Each week, we profile members of the Serenflipity community who artfully build the spirit of serendipity into their daily lives.

This week, meet Colin O'Brady, an inspiring endurance athlete and speaker who calls Portland, Oregon home. Scroll on to learn more about his record-setting achievements, why he believes that stepping outside of your comfort zone is critical, and the mantra he uses to get unstuck (he tells us it works every time).

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Name: Colin O’Brady

Your favorite nickname? CTOB (my initials)

Where were you born? Olympia, WA

Where do you live now? Portland, OR

What’s your profession or calling? I'm a Professional Endurance Athlete (2xWorld Record Holder)

What’s a secret power that you have (that may surprise us)? I can hold my breath underwater for 4 minutes.  

What’s your go-to local zen spot? Mt. Hood... being in the outdoors of the Pacific Northwest grounds me.

What’s your most beloved travel destination? Mallorca, Spain. I used to live there...it’s the best.

Why is adventure important to you and what do you do to infuse that into your daily life? I make it a point to say 'yes'. The more you say yes, the more adventures you're bound to have!

Why do you get out of your comfort zone? There's no better way to grow (in my opinion) than to adventure outside of your comfort zone. I love what I do for "work" because put simply, adventuring is my job. The happiest times in my life are when I push my body beyond its perceived limits — I come back out on the other side renewed and inspired by the experience.

Photo courtesy of Colin O'Brady

Photo courtesy of Colin O'Brady

What's your mantra for getting through challenges or tough times? "This too will change." I learned this during a 10-day silent meditation retreat. You sit for so long that your body aches, but you realize that everything is impermanent. Remembering this has taken me through a lot of tough moments.

What's your go-to 'thing' to get unstuck? Slow down to speed up. In the past, I used to think I needed to work harder when I'm lacking creatively, spiritually or just having a hard time. But I've found that taking a deep breath, meditating, or going for a walk helps me to get unstuck. Do less to do more.  

How has Serenflipity played a role in your life? I was at a conference in Atlanta with Cara Thomas. I didn't know any of the people there. She opened up the decks and let the games begin. Before I knew it I was dancing the night away with a pack of new friends! This reminded me of the days backpacking around the world post college; I love it.

Connect with Colin:

Instagram, TwitterTED Talk