I thought I’d share with you one of the most important lessons that I ever learned in my life. I’ve never talked about it before, but it seems so appropriate to our situation now.
When I was a young man in my early 20s, I’d split up with my girlfriend, I was unhappy at work and the world seemed to be falling on my head. I did what I always do at times like this, I went sailing.
The problem was, I didn’t have a boat at the time. I’d worked as a charter skipper in the past and decided to see if I could find a job that involved sailing. I was eventually put in touch with a group of ex soldiers who were running a yacht charter / delivery company. I didn’t know it at the time but they were all ex SAS. They never talked about this, but you can’t spend tens of thousands of sea miles on a boat with people without learning a little about them and they had gained a reputation for leaving broken crew members in the ports of the world.
Now, after a lifetime’s involvement in extreme sports, I’ve gotten used to people like this popping up in my life. After leaving the army, many of them feel the need to find something else mad to do. I’m not the military type and I can have enough of people like this, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t have an enormous respect for them.
This lot were a bit much but the sea was my domain then. I felt at home there and I managed to stick with these guys for a few years. These men taught me one of the most important lessons of my life and its always kept me in good stead in times of trouble.
Sometimes when you’re cold, wet, tired and exhausted, thousands of miles from the nearest land with no hope of respite, what is it that separates those that can carry on and those that give up?
I can remember an occasion when I was so broken that I’d lost all fear of death. It felt like something I could wrap around myself like a warm blanket. What made me carry on, I realised upon reflection years later, was that I didn’t want to be the one to let anybody down, I didn’t want the sum total of my life to be a failure; there were worse things than death.
The secret of dealing with a situation like this is to always concentrate on the task at hand. Sometimes, the odds of survival can logically be very slim and if you think about this, you’ll demoralise yourself and likely give up. Tasks have to be prioritised and the critical ones addressed first, but sometimes, when this decision is made, it’s best to just concentrate on it and think of nothing else, and when it has been completed, just move on to the next critical task.
Sometimes these tasks will be too much and you need to break them down into smaller steps. I remember a time that I counted 10 seconds at a time. When I’d survived 10 seconds, I’d count another 10, the seconds became minutes, then hours and then days. Sometimes the chances of survival are slim, but if you give up death is certain.
This is a lesson that has helped me through many difficult situations in life.
On Thursday 23rd of June 2016 Great Britain held a referendum on our membership of the European Islamic Union; against all the odds we elected to leave. I was so proud of my fellow countrymen on that day. On that day, in spite of Project Fear, the majority of the electorate decided that whatever the consequences, there were things that were more important.
Things such as living as free men in our own country, under our own rules and a democracy that our ancestors and more recent relatives had been only to willing to fight and die to bequeath to us. We wanted to provide our children and grandchildren with that same privilege. In truth, it wasn’t about our lives, it was about theirs and we were prepared to suffer whatever the consequences to protect them.
As far as I’m concerned on the 23rd of June 2016 all of you Brexiteers became heroes. You should all be proud and not allow others to insult and belittle you. But now the decision has been made, Brexit is our task in hand and we need to focus on it to the exclusion of all else.
When you look at our country today, we may feel we are in a hopeless situation. The government is attempting to renege on its promises, it protects those that would brutally rape our women, sexually exploit our children and murder us in the streets. What a disgrace our government is.
The European Union is showing its true colours more and more by the day, as shown in Barcelona recently as their bully boys beat up innocent civilians trying engaged in a democratic activity. We have so many problems to address that it’s hard to know where to begin: it all starts with Brexit. After that we’ll address all of these other problems one by one, but first we need control of our own country and its borders.
We need to demand that the government honours the promises it made in the run up to the referendum, a total and unconditional withdrawal from the European Union. There is nothing to debate any more; we’re not interested in their excuses and backsliding.
Brexit is the most important and critical task that we have. Once it is achieved all the rest can follow. Concentrate on it, focus on it, demand it and fight for it and don’t listen to those that argue against it. They had their chance and they lost.