Episode 57:

Resilience, Perseverance, Focus and Grit. Planning for success in your Travel Business, with Adventurer & Entrepreneur James Castrission

You can listen directly here. 

Our guest for today is a world-renown professional adventurer who in 2008 became the first person to kayak across the Tasman Sea and two years after, completed the longest unsupported polar expedition of all time. None other than the Australian Explorer James Castrission! 

In this episode, James talks about the three elements we should work on to ensure success in our business now and in the future. 

Focus, Language, and Physiology.

FOCUS on the things we can control and not on those that we can't. LANGUAGE that we use inside our travel business to communicate not only with our clients but also with our team members. And lastly, to always have a laugh no matter what situation you are in. 

These are three simple things that we may have taken for granted in our travel agent business. But in reality, these 3 gives so much impact on our business success. 

James also shares about Resilience and Grit as one of those traits that have been shown to be one of the key drivers of success for both individuals and companies. 

Resilience and Grit are also something that we have all witnessed in the travel community this past two years. We talk about how these two have helped so many travel agent business owners rise again amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Knowing where to put your focus on, looking into your language, having fun, reconnecting and reaching out are some of the brilliant things that you can do right now and always to continue to improve your travel agent business. 

We’d also love to have you in the Achievers in Travel - Facebook group, make sure you join the FREE community. Achievers in Travel - Accountability group.

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Links Mentioned in the Episode

Books by James Castrission: 

Crossing the Ditch  

Extreme South 


My Adventure Group Instagram Page

My Adventure Group Facebook Page

My Adventure Group LinkedIn Page

My Adventure Group Website

Quotes from this Episode

“That’s what adventure is all about. Knowing real, authentic human emotions” - James Castrission

“This is the time to turn inward to people to reach out to connect to support each other” - James Castrission

“Resilience and Grit are about how we adapt and how we overcome the challenges we all face in our day to day lives”. - James Castrission 
“When times are tough and with an environment like we’re dealing with at the moment, it is so critical that we focus on the things that we can actually control”. - James Castrission

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Show Transcription:

Announcer: Welcome to Travel Agent Achievers, the place to learn how to grow your travel business and have fun with it. Join Roslyn and her guests as they walk you through proven steps to a fulfilling and profitable business.


Ros: Welcome back Travel Agent Achievers, another special episode for you today with a very special guest, James Castrission. I'll give you a bit of an intro into who he is before we kick off the conversation, because he's somebody that I think absolutely wow, the amount of things that he's achieved in his lifetime as an adventurer, but also in business is absolutely incredible. And I hope he provides some inspiration to you today. 


So James Castrission is a record-breaking Australian Explorer, and he's one of the few extreme adventures with a senior corporate background. From his work as a Senior Management Consultant at Deloitte and experience leading expeditions to the most hostile corners of the planet. James understands that culture eats strategy for breakfast. He also understands that in today's rapidly changing business environment, your company faces constant challenge challenges with team cohesion, cohesion and also alignment challenges that old methods of team building as such, simply don't address and he believes that a different approach is needed through two world-first feet completed with his best mate Jonesy, crossing the Tasman and assisted in nothing but a kayak and then also completing the longest polar expedition of all time, James learned that the building blocks of trust are forged in shared real experiences. 


These lessons are brought to life in his keynote speeches, workshops, and transformational adventure programmes which I absolutely love. These lessons could elevate not only yourself but also your company to new levels of morale and growth. In 2013, James founded my adventure group, a provider of corporate adventure based development programmes that harness lessons learned from the most hostile environments on Earth to strengthen teams and develop competitive advantage in organisations. 


We're going to talk a little bit about some of the things that I've done with him as well. So you're going to love those. I am not one to be putting up a tent. Let me just share that. So if you want to be a better leader, you want to grow your team's capabilities or experience one of the most, you know of Australia's most renowned keynote speakers, then my friend James castration, and my adventure group might just be what you're looking for, if you're running at an event in the future. 


I'm so delighted about what you're about to listen to. Alright, everybody, my very special guest, James acoustician Welcome to the travel agent achievers podcast. I am so excited that you and I are finally doing this. We've been meaning and talking about it for the last couple of years. So thank you so much for being here.


James: I am equally as excited because I can't wait to get into it.

Ros: So you and I were just talking about something. And before we started recording this podcast, three words that you said excitable risk-takers. And I would have to say that that is you in a nutshell. Would you agree with me on that? Or no?


James:  Ah, possibly I actually, a lot of people laugh. And maybe when you get to the end of this little interview that we do together, I'll let you make the judgement. But I actually consider myself quite risk-averse. To have pulled off the expedition that I have, if it was about fully cigarette adventures wouldn't have lasted very long. They were meticulously paired, and there was a lot of work on risk management. And so yeah, I actually consider myself quite risk-averse, which a lot of people scoff and laugh at when I say it.


Ros: YeahI but I love that you've gone into that. And can we come back to risk management because I think what you've just said being risk averse, and so prepared and organised in all of your adventures and the things that you've done. I have been talking about travel professionals globally, we've become risk management experts as well. 


So reducing the risk for clients to travel over the last 18 months and I've sprouted it to my clients and said, you know, we are now the risk management experts. We do what we can in order to get you home. So welcome back to that. But I'd love for you just to share a little bit about your background. I know you've come from a corporate background, you've done the adventurer thing, you've moved into something else. Would you mind just sharing a little bit about yourself and who you are and what you've done?


James: Yeah, sure. So I'll give it a quick dirty overview. So I grew up in Sydney, came out of Sydney, to the Commerce degree started working in chartered accounting and corporate consulting. And I guess my passion and love was always travel and adventure. And I didn't really think that you could do it as a job. 


And so on the weekends, I'd go absolutely nuts with friends and with leave, start doing expeditions and trips around the place down the length, the Murray River. So for those of you overseas, that's Australia's longest river, that's about two and a half 1000 kilometers. Now one of the pedals down there before they jumped in a double kayak with my best mate, we paddled from mainland Australia and Tasmania.


And these trips start to get bigger. And that's I guess, where I started find myself and who I was and what I loved to do in the world, and then culminated in me committing, resigning from my day job and seeing whether it was possible to pull off some big world first adventures and I guess condensing 10 years of my life into 30 seconds. We pushed out away from Australia, trying to be the first people to ever paddle a kite from Australia to New Zealand. 


It had never been done 2200 kilometers across one of the most violent stretches of ocean in the world. 62 days later, in our tiny little kayak, we pulled into the shore of New Zealand to the most incredible welcome, where there were well over 30,000 people on the beach to greatness in. And that was, I guess, my first big taste of adventure. And then a few years later after that, back that up with a big roll first down in Antarctica of 89 days. And so during these big expeditions, I've learned a lot about myself. And on the back of them was given the opportunity to share these lessons with other people through conferences, and I'm through the business around these days, which is my adventure group.


Ros: You've just given me goosebumps all over again, James. Now, I've heard you speak on numerous occasions, both in Australia and internationally. And I you know, I'm so honoured that you're here because what you have achieved, like it's no mean feat. It's it's nothing small and just hearing you say that, Oh, yeah, you know, kayaked 2200 kilometres across the Tasman, from Australia to New Zealand solo unassisted. Like for you, it just sounds like and I know that you said it all in a couple of minutes. 


But it sounds like oh, yeah, that's what I've done. And I'm on to the next thing. For me, watching that journey. Like it almost brought tears back to my eyes. Because seeing that process and how long it took you to not only get organised and make it happen, but then that whole journey with you and Jonesy. I mean, that's just amazing stuff. So congratulations on everything that you've achieved. And by completing these adventures, I was thinking earlier about my own experiences. And as travel advisors, you know, we get to go to some incredible places, and we get to experience some amazing things. We have our own adventures in a way. And my husband teases me now and he's like, Well, Robert, let's go camping. And I'm like, is there a Shangri La close by. 


So, you know, he teases me about those things. But I know in my early 20s, I cycled through Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand. I would love to say it was solo and unassisted. But I went with a girlfriend. And I did cheat once by putting our bicycles on the back of a tool because a storm was about to hit and I was like, we've already fallen off in the rain once not going to do it again. 


So you know, we didn't actually do it solo on assisted. But then the adventure side of stuff is I think there's something that drives people and the excitement like do you get that same excitement talking about your experiences now with doing that kayaking trip? Or is like like, oh my gosh, remember when the shot came? Or can you believe we then circled around and around and around and got caught up in our own store? Like do your reminisce on those times, as well as Antarctica and think about the actual incredible experience that it has been?


James: Absolutely. And that's what I love doing when I share these stories with people around the world. But I guess what's more powerful to me these days is actually seeing other people live those adventures because at the end of the day, adventure is a relative term and it means something different for all of us for one person in the world. Cycling in Cambodia, and Laos is the most wild thing that someone will ever do in their life, but for others, it might be dangling off the 200 metre cliff and so to be able to do that with my friends, my family my two kids, they These days, but more importantly, with corporate groups around the place, and to see people pushing themselves out of their comfort zone. And just experiencing the beauty of push of, you know, these big adventures or small Adventures is just awesome. 


Ros: Yeah. Sp now talking about that dangling, hang on a second 200 metres off a cliff. So I've watched HSAs. And I've seen the crazy things that they do. You live up in the beautiful blue mountains, and you've got an incredible property up there that you actually now post experiences. Right. Can you tell us a bit about what my venture group now does with the travel side of things?


James: Yeah, sure. So I, you know, I've been keynote speaking for 12 years now, I've spoken in 30 countries and close to half a million people all around the globe. So all kinds of audiences and normally pre COVID, it was one or two conferences a week somewhere in the world that I was travelling to, to speak at, which is an amazing opportunity. 


But at the same time, I was also seeing at these conferences, what I guess the PCOS and the event organisers were doing to try and build teams to build trust, build collaboration, to build teamwork. And I looked at a lot of the team building activities, and I kind of felt that they were, and I'm not being, I guess, dismissive or rude to anyone, but I kind of felt that they were activities that you do at my six year olds birthday party, not with senior corporate leaders, or, you know, amazing corporates from around the world. 


And then I looked at, I guess, the relationships and the elements that were formed on an adventure programme. And I said, Well, I wanted to start a business running corporate experiences, and using adventure as a tool to build teams. And so I started out with this hypothesis, I didn't know if anyone would go for it. 


And, you know, obviously COVID, taken hit like many of you guys, but it's been an incredible journey, sharing adventure with different groups, and just seeing how powerful it is, and bringing people together. Because at the end of the day, when you're on the side of the cliff, and you're pushing yourself outside your comfort zone, you show real, authentic human emotions to the people around you something that a couple of bowls of wine, or sitting around, you know, fix up dinner don't doesn't quite do when someone's showing real human emotion, that doesn't matter what you think of them in the office, and you connect with that person. 


And that's what adventure is all about connecting people, and getting people to see what they are actually capable of as human beings.


Ros: That's awesome. I'm scared of heights, and I know that you would, you're quite a gentle and encouraging person. So it's not like, hey, just jump off that they go over there. So I mean, working with so many different people. 


Now, what are some of the things that you see in that human behaviour, when they are experiencing these activities? So the sorts of things that they do add sailing, I'm guessing by going over the mountain and canyoneering, I know that they do as well. So getting into the water and climbing through some really awkward places, but what are the emotions that you see come out in people? And how is that human connection then? Stronger? Like, how, how does that experience work for you?


James: Okay, so first up, I guess our experiences are completely tailored to the group and to the individuals in that group. So it's not just a one fit shop for everybody to do exactly the same programme. And a few years ago, we had a large Indian group from China, there were 300 delegates that came over, and we had them up in our camp. Now, a lot of those guys had a they couldn't speak English, they couldn't swim. 


And see some of them had never seen stars in their life before, because it's from big cities where there's too much smaller than light pollution. So the nipson stars, so for them to push themselves out of their comfort zone, to take them for a beautiful walk up in the Blue Mountains. That was the craziest, wildest thing they have ever done in their life before. We didn't see any drop here. 


So that's one end of the spectrum. At the other end of the spectrum. You know, I posted NFL players and some billionaires from the US. And so one of the NFL players, a guy called Larry Fitzgerald, is a big name over there in the US. He was amazing. And he had quite a high risk tolerance. The stuff I did with him was completely different to other clients, because he just had that physical capability, that aptitude for adventure. 


He was really quite proficient out there as well. So the cliffs and the canyons that are throwing him down were completely different to what I would do with another group. So it's all about finding the right experience for people and then bundling that up because it's all well and good to push people out of their comfort zone. 


But a big part of their programmes is then bringing them back to an area where they feel safe. And so we've got an amazing glamping camp set up, where people can really relax in air conditioned bathrooms, private chef cooking for them. So just an incredible high end experience at the end of the day that helped really anchor those connections that were built through the day.


Ros: Yeah, you just touched on glamping experiences. I am now used to tents. And you have air conditioning and toilets and all the rest of it. So it is a completely different experience. One of the workshops that I've been with you was where you did some team building and to correct me if I'm wrong, that my experience there was to bring everybody together. And communication was a big deal. We had to learn to communicate with each other. And we had to put up a tent. My team failed, failed miserably. And I think we missed the time. Nobody really knew what they were doing. There wasn't a leader in the group, and we all kind of fumbled. And, you know, everyone else sort of had a bit of a giggle. But those sorts of experiences bring out, you know, different personalities and people as well. And teamwork. So when you've got those in person, so they're my venture group going experience, those sorts of things, you also run workshops. And that is a similar sort of team building exercise where people are getting out of their comfort zone as well, would you say?


James: Yes, Summit? I mean, again, it really depends on the outcomes that we're wanting to drive with that particular group. So some of them Yes, it is pushing them out of their comfort zone. But for others, it's more around, you know, providing lessons and learnings around resilience about trust, grit, risk management, I've got a workshop on that as well. So there's a whole lot of different workshops, it's about finding and matching it up to the right group.


Ros: Yeah. So resilience and grit. I think that this is an incredible topic, but also one that's really timely, right now. Over the last 18 months, the travel industry, as you know, and you've also experienced with your own experiences has been decimated. You know, we've and I've personally, you know, cried many tears. Working with travel professionals all over the world crushes my heart, because I want to help as many people as I can. And I want to see everybody come through this time and be stronger, and you know, better or they do and love the industry. 


But it's also quite heavy at times. And one thing that I'm seeing right now is a lot of caution and nervousness about what can potentially happen in the future. But I know you talk about resilience and grit, I see those as huge strengths for people to have, can you tell us a little bit more about that, and how that comes into play with what you do.


James: So I guess it's one of those human traits and one of those human qualities that all of us can constantly develop . It's a learned skill, it's not something we're just born with. And so a lot of people just think that some people are more resilient or greedy than others and you've got what you've got in the bank and get upset. But it's definitely a skill set that can be developed. And, as you said, Rise through these kinds of times, that's when we really need to fall on it. You know, for those of us living in Australia, we really have lived through one of the most incredibly prosperous times in humanity in an amazing country where there's been positive economic growth, the last 25 odd years, we live in an amazing country, both people and that's super safe, and all those great things. And this is probably being for a lot of us the first real test of resilience so well and good to talk about either as a theoretical term or even in the context of pushing yourself on an Antarctic Expedition or at least 56 kilos of weight. 


That's all well and good talking about in that context. But at the end of the day, it's about how we adapt and how we overcome the challenges we all face in our day to day lives. And for all of us. Although I'm not a travel agent, I'm closely connected to your industry. And I can say I can say we have been absolutely decimated in the last 18 months. And for those of you that do anything in regional travel in New South Wales, we can go pre COVID Because we had those massive bushfires that knocked out three or four months of work for a lot of us as well. 


And so it has been a time where it has been incredibly testing. And grit is essentially the ability to be able to bounce back from difficult and challenging situations. And that is one of those traits that has been shown to be one of the key drivers of success for both individuals and companies.


Ros: Yeah, so I know that you have and we'll link to it as well. in the show notes for people about, can you last five minutes and the test that you have? And you've got a video around this by running on a treadmill? And can you give us some examples? or protect potentially even some tips like what sort of things can we do? Or to strengthen our resilience muscles? Or, you know, you say it's a learned trait? How can we learn these sorts of things if we don't necessarily have it ingrained in us initially?


James: Yeah awesome. Awesome, guys, I'd love to spend the whole day with you, yeah, right. Okay, we need to do that. And we'll just move the forward button and try to make these a little bit more digestible. But something I talk about with groups, and it's been very helpful for me in some of these hostile environments around the planet, but I know has also been a huge shock to a lot of people around the world over the last 18 months, is something called the principal gross growth. 


So there's three different drivers and three elements that we can all think about. The first one is where our focus  is, it is so easy to focus on things that we can't control, focus on things that are going on that are outside of our circle of influence, things like what's been reported on news.com. Au, what's been reported on social media, how much toilet paper there is at the local supermarket, these are all things to be aware of. But if we completely obsess over them, the things that we can't control, we feel like we're coming out of the driver's seat, and we're on this crazy ride, that we've got nothing to do, we've got no control, hence, the angst that then comes with it. 


So you know, when, when times are tough, and with an environment like we're dealing with at the moment, it is so critical that we focus on the things that we can actually control. So you know, what are we doing with our health? How are we, you know, what kind of projects can we actually work on through this period of time? And for me, although from a delivery perspective, I haven't been incredibly effective. 


And I haven't been traveling to two conferences a week and running seasons of this is my adventure camp. This has been one of the busiest periods of my life, because it's been an opportunity to work on a whole lot of projects that I just can't do normally. So, you know, just changing that context from, I don't have that face to face work to this is amazing. All those things that I've been kicking down the road and not wanting to do for years or haven't had to do. 


This is the time to do it. And it will pay dividends when the world opens up again. So the first one is focus. The next one that is quite closely linked to it is the language that we're using, both with ourselves and our team. Again, it's very easy to externalize responsibility, what's going on in the world? You know, why did this happen to me? Why am I in the travel industry and try to externalize that and be apathetic? Again, when you put yourself in the driver's seat, and you change that framing and that wording, so that empowers you so that you are actually in the driver's seat, you feel a whole lot more in control. And then the third element that is super important, we've got to keep on having fun. 


And so I caught physiology Well, the one thing we can control the matter how bad things are looking is what's going on in our face. And, you know, research time and time again, has shown that just by putting a smile on your face and having a laugh, it completely changes your outlook on a situation or on a day. And on these big expeditions, like to goudarzi mates, we constantly took the piss I have said on this podcast. We told jokes. You know, no matter how bad things felt, we always tried to make ourselves laugh. And it's something that we can all control through this period of time. 


So there are three elements: focus, physiology, and language. And then the fourth thing that I often like to share as well, again, I said I could have talked on this per day. And you could probably get that feeling from the way I'm rambling on at the moment, Ros. But the fourth, the fourth element is, you know, it's so common, when times are tough to do what we just need to survive, and we push people away. 


This is the time to turn inward to people to reach out to connect to support each other. And that is what will make the big difference in us all getting through as an industry and as colleagues, it doesn't matter. If people or competitors are really connecting through these times we can achieve so much more together than we can on their own. 


Ros:  Yeah I love that last one. That's definitely one that's quite close to my heart. And one thing that I have seen in the travel industry is that we've come so far and are a lot more connected these days. They used to be you know, they're quite competitive, you know, can't share this information, can't talk to this person, they might steal a client. There's going to be plenty of business to go around. 


But from a connection point of view we are we are much stronger when we stick together and we're able to help each other that's also really rewarding and ourselves and it's one thing that I'm incredibly proud of with the travel agent Achieva immunity is that we have come together and supported one another and been there. 


When somebody needs help on a particular thing, whether it is around an airline contact or, you know, what email to send out to clients, or what are some ideas that we can share to connect and, you know, reaffirm relationships with our clients, there's been so much that we have been able to control as you say, so that focus is really important straight up, what can you focus on? 


What can you be doing right now in order to get through, because there is so much unknown. And I know that you and I spoke, you know, just after COVID, hit here in Australia, and the borders closed, and I reached out and we had a conversation, you know, around how you were going. And I said, Look, if there's anything that you need, let me know, I'm here to support you in any way I possibly can. So over the last 18 months, what have you been working on? What have you been doing, because you can't travel internationally, can't travel internationally, come bring large groups of people together for those here in Australia? 


James: Well, up until now, hopefully, things will change in 2022. So I guess my focus has been the first area was developing a whole lot of systems and processes that I knew would hold me in good stead, but I just never had the time to develop them. And so literally having 18 months to build that type format, I just know how much that's going to provide value. And when I get back to being operational, there's three or 400 systems that have now developed videos. All online staff can access it nice and easily. It's an awesome, awesome resource. 


So that's the first thing I've been focused on. The second thing was developing some of my marketing as well. So in the past, for me, it's always just been kind of inbound. I go to a conference, a bit of word of mouth, one person will talk to another. And I'd have a couple of inquiries after that, with the period that we've been through. That's an area that I've had to focus on to get myself back out there again. 


And so, you know, I've developed a whole lot of resources, like a magazine that I didn't always want to do, but didn't actually have available, I've been able to outsource some of my staff. And so one of the reasons why I haven't done this podcast, which was 12 or 18 months ago, is normally I've been running around like a blue ass fly, trying to stay on top of things can't manage things properly, things get slipped, things fall to the backburner can't get on top of things. 


And so by having this time to have planned out the systems I brought on an amazing assistant over the Philippines, it's helping me manage my time much, much better than I could do on my own. I now have a way to be able to have conversations like the one I have with you today. Right? So there's some things from a work perspective. 


From a personal perspective, I feel like you know, getting up in the morning and doing some form of vigorous exercise was really important for my mental health through this period of time. And so, me being me, I just set myself the goal that I wanted to do an Ironman Triathlon, at some point when the world opened back up again. 


So I hadn't over the last few years done much pipelining, much swimming, or a little bit of running here and there. And so I signed up for an Ironman and started training in triathlons. And so that couple of hours in the morning before the kids woke up, before life started, it just got the day started on my terms, and I felt like I was in control. And so that was a really great little anchor that I've had. 


And I was lucky enough before our most recent lockdown to get up to Cannes back in June, and rice race I'm making so for those of you that don't know an Ironman is basically a 3.8 kilometer swim and an 80 kilometer on the bike and then finished it off with a marathon at the end. And so I was able to raise that up, they're feeling the fetus I've never felt. And so that's kind of what I've been up to.


Ros: She's just crazy. And I love that you did that. I was looking forward to seeing you in Port Macquarie but unfortunately, they did call the Port Macquarie triathlon off, which is where I live due to COVID. But did you know that there is another one in southwest rocks in February and it also has kids? It's the Milo triathlon.


James: That sounds awesome. We might have to get up to that one.


Ros: I know, TVA mail with those details, because I know how old are your kids now?


James: Baby? That sounds amazing. How old are they? six and nine?


Ros:  Oh my gosh, yes, perfect age. They were a little weighed, I swear cycle as well. And a little run, oh my gosh. Okay, I will send you the details about that later on. We'll make sure that our kids are involved because it's gonna be amazing. 


So I love the focus. So come back to that, focus on the language, have fun, reach out and connect. 


Those are all brilliant things that we can be doing right now and even into the future. It's not something just to start and stop and that's it and taking care of our health things that we can control. And coming back to risk management so as I said, in the travel industry, a lot of work that has been done over the last 18 months has been repatriation, and Bringing Families Home and connecting with one another as well as some travel because there have been some people that have been able to travel. 


But with regards to risk management, with your trip to New Zealand, and then the second big adventure to Antarctica, risk management became quite a big deal for you guys. And I know that you spend a lot of time on this, would you say that there was more time on risk management than other planning areas


James: 100%. In fact, I often say that 99% of our success was in the planning phase, and 1% was in the execution. And so a big part of that 99% was the risk management, it was figuring out how we could actually achieve this thing. 


With all the systems or processes that we'd need to not only get ready for the trip itself, but to survive these environments, because at the end of the day, the whole thing about adventure is that it's an activity with an unknown outcome. 


We could plan and plan and plan but we did not know what we're going to be faced with out there, we did not know that we were going to be stuck in a two week circle in the middle of Tasman Sea, or that we were going to have sharks come up and start slapping us around one night. So these are all things that we need contingencies for. And we needed flexibility in our plans. But we did need plans there. They gave us the ability to adapt when these things did actually pop up in her eyes.


Ros: Yeah, one big thing that I took away from your planning stages as well is that you didn't have a family member, you know, on the end of the emergency call or to tell you about what might be coming up. So from a travel point of view, this is where I've seen clients utilize our services and our experience as advisors, because we're impartial. And we can make informed factual decisions that aren't emotionally charged, in a way. So you had a similar experience as well. Right?


James: We did exactly the same thing on our expeditions. And for the reasons why you've outlined. That's why we had an external party that was our support team. They're able to emotionally distance themselves, and, you know, stick to what our plan was, and be more robust with, I guess, their decision making. Yeah, so cool.


Ros: So now, as we come through this time, as we move into 2022, what is on the cards for you, James, I know you've been doing a lot of virtual events and speaking so what's next?


James: So the virtual has been amazing. And it's really opened up some opportunities that wouldn't have been there a couple of years ago. And for us as an industry. Now, there's always going to be a need and a want for people to get together. I think one thing that we've learned is that yes, we're very lucky for the communication that we've got these days. But humans are a social beast and that we love that connection. 


So I don't think that elements are going to change. But I think an element of virtual is going to be there to stay. And so I've been doing a lot of virtual deliveries in the last probably six months. It's pretty much crescendo. A lot more than what I was doing last year, lots of studio deliveries. And I think there's always going to be a hybrid element to most events as well, where people will be dialing in. And so it's been about adapting and trying to figure out the best practice to deliver those presentations. So coming into 2022, if we'd had this call three days ago, I would have said that we post COVID. 


And we're all vaccinated and lost. Let the good times roll baby. rearing its ugly head and, you know, we're dealing again with change, and we're dealing with uncertainty. I'm not sure if that was during this interview week before Christmas. And I had a keynote organized for next week, and that whole conference was canceled with a lot of information that is coming a lot at the moment. 


So we're constantly having to deal with change, I think change is here to stay. In fact, I think the amount of change in the rapidness of that change is only going to keep on increasing. And I hope that doesn't get anyone down. But it just means that we need to be able to adapt, we need to focus on what we can control. And yet, the freedoms will come back eventually. And I think we just need to make sure we're in a position to be able to jump on them when they actually do.


Ros: Yeah, absolutely. Awesome. All right. So if anybody would love to know more about you, which I highly recommend, people, you know, get the book, watch videos, I've got all of it and listen to some of James's talks. If you get the opportunity to be in a workshop with him or you want to organize your own then The best ways to connect with you would be through Instagram and Facebook or on your website dates, which is all my adventure group, right? 


James: Yep. My adventure group.com. Today, you or the same handles on all the socials would love to stay in contact. And we'd love to know how you're going as well. So drop me a line. Let me know how you've been affected in the last 12 to 18 months. And I'd love to send contact with you.


Ros: That's awesome. All right. Well, thank you so much for being here with me today, James, I really appreciate your insight. I am so proud of you. And not just for the incredible adventures that you've had. And for, you know, the time that I've known you, but even just over the last 18 months, you've certainly put what you talk about into practice, you have knuckle down, you've reached out to the people that can help you as well through this time. 


And I just want to say I'm so excited for what's coming ahead for the future. I look forward to seeing you run more triathlons or whatever the next personal experience is for you. And I can't wait to see you in person as soon as we possibly can. So thank you so much for being here. Make sure everyone you check out my adventure group on Instagram, Facebook, all the socials, as well as the website and grab a copy of your book as well and video.


James: Awesome. Thanks, guys.


Ros: I really hope that you enjoyed this podcast episode with James Castrission, my good friend, as well as an incredible adventure and the things that he's done around the world. We're going to link to everything that we talked about in the show notes, so his website, his social media channels, but also his books. 


And if you get the opportunity to grab them, we'll link to them so that you can find them. They are James Castrission Crossing the Ditch was his first one. And then his second book was Extreme South. 


So both of those adventures that he did with his good mate Jonesy, crossing the Tasman Sea, but then also going down to Antarctica. I mean, just incredible. And it showed the resilience, the grit but also the humanity and the kind of person that he is he is a wonderful human being. 


He's very generous with his time and his knowledge and he is just like us here in the travel community. He wants to see you know, you guys all be absolutely successful in what you do. That's where my heart is. Thank you so much for listening today. If you've got any feedback, if you've got any comments, please send us a message at a Travel Agent Achievers, we are here to help you and I want to see you absolutely saw in your business growth in 2022 and beyond. 


Thanks for listening. We'll talk to you soon. Bye for now. If you love it, please share it on Instagram or Facebook. Make sure you tag us too so that we can shout and share with you as well to your friends and colleagues. 


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