Find your FIRE

Well hellooooooo you young, spritely bunch. As I’m sitting on a crowded train home from a day of work, uni, and Melbourne’s unpredictable weather, I’m thinking about all of you (aww cute I know). Well actually, I’ll admit, I’m thinking about Scientology, random I know, but I saw Louis Thereoux’s documentary last week (go see it, seriously!) and it got me thinking… About how our minds are such powerful things and can achieve some really big stuff. (I’m now trying to train my mind to be a Jedi master in not eating cake.. That can work right??)

But i think the whole topic of attitude and realising what your mind and body is capable of segways perfectly into the little guest I’ve welcomed to the yTalker club this week. (I know, pat on the back for not even planning this deliberately). 

Bartholomew Walsh is a living legend of the yTeam. Beginning his yLead journey in 2008 (some of you were still in Primary School, yeah this just got real) in Melbourne, this country VIC boss has shone across Aus and NZ with yLead! (He was also my mentor when I was a participant in 2012.. Talk about a lineage of greatness!) After an unexpected turn in his health, Bart has battled through challenges to come out stronger and more determined then ever! 

I asked Bart to write free and impart any goodness he had to offer (which is a lot FYI). Brace yourselves…

Let me ask you something. And let’s be honest here. I don’t have time for dishonesty.
Do you walk your talk?
Do you practice what you preach?
And do you validate every statement you make with a bigger and bolder actions?
I can definitively and objectively say yes I do.
However, it is becoming terrifyingly more apparent that 99.9% of people don’t. This breaks my heart.
Let me give you some context. I’m staring down the barrel of a second jaw reconstruction. Something that will not only cripple my body even more than it is, but something that will stretch my resilience to a point of limitless abandon. The saving grace? No cancer this time around. That battle is seemingly over.
I’m lucky.
I have been gifted a particular wisdom through some unfortunate adversity. And from what Kershaw has taught me, when you are gifted with something special, you share it sucka. This is something that I want to share with you now.
Hear these words with your heart, not your ears.

You need fire.

We know we need to be a spark that ignites a blaze, but shit son, if you don’t take that blaze and let it envelop every corner of your being, you are destined for that 99.9%. This blaze is your passion.
We often talk about passion being the thing that gets you out of bed in the morning, but how many of you can honestly say they have such a rich thing in your life? And I don’t want to hear the things we hear about year, after year at conference. Yes, I have an abundance of respect for those who want to be teachers and doctors, but do you really want to develop young brains through education, or are you doing it because someone else has done it and said it was rewarding?
I don’t want you to feel bad if you don’t have that thing that makes your heart explode when you talk about it. You just haven’t found it yet. I do however want you to do one thing for me;

Don’t ever stop searching for it. As soon as you settle for the ordinary, you limit your potential. As soon as you settle for whatever everyone else is doing, you lose you.

The best example is in the city at 8:30am. Have a look at the people with headphones in, heading to work to spend another day indoors pressing buttons on an arbitrary piece of technology. We are not on this earth to do this.
On the flip side you can tell the people that have their fire. They don’t work a day in their lives. They have a genuine care and love when they talk to you, and they are, wait for it… Happy!
Guys, I implore, beg and plead you;
Never settle for ordinary, and find your fire. Then let that sucker validate every statement you make with bigger and bolder actions.
I’m lucky.
There are so many things that should snuff my fire; operations, medications, therapy, but man, my fire is so damn enormous nothing will shut this baby down. I choose to be bigger than the roadblocks.
 I live to make people healthier physically, nutritionally and spiritually. I live to change paradigms and challenge the norm.
Over the past few days I travelled to Indonesia to partake in the inaugural Tough Mudder Indonesia. 7 days later I will be in Malaysia to tackle the Malaysian Spartan Beast. These are half marathon obstacle courses, compiling of 30kg sandbag carries, 3 metre walls and all the while being in the jungle. Two years ago the doctors said I would never run again.

Never settle for ordinary,

Walk your talk,

Validate every statement you make with bigger actions.

Now stop.
Don’t let this article be one of the handful you read on Facebook each week and then forget.
If you are with me, and if you are with yLead, let this be a turning point.
Stop and remember that feeling you had when you left conference or in-school program. That’s the fire. Don’t ever forget that feeling. Let it sit in you, then get out there and change lives.
Not tomorrow, now.
It’s your turn to be lucky.


I told you he was good didn’t I! Bart, thank you. For rekindling the fire that’s already burning within each of us. You bring so much inspiration and value to the yTeam. We’ll be cheering for you all across Aus & NZ when you nail your upcoming competitions!!


Oh yeah, hey, I’m still here. I couldn’t leave without giving a shout out to the incredible yTeamer’s that volunteered at In School’s this fortnight…

Nathan Bassett, Kelly Goatham & Taylor Cross!



3rd October – St Columba’s College, VIC (Yr 12) –

5th October – Loreto College, QLD (Yr 11) – Xanthia Bourdaniotis, Taylor Cross

7th October – St Ursula’s College (Toowoomba) QLD (Yr 9) – Taylor Cross

10th October – Redcliffe SHS, QLD (Yr 8 & 11 Leaders) – Kelly Goatham

10th October – Mt Gravatt SHS, QLD (Yr 11) – Curt McLachlan

10th October – The Gap SHS, QLD (Yr 11) – Curt McLachlan

11th October – Gold Coast City Council Junior Leaders Day, QLD – Tiana Reardon, Phil  Choi, Taylor Cross

12th October – QASMT, QLD (SRC) – Taylor Cross

12th October – Mirani SHS, QLD (Yr 6 – 11) –

13th October – Roseville College, NSW (Yr 12) –

13th October – Our Lady of Mercy College, NSW (Yr 9) –

14th October – Mercy Catholic College, NSW (Yr 9) –

14th October – St Ursula’s College (Toowoomba) QLD (Yr 7) –

Well friends, I know I’m feeling fired up and ready to tackle each day with passion. What’s the reason YOU get up each morning??

So much love always and forever, A-Par xxx


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