...but start small...
...start with what you have, because what you have is plenty!
Aspirations and dreams don't have to be big, there's a difference between Big Dreams and Dreaming Big, what's important is that you have them! Most of us battle on many fronts to find a balance between doing what we have to do, and what we want to do. By that I mean, at a guess most of us are away from home, earning a crust for the best part of the day, dreaming about the things we wished we could be doing with that time, if the crust we had to earn, was an 'everlasting' loaf of bread!
Me, I love books as much as I love to be outdoors taking part in the various pursuits and interests I have. I have hundreds of books on my shelves (and corners of rooms) I still haven't read, why? Because finding time when you're trying to balance work, life, interests and stuff isn't easy, plus it's too easy nowadays to be distracted and have your attention drawn away elsewhere, like your phone and social media! Therefore I have an aspiration to read more, to make time to allow myself to be immersed within the covers of something that really is interesting, instead for the most part being distracted by snippets of peoples lives that have no direct bearing on my own.
I also love Maps (why not try OS Maps for free for 7 days) and there are so many parts of the UK I still haven't been to yet, had adventures in and explored and as an OS #GetOutside Champion, I feel I have a responsibility to make the contours of those maps come to life. Yet another aspiration, and one I aim to share with my wonderful little family as much as the bigger family I'm so proud to be part of. For me, I think about a line from Spiderman "with great power, comes great responsibility."
Now I'm not suggesting I'm Spiderman, nor a superhero or indeed powerful, but as a #GetOutside Champion I'm a custodian for helping people believe that getting outside will make us feel better! That having adventures and exploring our wonderful isle will make us better custodians of our environment as much as our own health! Not to forget you're also creating memories and sharing experiences with people, normally those closest to you, but sometimes you get to share those experiences with perfect strangers, that somehow, due to fate, a common interest and a smile become friends, does it get any better than that?
My dream is to take that aspiration to the next level! My dream is that my son (and wife) develop an aspiration to shun modern technology in preference to the great outdoors, that as Charlie gets older, he dreams about making dens, wild camping, eating food from a jetboil and watching the sun come up with a hot drink whilst sat on top of a peak somewhere, with us.
When I think back to my childhood, I don't remember having much, but what I did have was fun. I spent the evenings before bed playing football with my friends, weekends pursuing the interests I had, running, football, fishing and holidays with my Gran and Grandad, which generally involved cycling everywhere and always being outside, in short making memories!
My dreams also extend to making the lives of people I care about better. Actually scrub that, it also extends to making the lives of people I don't know better too! With all the skills I gained and the experiences I had in the build up to and during The 100 Peaks I want to be able to take that on to the next level. I want to offer people the opportunity to experience that, to experience the notion that with application that dreams can come true. A noble quest I know, but in addition to the legacy of the fundraising element of the Challenge, there is the longing to create something everlasting and improve peoples lives. That's why in part I created 'Be A Black Sheep', it's the first step in that direction.
I have many things I still wish to accomplish (it's a big list, like getting involved in D of E, doing my Mountain Leader & Adventure Training Courses) and in truth it's very difficult to not set goals for myself (like completing the Abbott World Marathon Majors & extreme races like Marathon des Sables) and dream about Challenges I wish to create and set myself (which are currently secret, sshhh). It's hard to go back to the mundane after you've had yours eyes opened to the potential of what we as individuals are capable of, so I'll leave you with this thought.
Is there something you aspire to? Something you dream about doing? If you dream it, you can achieve it, dreams take time to realise, never give up on them. Whilst we might not always get what we want from life, we always do get what we work for!
Find your passion, fuel it!