying what I was about to say. I won’t say it yet. What do you feel about that word?

I think it’s not true. I don’t think it exists. Through building confidence and competence, we can cut the severity and potency of fear. It is unlikely that we will be without it. Here’s the thing. Here’s the rub on the discomfort of fear. A couple of years ago, I was hired because we set a new world record in skydiving. We did 80 women upside down, going 180 miles an hour, holding hands in a predetermined formation out of 5 different aircraft. It was a super intense achievement. It required a lot of us to get to that achievement.

We can cut the severity and potency of fear through confidence building, but it is unlikely that we will be without it.

Why do I bring that up? After that, I was exhausted. Understandably, as anyone would. You do a big giant thing and it makes sense that you would have a crash after. Part of that was me going, “I’m tired of feeling afraid.” That was partly the exhaustion talking, but when I think about it and I reflect in a bigger, wider view, as a growth-minded, growth-centered person, I am a person who seeks my own edge and likes that feeling of expansion and growth and contribution that comes on those edges, fear is ultimately always baked into that because we’re constantly in and dancing with the unknown. Even as competent, capable, and as good as I am as a skydiver, do you think I wasn’t scared on those world record jumps? I was really scared. What if I screw it up in front of everybody? What if I mess it up? What if I die?

You must feel that.

There are ways to get ourselves to a place where we are able to move forward, but I also think there’s something badass to speak in the art of badassery to becoming more and more masterful with that feeling of fear. I am quite skilled at feeling that. I’ve jumped out of an airplane 10,000 times. I’ve started and run multiple businesses. I am a public speaker. I have to step on stage and be judged in front of people. I would invite people who want fearlessness ironically into experiences where they can feel less and less afraid of that feeling.

You said it beautifully. My brain whittles down, “Do things more and more, and over and over, you become less and less afraid.” Whatever that is for you out there reading, whatever you are afraid of, Melanie is saying, lean into it and keep going. It’s going to expand us in ways we probably don’t even know. How magnificent. Could you sum up what jumping out of a plane 12,000 times has given you as far as inner strength? I call them secret weapons, the things that we gain because of our challenges, fears, etc., not in spite of them.

I was thinking about this before this interview because I have done so many different things. I haven’t just jumped out of an airplane. I’ve also written books and started businesses. All of those things are scary in their own ways. I feel like the throughline is this intentional bravery. I feel like I am contributing and modeling that in the world.

I’m drawn to it myself, but I also deeply feel like when I do things and I’m feeling scared, insecure, sad, or whatever it is that I’m feeling in my challenges, sharing those things alongside the world records and the cool guy stuff, this and that, is that I hope that it helps people recognize that I’m not special. I say that in a very loving way. I mean that in the best possible way. If I believe that and if I can do it, so can anyone else. That’s what I hope it does. It opens up this door of possibility in people’s minds to go, “If she felt like that, I feel like that. She could do that. Maybe I could do that too.”

When I read your bio, I was like, “If Melanie can write three books, I can write three books.” It does work. I thank you so much for all your sharing and bravery. When I speak to you, I automatically feel very grounded like, “This is who I am.” I feel like all of us strive to have that. I want to acknowledge you for that because it’s so awesome. I did cover why you’re a black belt in badassery. Again, it’s not just because of the jumps. It’s about all the things that you share because of your life experience. Thank you. I have some rapid-fire questions that I like to end all the episodes with. Are you ready for them?

I’m ready.

What was your favorite food as a kid?

Fruity Pebbles.

Two, if you could have a drink with anyone alive or dead, who would it be and what drink would you have?

It would be my gram, my mom’s mom. We would probably have a coffee to sit, enjoy, and cuddle while we talked. It would be wonderful.

What’s your favorite self-help/personal development book?

This is almost impossible to answer because there are so many. It’s not a self-help book, but you have an entrepreneurial audience. One of my favorite entrepreneurial books is Principles by Ray Dalio. I love it. It certainly falls into self-help. The reason I bring it up is because he’s very intense about his delivery, but in short, his assertion of meaningful relationships and meaningful work is such a simple way to help us filter our decision-making. I love all of his stories from a business perspective but also from a perspective of being a person and how we decide things.

That’s awesome because I feel like that could relate to anyone if they’re a professional, an entrepreneur, etc. Last but not least, what’s your favorite hype song that gets you going?

Whatever It Takes by Imagine Dragons was 100% my theme song. For the record, I used it for my stage talk. They say that to induce flow. You can do stuff like that where you listen to the same song and then you do it as X number of minutes before you do the thing. It works.

That’s interesting because Joe Dispenza’s book that I’m listening to says that, “Pick a song and listen to it all the time.” Thank you so much for sharing. You are truly a badass. Tell everyone how they can connect with you, follow you, get your books, etc.

Thank you so much. My website is MelanieCurtis.com. I am most active on Instagram. It’s @MelanieCurtis11. The podcast, if you are interested in hearing more, it’s Trust The Journey. Please reach out. I’m always happy to connect with people who resonate with anything that I share. I never feel the show is long enough to share. I feel like we just scratched the surface, but I’m grateful and I love you.

Melanie can go deep. Get on her podcast. Listen to Trust The Journey if you want to go deep with her on that healing journey. Thank you all for the readers. Make sure you subscribe. Leave us a review. Let us know what you think of this episode. Thank you so much for reading. You’re a badass and you know it.

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About Melanie Curtis

AOB Melanie Curtis | SkydivingMelanie Curtis is a world record pro skydiver, keynote speaker, coach, author and activist.

She has been tapped as an expert in Forbes, Fast Company, Thrive Global, on CBS Evening News, CBS Sunday Morning, NBC Know Your Value, Masters of Scale, and many more.

Melanie facilitates genre-busting professional development for companies, coaching teams to wield fear and flow state (and other F words), softening perfectionism and blind performance that becomes our prison if not balanced with deeper healing and hilarity.

She is a teammate for Type A clients willing to look bravely at themselves as a nonnegotiable component to reaching our next levels of peak performance and relational connection, all while embracing the intensity and ridiculousness of being human at our edges.

Melanie has authored 3 books, including How to Fly, available on Audible.

Melanie co-founded Highlight, an all-female professional demonstration jump team, using skydiving as a vehicle to champion equality and inspire women and girls to live bold brave lives of their own design.

Melanie co-founded the Trust the Journey podcast, where she shares at length and in depth about her own healing experiences in service to helping others heal deeply. Via the show and her own public platform, Melanie is a passionate advocate for legal, safe and equitable access to transformative healing with psychedelic plant medicines.

AOB Melanie Curtis | Skydiving