Why Not Have An Amazing Year

We made this whole thing up, this calendar thing. In the northern hemisphere, nine days after the winter solstice, we end the year and begin anew. We reflect on the past year and celebrate. We look to the coming year and dream. The beginning of each new year is an inflection point. We let go of what was and believe again in what could be. 

But...what if, instead of waiting for the year to end, we shrunk down this cycle period of reflection and renewal? What if every day was a new year's day? A day to reflect on what was and set intentions about what could be? What if, rather than waiting for a year to go by for us to let go of what has been, we completed each day and let it go? What if every day, what if every hour, we started the clock over again? How might our lives change?

In 2009 Kevin "Doc" Klein read a book called A Year To Live by Stephen Levine. "This book challenged me to live as if I only had one year left on earth," reflected Doc. "As part of this...

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YOU Are Needed

by Mark M Brown, HahnX Co-founder and author of Outward Bound Lessons To Live A Life of Leadership

Attention Outward Bound alumni, current and former staff, and all those who care about people and the planet:

 You may know the creation story of Outward Bound--of young merchant sailors perishing after their ships were sunk in the North Sea during World War II.  You may know the qualities Kurt Hahn extolled: "an enterprising curiosity, an indefatigable spirit, tenacity in pursuit, readiness for sensible self-denial, and above all, compassion."  

You may know the stories, but do you understand WHY? Why were you trained to put aside discomfort to embrace the challenges of an expedition? What did you learn about supporting your crew, serving on watch, reflecting during solo, and overcoming whatever adversity the circumstances of your expedition threw at you? And how did you--and how will you continue--to apply what you learned in service to others? That is, after...

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Let's Make Some Magic

by Mark M Brown, HahnX Co-founder and author of Outward Bound Lessons To Live A Life of Leadership

 I loved my years working at Outward Bound. I arrived at Homeplace on the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in mid-April. For many years I led an alumni  service week, putting winter gear away and preparing for the coming summer canoe season. The lakes were still frozen and we were always the first brigade into the BWCA via canoe, often dragging and poling our boats over the ice to our campsite. 

The first loon song was a sign that the season was finally shifting and one morning we'd awaken and the ice would be gone from Birch Lake. Staff would begin arriving for WFR recertifications and training, preparing for our summer season to launch after Memorial Day.

My summers were spent on the trail, as an assistant instructor, instructor, course director, and eventually a member of the Ely Summer Management Team. 

I headed south in late September, driving...

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Choose To Do Good

By Mark M Brown, HahnX co-founder and Author of Outward Bound Lessons To Live A Life of Leadership

After an amazing national book launch I was back in Hawaii preparing for a whole series of presentations when Covid hit. And George Floyd was murdered. And fires and floods and drought. And the attacks on our citizens as they marched for their rights, and the attack on our capital as we again attempted to keep this experiment called American Democracy alive. It can feel overwhelming to think about how much upheaval came at us in such a short time--and how much is still upon us.

I had a lot of time to reflect--on my life, and all of the challenges that our world seems to be facing. 

I've also thought about all of the amazing people I got to meet while traveling the country promoting Outward Bound Lessons, and a common theme that seemed to transpire from all those who had experienced Outward Bound-- particularly with those who had been instructors. We all so deeply miss...

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