Sail on, Sailor

On the eve of his departure on an around the world sailing race, JLA account manager Danny Lee muses on some of the best motivational speakers he has worked with: 

One of the benefits/hardships (delete as appropriate) of working at a speaker bureau is you get the chance to see dozens and dozens of motivational speakers. Speakers who’ve sailed across X, scaled Y, orbited several times around Z. And sure, hearing tales of adventure can be incredibly inspiring in their own right and may give you the boost you need in your work life, but sometimes you just want to get out there and do it for yourself. But where on Z should you begin?

I’m going to begin by taking a sabbatical (and then sail around the world in my year off). Before I go I need to fulfill my contractual blogging obligations, so perhaps it’s a good idea to talk about the motivational speakers I’ve seen that have planted the seed for my own desire for adventure.

Ed Coats is a doctor by trade and was selected to join James Cracknell and Ben Fogle as they raced to the South Pole. He then went on to complete his own 30 at 30 (thirty challenges in his 30th year). I’ve missed the boat on 30, but am aiming to catch the boat on 36 (OK, 37). As far as motivational speakers go, Ed’s are inspiring footsteps to follow.

Chris Hadfield is a bit less of an everyman than Ed. I mean no disrespect by that, but if you’re going to become a test pilot turned astronaut then you’re going to have to get started pretty early. However, seeing Earth from space in Chris’ photo collection is enough to make you want to get out there and explore the planet we’re on.

It would probably be remiss to not mention a sailor as a source of inspiration for my own sailing adventure. Ellen MacArthur is one of a select few to have circumnavigated the globe single-handed – more people have been to space than achieved this particular feat. Who doesn’t want to get out there and battle the elements, pushing themselves to their physical and mental limits? I bet a fair few would like to try. And for everyone else: The One Show is on daily at 19:00.

It’s fairly common for people to remark after seeing an adventurer, “that’s all well and good, but ordinary people don’t have the resources to do that.” It’s easy to be cynical (fun too), but it is more than possible to have an adventure without being a professional adventurer. Ask Alastair Humphreys if you don’t believe me. I don’t want to finish by saying something trite like you only live once, but, you know, it’s true. So get out there and do what makes you happy (if you want), it’s later than you think.

These are just some of the people we work with at JLA. If you would like to know more about any of the names featured, or if you need any further suggestions, please contact us.

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