Wild Spirit: How Adventure Feeds Success

Wild Spirit: How Adventure Feeds Success

By Luke Clark
Test yourself not just to push your limits, but to craft an unforgettable life, says adventurer Mandip Singh Soin

There is nothing like the call of the wild to motivate you to push forward in life — as one of India’s most famous mountaineers and adventurers can attest.

Now aged 58, and a fellow of the Royal Geographic Society, Mandip Singh Soin has spent his life chasing adventures in distant corners of his homeland — and then seeking to better protect the isolated spots he fell in love with along the way.

With mountain ascents that include being in the first Indian party to climb Mount Meru in the Indian Himalayas, his physical challenges have in turn helped him in the physical world. Mandip is the founder and managing director of Ibex Expeditions, and was the founding President of the Ecotourism Society of India. 

1. Test your body and spirit

For Mandip, early adventures had a profound effect on the way he approached his desk work as well, in terms of knowing how much he could push his limits. “That sort of experiential learning which you go through and apply back in life, is certainly a great help,” he shares. 

2. Mighty motivators

These mighty peaks had qualities he almost sought to emulate in some way himself. “Mountains have a lofty, steadfast and a majestic quality they exude: which is the embodiment one would like to manifest.”

3. Testing the team

Yet as he explains to India @Work, sometimes it is more about what the physical challenge brings out in your group. “The topping on the cake is when one is able to reach a summit with great teamwork,” he explains. “Adventure is always inspirational — and it has always left me begging for more.”

4. Glimpsing the eternal

He describes one of his most magical climbing moments: “Changing trails from the Indian Himalaya to Patagonia in Chile, we had a great day trek to the base of the Torres de Paine towers. The weather was overcast, cloudy and snowing — but all of a sudden the weather broke and we were able to see the Towers in their full glory,” he describes. “That was an unforgettable moment.”

5. Packing secrets

Moving from the divine to the quirky, we asked Mandip for two essential packing secrets for every adventure. “I always take a mosquito net to wear over my face — as one never knows what might bite me,” he grins.

“Then another one is a waterproof diary so you can scribble down the price of a beer — or remember how to say hello in a local language.”

6. Choose your team

Lastly, he says one of the secrets to meaningful expeditions lies in selecting your tour party carefully, specifically those with the right attitude. “Travelling in a kindred group is a treat,” he suggests. “If you’re all really positive, then I think everyone focuses on the quality of the journey.”

Image Courtesy of Mandip Singh Soin