The aim of The Next Challenge is to encourage people to live more adventurously and facilitate them in doing so. One way in which I strive to achieve this is by writing about my own experiences in the hope that they’ll variously excite, motivate and yes, even inspire others to take action.
As such, it could be said that part of my job is to keep going on expeditions so that I have new stories to tell and a degree of credibility.
Of course, this is no great hardship as I love expeditions. However, that does not mean that I want to spend my entire life off on adventures. I don’t.
Although I enjoy expeditions and believe that I develop through them, life as a “Professional Adventurer” would be as unfulfilling for me as a life spent entirely at a desk.
On expedition I am pushed both physically and mentally in a way that doesn’t often happen in normal life. I constantly find myself in new situations with new experiences and I relish those opportunities. But for me that is not enough.
I like to think and make use of my cognitive abilities in a way that scaling a mountain does not. You can insert your own jokes here but I have a brain and I believe it would be a waste not to use it.
Also, I enjoy creativity and value highly an outlet for it. Expeditions do not fulfill this need.
Finally, and far more importantly, I do not believe that expeditions alone are a good enough use of my time to make them my sole focus in life. They can be used to inspire, to raise funds for charities, to highlight causes and for general self-betterment but those things are not a worthy enough mission statement for my life.
There are increasing numbers of people for whom Professional Adventurer is a legitimate job title or aspiration and I wish them all the best. But, just as I don’t want to be a painter or a fireman, I also don’t want to be a Professional Adventurer.