I’m all excited and bouncy this morning. I’ve tried to write this post a few times… but I think I finally have a nice angle to share.
This summer is going to be my ‘Summer of Adventure’. An opportunity to reshape my life and build a happier future. It’s been building for a while and it’s time to make it happen.
The last few years have been very odd. First with the pandemic then with my spinal cord injury.
Through all this change, adventure is part of what’s kept me… ‘me’.
I enjoy adventure in a childlike way. I don’t have the independence to do many adventures alone, but I love to adventure with friends.
Adventure comes in all shapes and sizes. From visiting the farm shop to riding at bike parks.
I don’t need to ‘create’ adventure as such. That sorta happens by itself. Between the bike riding, trike riding, daily errands and my work there are always adventures to be had.
By removing barriers we keep the adventures flowing. We’ve engineered all sorts of different tools so I can access the world. Tools like the ebikes and the buggies are enablers of adventure.
The adventures are awaiting and I just need to fuel them with enough bandwidth to dream and plan, and enough energy to communicate, arrange and enjoy.
The fuel for many of my adventures used to be my work. We travelled the world speaking at events, running research and visiting the BBC teams I support.
These days not so much. My role at the BBC changed. The friction has got ever higher and the opportunity for adventure has all but evaporated. It’s started sucking energy and bandwidth from the rest of my life.
With that in mind i resigned my role a few weeks ago and I’m finishing with the BBC at the end of the month. It’s been almost 11 years and I’m proud of it all. But it’s not the right thing for me anymore.
I’m changing my relationship with work. Along with a focus on adventure comes a focus on play.
I’m going to be working part time on a side project I’ve built with a friend. It’s a tool which detects financial crime and protects people.
It’s a project which came from play and I am excited to play with it more. It will directly enable some adventure. It’s already taken me to the US and Sweden. There’s more travel to come.
My new work is more playful while being less demanding. I’m going to maintain my current income by working on it around 3 days a week.
It won’t be the only paid work i do. I’ll still be doing events, coaching, training and whatnot. But it will cover all my bills and give me a financial reserve to adventure with.
It’s a much healthier relationship with my work life.
The rest of the time is all focused on adventures. I’m going to build my life around them, just as I used too.
The current plan is at least two adventures a week and one big adventure a month.
Interestingly enough a structure is already forming. There are three different types of adventure starting to emerge. It all depends on how I move.
A buggy adventure tends to be fairly mundane but fun. For example, going to the supermarket, farm shop, hospital, attending events etc. Something like a centre parcs trip with friends would also be a buggy adventure. While we might ride bikes while there, the core of the adventure is going to be in the buggy.
A bike adventure is all about technical trail riding. These are trips where we take the ebikes and ride challenging terrain. This would include adventures to riding hot spots like Wales or the Surrey hills. I’m excited for these. I’m hoping to broaden my experience and ride in many new and interesting places.
A trike adventure is mostly focused on distance and fitness. These adventures are where we take the trikes and we wiggle our way down a coastal path or around a park. The trike is the gentlest exercise for me. It’s a great way to build my fitness and strength without the pain I experience riding a normal upright bike.
These templates are a tool. They help me to structure my thoughts and my plans. My goal is to always have one adventure of each type booked ready to go. This way I always know when I’ll be going outside next.
I am excited and bouncy for the future. A focus on adventure and play sets me up to be a happier Jamie. Being more myself and getting involved with many new and exciting things. Lion is excited too. He’ll be beside me for all the adventures to come.
I’m seeing this as the ‘summer’ of adventure but I’m open to the future. I’ll see where it goes, what pops up and then go from there. It might be a gap between two full time jobs, or it may be the foundation for the next decade.
I have thrived in the last year and I can’t wait to find out what happens next.