In my first year of college, life could not be better. I was at a top-tier school on an academic scholarship and my dream of making the U-19 Canadian Rugby Team had just become a reality.
Then, seemingly out of the blue, I was hit with a crippling depression.
Suddenly, my anxiety stopped me from going to school and it stopped me from going to rugby practice. I dropped out of college and I was dropped from the rugby team. I became a shut-in in my parent’s house, unable to leave.
I slowly realized that I had been living the life I wanted other people to see, not the life I wanted for myself. In an attempt to re-set, I decided to only surround myself with people who inspired me and made a list of '100 things to do before you die' with three friends Jonnie, Dave and Duncan. We decided that for every bucket list item we accomplished, we would help a complete stranger accomplish something on their list.
We called our mission The Buried Life, after a 150 year-old poem which articulated our frustrations perfectly - our dreams felt buried.
The poem that inspired the name
"But often, in the world's most crowded streets,
But often, in the din of strife,
There rises an unspeakable desire
After knowledge of our buried life;"
— The Buried Life, Matthew Arnold, 1852
We called our mission The Buried Life, after a 150 year-old poem which articulated our frustrations perfectly - our dreams felt buried. We borrowed an RV, bought a second hand camera and hit the road for a two-week road trip to tackle our list of impossible dreams and help others. What happened next was completely unexpected. Total strangers reached out to help us with our bucket list, and also sent us their dreams asking for help. We had no idea the ripple effect our mission would have, ultimately inspiring millions to write their list and pursue their buried dreams.
To date, that two-week road trip has lasted over 10 years. And the list items that I was once convinced were impossible, have somehow been checked off the list. As a result, I now truly believe that anyone can do anything and I have seen how this belief changes how you make decisions and, ultimately, how you live your life. My goal is to instil this belief in you and prove that you are capable of the impossible.