Executive Producer & Host Carole Mac: How I Turned Eating and Drinking Into My Career

An Interview With Phil La Duke

Phil La Duke
May 18, 2020 · 13 min read

Be patient. It takes time. You have to walk before you can run. There were so many times after losing TJ, that I wanted to run my own show. I desperately wanted to be where I am now. But I wasn’t ready. I needed to heal, heal, heal. I needed to learn. I needed to gain experience. I needed to make mistakes. I needed to become the person who was ready for the life that I wished for. So I went to grief counseling. I cried my eyes out. I punched the shit out of my punching bag. I took production and hosting courses. I created a blog and shot my first series. I wrote about food. I moved to New York City. I worked for a food personality. I asked people in the industry for advice. I did what they said. I made more shows. I made mistakes. I made more shows. And eventually, I became an Executive Producer and Host of my own shows. By then, I could handle it. And I’m just getting started.

  1. Believe. The more you believe in yourself, the faster it happens. I learned this lesson over and over again in gymnastics. And it’s true for all of life. When I was learning how to do a backflip on the high beam, for instance, I had to see it in my mind before I could do it on the beam. I started by doing a backflip on a line on the floor. Then I moved to a low beam. Then I moved to a higher beam. Each time, I gained belief in my ability. Eventually, I could see myself completing a backflip on the high beam. Now I was ready to try it for the first time safely. All of those steps prior to the flip were about gaining belief in myself. Once you truly believe it, you will have it.
  2. Be committed to the overall intention, but surrender how you will get there. Two years ago I dreamed of going to sommelier school and shooting a series following my journey. I was convinced that I knew exactly how to make it happen. I would partner with one particular school, and it would be amazing. So I pitched the concept to that school. They loved it, but for some reason, they did not pull the trigger. I kept going back to them to pitch new ideas. I was forcing it. I finally let go and opened up to approaching other schools. Literally the next day I got an email from the Sommelier Society of America. I approached them, set up a call, and within five minutes, we had a deal. They were the perfect fit! I wasted two years beating the drum of how I thought it must go. But once I surrendered, my dream came knocking in five minutes. And I’ve never had more fun making a show than I did making Somm School Insider with the Sommelier Society of America.
  3. Alignment with your greater power is where you should look for guidance. Every time I stop long enough to listen to my inner guidance, things move faster. By this, I mean meditate, listen to music, go on long walks, or whatever I need to do until I can hear my heart. When I do this, magic happens.
  4. Know your value! You are braver, more resilient, more capable, and more powerful than you know. Trust yourself. You’ve got this. I learned this as I was losing my son, and then recovering from his loss. I had no idea how I could possibly face TJ’s illness and death. But with a lot of grace, courage, and support from my family and friends, I did it. And then I had to face life without him. Another terrifying reality. But I committed to myself that I would not let grief define me. So I just kept releasing my pain and doing the work, day after day, and year after year. Until one day, I realized that I was happy again. I did it! This is the biggest accomplishment of my life. And now I know for sure that we are braver, more resilient, more capable, and more powerful than we know.

Authority Magazine

Leadership Lessons from Authorities in Business, Film…

Phil La Duke

Written by

Author of “I Know My Shoes Are Untied. Mind Your Own Business” and “Lone Gunman. Rewriting the Handbook on Workplace Violence Prevention” and “Blood on my hands

Authority Magazine

Leadership Lessons from Authorities in Business, Pop Culture, Wellness, Social Impact, and Tech. We use interviews to draw out stories that are both empowering and actionable.

Phil La Duke

Written by

Author of “I Know My Shoes Are Untied. Mind Your Own Business” and “Lone Gunman. Rewriting the Handbook on Workplace Violence Prevention” and “Blood on my hands

Authority Magazine

Leadership Lessons from Authorities in Business, Pop Culture, Wellness, Social Impact, and Tech. We use interviews to draw out stories that are both empowering and actionable.

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