(Dare to Dream) Henry Worsley: The Man Who Trekked the Antarctica…Almost

Henry Worsley: Lessons From the Man Who Trekked the Antarctica

I love Henry Worsley.

Henry Worsley

And I did not even know he existed until a year and a month ago (or thereabouts). You may be wondering who this man is.

He was the man who attempted to cross the Antarctica, unaided and unsupported.

I wished he had succeeded, unfortunately he never made it through as his organs shut down on him due to complications arising from his gallant attempt.

You may wonder why this is worthy of a post here after a year as I am not related to Henry, neither was he my friend or a friend of any of my friends.

His story resonated deeply with me and pulled a chord. Or two. Still does.

He was a parent for one. He had a wife and two children who all loved him and were rooting for him along with the rest of the world.

Even now, I hope they remember him always with a smile playing on their lips.

I hope they are proud of his feat even though his body shut down on him and the world lost him, 48km / 30miles shy of the finish line when the temperatures fell dangerously low (below 40degrees Celcius).

He is British, I am Nigerian but I am proud of him.

Okay. Why am I even posting this after 1 year?

Probably because I had recently been thinking of dreams and goals and actualizations, etc etc.

(Hint: this post had been lying in the draft folder since the week he died!!)

You see, my little boy asked me some days after he died (out of the blues as usual) whether the Antartica could be flooded just like ‘America’ (Some parts of America got flooded around that same period)….I said no…I might be wrong.

I mean, isn’t the Antarctica meant to be icy? So what business does any flood have over there? Except of course the flood is icy as well, in which case it would cease being a flood. Not making much sense, I know.

But there are more than one zillion unflooded Antarctica out there as there are many Henrys, like You and I.

I digress.

When the Henry Worsley’s story broke in 2016, I wondered where one gets the strength to go on such seemingly out-of-reach expeditions.

Pause. Take a deep breathe.

Now ask yourself what drives a human being across a continent, alone for 70+ days?

Maybe you know, like I do that whatever our minds can conceive is halfway to being achieved. It all really starts from the mind -that fertile land where ideas are birthed (as well as where successes and failures are conceived)

Note that Henry did not just set off on a whim of something nice out there to be conquered.

He reportedly planned thoroughly and meticulously and even raised a sizable sum of money for a Fund that supports injured service men and women.

He was a former army officer so he had a good idea of what was out there on the Antarctica.

A resolution which became a goal that must be achieved.

He dared to dream, and to work and walk his dreams.

We all dream. And pen down our goals and visions from time to time but ‘working and walking’ our dreams is where the juice lies and that is where we (read: I) often fall short.

Last year, I had several ‘dreams’, I still do.

You see, we all want to get to our destinations, to leave our footsteps on the sands of time but without doing the work and walk- mileage, guaranteed to get us there.

I want to change that, this year. Like Henry.

For me, Henry did not fail. He saw the Summit but his body unfortunately failed him and I still am humbled by his feat even as I pondered on my own life. He made history.

His final (recorded) words before being airlifted to an hospital where he died in Chile:

“My summit is just out of reach, having been a career soldier for 36 years and recently retired, it has been a way of giving back to those far less fortunate than me.”

What a man..and what a way to bow out!

Beyond glamorizing his feat, some of the Key lessons for me from Henry Worsley which I want to remember as I walk through 2017:
  • Dare to dream
  • Let your dreams be bigger than you
  • If your mind can conceive it, your mind can also drive your body to achieve it or stifle it!
  • Plan, plan and plan but do not spend your lifetime planning,
  • ‘Work and walk’ your dream
  • In walking, know when to call for help
  • Get as much help as required to achieve success
  • You do not need to work and walk unaided.
  • Even after dreaming, working and walking, things may still go wrong along the way
  • Do not give up if you still have breathe in you, go back, re-strategize, continue on your ‘way’!

Are you dreaming yet?

PS: Hope 2017 is beginning to take shape for you..

PPS: Do have a ‘dreamfilled’ week.



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Biola Leye

Wife, mother, writer, leader, entrepreneur and lover of all things good.

One thought on “(Dare to Dream) Henry Worsley: The Man Who Trekked the Antarctica…Almost

  • February 6, 2017 at 4:47 pm

    When I read about it, I too wondered what gives such people this forceful drive to do things the average human being on the street will not think of?
    What captured me most is that; HE PREPARED TOWARDS IT!
    So dreams can take a while to actualize and not to be rushed in…maybe the timing will not be right, or the mind and body is not yet ready.
    He was a brave, courageous and gallant soldier and man.
    To your question … nay! Just trying to take a day at a time.


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