It all started last Sunday evening. I was at home with my girlfriend, discussing my goals for the coming months. I wanted a challenge, something to aim for. But what, Tough Mudder? The Rat Race? I even looked at doing an Iron Man! None of them really appealed to me the more I looked into them. I was also amazed at just how much they cost when you start taking everything into consideration.
Unconsciously, the seed was about to be planted.
I think I made some blasé comment about it being cheaper to trek across India, and that was that. Whilst I continued to look into other options and, as per usual, I had set off down the proverbial rabbit hole. My creative mind went into overdrive. Fast forward a couple of hours, I suddenly found myself filled with excitement, discussing the possibility of walking the entire length of India, as if it was something everyone does. But the reality is my mindset is pretty different to the average persons. Not better, just different.
Now the seed was firmly planted.
I kissed goodbye to any sleep that night. I sat awake most of the night with my mind going ten to the dozen. Come 2am and I decided to get up, brew some coffee and put my ideas into action. I had a potential journey of over 3000km to plan. Through the mountainous valleys of Kashmir to the tropical landscape of the Western Ghats. The reality is, it’s the same as walking from London to Edinburgh - five times over. In addition, the temperature will range from sub-zero degrees in Northern India to an excruciating 50+ degrees Celsius the further South I venture. On top of that, I’ll be carrying a rucksack in excess of 30-40kg.
Why….or, as I like to say, why not?
My goal is to raise awareness for mental health and male suicide prevention. I have suffered myself, so I know what’s it’s like to have everything one minute and then suddenly have it all taken away from you because of mental health issues. I also know first hand how the NHS is struggling to cope with offering effective therapy, and how the government run schemes for small business funding is prejudice against people who have experienced mental health issues.
Thankfully, there is so much more being down nowadays to raise awareness, but it’s only the tip of the iceberg and so much more needs to be done. I want to play an active part in raising awareness. There were no, ifs and buts, simply yes, yes, and fuck yeah.
I’ve often wondered if I’m fearless or foolish?
As I continue to plan my journey, I know I am going to come up with many difficult challenges. Some obvious, and some less so. What I do know for sure is that I am going to need the support of you guys. Keep your wallets in your pocket though because I’m not after your money. I am after your help by way of advice, contacts, and introductions.
Are there certain people I should be following?
Do you have something that could help the cause?
I would love to hear from you.
I am currently in talks of what charity I’ll be supporting so I’ll keep you posted. Again, if you have any suggestions please let me know in the comments below.
Let's beat the stigma of mental health together and prevent the increase in male suicide.
Until the next time