Paul Burgum is an Adventurer, Author, Motivational Speaker, Youth Worker and businessman /founder of BCT Aspire CIC. Paul has developed a successful strategy for achievement that begin from simply taking on his own life long demons.
Since suffering a nervous breakdown in 2009 and admitting to himself his own mental health and difficulties with alcohol, Paul has gone on to found his own Not for Profit Social Enterprise delivering a wide range of events for the good of the community and especially Children & Young People, named the Evening Gazette’s Community Champion for Children & Young People in 2012.
During this period Paul and his work with BCT Aspire CIC has raised over £100,000 for local good causes including personally building an extension for one local boy with Cerebral Palsy, bringing in help from across the community.
As part of Paul’s attempt to get to grips with his own problems Paul began walking, during time living away in County Durham whilst he went through a period of admitting to his own issues. This resulted in the start of a 4 year voyage that took in over 3000 miles of walking, spanning the length of Europe, from the Southern Tip of Italy to the edge of the Orkney Islands, also passing through France, England & Scotland.
Each walk Paul raised the bar in terms of his own rules, with the journeys across both the length of France & Italy done with limited, money, language skills, support crew and only a small tent for comfort. Through these tests Paul took on his own Anxiety Disorder by forcing himself to have to ask for help and support, even not speaking the language.
As a youth worker Paul has shared his learning with many young people, believing in simple values such as hard work, respect of both self and others, which dreams are achievable if we are prepared to stick in. Paul also believes that all experiences in life help to form who we are and that the greatest learning comes from the toughest of moments, when we keep on fighting.
A former talented Rugby player who represented England North at his peak Paul has also turned his attention to running and lately Ultra running. When a good friend told Paul that walking distance was nothing like running, Paul took this as a challenge, first deciding to simply go and run a marathon to see, then even crazier with just 4 weeks training to attempt to run 104 miles in 24 hours from Gretna Green to Teesside which he achieved with minutes to spare. Since then he has gone on to run numerous races including the epic Hardmoors Ring Of Steele 160 mile race.
Paul started his speaking career talking to pupils at a school with children who had behavioral problems, a place where Paul gained the courage to talk about his own way of trying to reset his own learnt behaviours. Since then he has given talks to a cross section of people including high level business executives, professional sportsmen, youth groups, colleges & universities. Paul has Also won numerous other Business & Community Awards for his diverse range of work, which includes running an events & catering business through BCT Aspire CIC & at times working as a time served carpenter on building sites.
Paul believes that everybody can achieve their own dreams and that we are all capable of being absolutely brilliant. As long time depression sufferer Paul believes that we can all at times be beaten by the simplest problems, even when at other times capable of great feats, like Paul’s own journey. Having developed his own mix of techniques, using thoughts from Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Mindfulness & Positive Thinking, Paul believes his approach can be applied to any person or problem. That staying positive is a choice and that the simplest of things are often the best answer.