Australian Island Caretaker: Ben Southall’s Work Life Path

“Your truth will create the right action and the right people to bring that about.” ~ Rick Jarow

An authentic desire is transparent, fueled with passion, and unmistakable in its truth. It was that kind of energy that put a fire under Briton’s 34 year-old Ben Southall who was just bestowed “The Best Job in the World – Island Caretaker Great Barrier Reef.”

Here’s the job description: Blog weekly on the happenings on the island, take pictures and videos, report findings to Queensland Tourism and feed the fish if one feels like it as live-in caretaker of Australia’s Hamilton Island. It’s a six-month gig with flexible hours and pays a cool $150,00 cash. Not a bad job if you can get it. Mr. Southall beat out nearly 35,000 applicants for the cushy seaside post. (Read more here in the Guardian) Talking about work life flexibility!

The real story here is what Mr. Southall – a British charity worker – did to nab the prize. He fully embraced the grueling application process despite what appeared to be a lofty goal. Here’s an excerpt from the Guardian article to give you an idea of his driving passion.

In his 60-second video application Southall was seen riding an ostrich, running a marathon, trekking through Africa and kissing a giraffe. He described himself as “the adventurous, crazy energetic one”.

“He’s a level-headed, well-grounded bloke,” McRoberts said of Southall, who told the Guardian in March, when he was chosen as a finalist, that he planned to win by just being himself.

Just being himself. That sounds rather simple doesn’t it? Often I think we’re swayed by the conventional wisdom and societal influences governing the definition of what a successful or joyful vocation is, rather than personally defining it for ourselves. Mr. Southall knew what he wanted and offered up the best game in town, which in this case turned out to be a down-to-earth approach; a trait that Queensland officials found to be the perfect fit.

How do you define success in your job, career or vocation? If you had to choose which of the prior three words describes your work – which would it be and why? Please share!