The Early Years
My name is Jared Styan and I am 21 years old so I guess it still is ‘Early Years’.
When I was younger, I remember never really liking school. Partly because I was bullied a lot for being very short but later on it was more about wanting to escape. To escape sitting in classrooms all day and my small town. I had a fire of passion and wanderlust growing inside of me and it needed to be freed.
I vividly remember the moment when this fire was lit. When I was 14 I went with my family to Thailand for a short holiday. It was my first time travelling abroad. The defining moment came when we were on the roof of a boat on our way back from a day trip and we met these travellers. My sister and I started talking to them and we learnt that they had been travelling the world for years and they did this by Teaching English. I remember feeling the world open up to me and thinking ‘That’s what I want to be’. A traveller, an adventurer, a person whose mind is open and whose heart is full of rich experiences.
The travel bug
After school, I went to university to study music and psychology and at the time I was in a serious relationship. I studied music because I thought I wanted to be a musician but the adventurer inside of me was getting itchy. Later that year, I decided to take a trip to Nepal and hike through the Himalayas (19 years old) and I have to say witnessing the beauty of the Himalayas changed me forever, I will never forget watching the sunset over the Annapurna mountains, the light making the mountain peaks shine like red gold.
Shortly after this, my partner and I decided to split up due to a number of reasons (it was a bit messy and complicated). A combination of the break up and the trip to Nepal helped me make the decision to leave university (which I found very unsatisfying) to travel full-time. So, I scored 3 jobs, volunteered at a hospital and worked my butt off everyday for about 7 months to save up enough money. Then in December 2018, I took the leap. I travelled all over Peru, got qualified as an English Teacher, travelled some more (Bolivia, Argentina) and now, Peru is my temporary home. I live and work here as an English Teacher, travel in my spare time, study Spanish and train for the next adventure.
I have no regrets, I have never been happier and I finally feel like I am doing the things I was born to do and being the person I was always meant to be.
Why did I start Peak of mind?
After having many moving experiences volunteering in the children’s hospital, I felt a burning desire to contribute to charities that try to help those who are suffering. So, in November 2018 I ran up the highest mountain in Australia in my Pyjamas and raised over 5000$ for the ‘Steven Walter Children’s Cancer Foundation” which help improve the lives of kids with cancer. We got a lot of media attention from this and we were featured on SEA FM and 2GO Radio, NBN News and the local newspaper.
But that was just the beginning, I wanted to do more and to contribute more. So, I started Peak of Mind so I could document my adventures and spread awareness about the issues I care about.
So far I have;
Hiked through the Himalayas and travelled all over Nepal, run up Australia’s highest mountain (raised over 5000$ for charity), ran up a 5800-meter volcano which took 13 hours, hiked for 5 days to Machu Picchu, climbed a volcano called Cha Chani, rode a bicycle down the most dangerous road in the world, hiked through the jungles of Bolivia, surfed in Lima, ziplined across mountains, played soccer in Argentina, travelled through the Amazon rainforest and most importantly met countless people from all over the world and had many humbling experiences.