Jon Beardmore works as a freelance project management consultant, while taking career breaks to maintain an adventurous lifestyle. Here, Jon talks about his next adventure.
Are you looking to escape part-time?
My name is Jon and I’m a project manager in the rail industry / adventurer. As part of my escape I’m planning a big overland vehicle expedition to Central Asia in 2013.
My situation is slightly different to a lot of other escapees. I’m only looking to escape on a temporary basis. I enjoy my job and the lifestyle that it affords. It provides me with short term, deadline focused dates for projects, and plenty of free time for other activities. I love the freedom it gives me to travel and explore. My personal challenge is to make better use of my down time and develop my passion for adventure around the world.
I’ve been developing my escape since June 2011. In April 2013 I depart on a unique overland 4×4 trip from London to Malaysia and back, through Central Asia. Travelling via Russia, the Silk Road to China and south, via Laos, to Malaysia. The return journey will be via India, Nepal, Pakistan, Iran, and Turkey and finally Europe to London.
What was my moment of truth?
Back in July of 2010 I was temporarily out of work and a little frustrated with life so I decided buy a round the world ticket, hand in the keys to my flat and head to South America.
While on a bus in Argentina in December of 2010 I made the decision to maintain an adventurous lifestyle after my return to London. I knew maintaining my motivation would require a fair bit of effort, so I kept searching for inspiration.
Over the summer of 2011 I came across the Escape the City website and searched the Internet for similar minded people. There are a huge number of people out there being adventurous everyday. This was my motivation to plan something big.
5 Lessons I learned in 2012
1. Lead from the front. If it’s your idea you have to be the driving force for your plans to come to fruition.
2. Do what you say you are going to do. This builds faith, trust and support in your project and you.
3. Talk to the experts and people that have done it before. They are great for inspiration and showing you potential solutions.
4. Embrace the struggle. Sometimes it’s hard. Keep persevering even if it’s only in small portions of effort.
5. Face your fears. Tell the world your plans. Write them down and publish them. I did this in February 2012.
How to get started?
There is a wealth of great resources and information available these days. The following have been a fantastic help to me, and great place to start for anybody interested in a more adventurous life.
• Royal Geographic Society – This is the place to start for adventure exploration. Their resources are second to none.
• Explorers Connect Website – Adventure based social network allowing you to find adventures and adventurers.
• Other adventurers with a strong Internet presence such as Al Humphreys, Dave Cornthwaite, Tim Moss.
• The Overlanders Handbook by Chris Scott – A great source of overlanding knowledge and knowhow.
• HUBB Website – This is the best forum for sharing ideas and meeting other vehicle and bike travellers.
• Lonely Planet – Thorn Tree forum is another useful source for sharing travel information.
One way to maintain an adventurous lifestyle
I’ve set out to develop an adventurous lifestyle, but to combine this with my working career. Being a freelance consultant has allowed me to create a flexible lifestyle for myself. It allows me to work in my field, while continuing my travels and adventures.
You don’t have to escape full time to find more adventure and excitement. Another option is to take career breaks and come back to your job and make more use of your down time as a freelancer.
So, how do you become more adventurous?
Go on more adventures!!
In 2013 I can provide opportunities for people to join my expedition. If you would like to get involved, either on the journey or in a support role please visit my website and get in touch: http://www.bigoadventures.com