[av_one_full first min_height=” vertical_alignment=” space=” custom_margin=” margin=’0px’ padding=’0px’ border=” border_color=” radius=’0px’ background_color=” src=” background_position=’top left’ background_repeat=’no-repeat’ animation=” mobile_breaking=” mobile_display=”]
[av_textblock size=” font_color=” color=” av-medium-font-size=” av-small-font-size=” av-mini-font-size=” custom_class=” admin_preview_bg=”]
That’s what it all comes down to. Trusting in the self, in those around us, and in the universe to lead us to where we’re supposed to be. Letting go is the single most important element in that process of trust. In order to get to where we’re going, we have to let go of where we’ve been. Making the decision to do the yearlong Professional Guiding Programme at EcoTraining is a big one and can take years for some to make; it’s scary. There are all the myriad questions: what happens if it’s a mistake? How can I leave my life behind? What if I don’t get a job afterwards? And, and, and…

These questions are fear-based justifications to not make the desired change in our lives. The only way to change, is to leap and trust that not only will we be caught, but we may find that we can actually fly.

Like many students, Jayne Shackleton, from a small town in the UK, left a full life to come to EcoTraining. At 31 years old, she quit her job as a hairdresser, gave away her belongings and home. She says, “I knew I would not be going back,” when reflecting on her previous city life. Jayne, passionate about conservation has worked with wild dogs in South Africa as well as with sea turtles in Greece. It was in Greece that she met Nicola-Ann Jack, a former EcoTraining Student and current Assistant Instructor at EcoTraining’s Mashatu camp in Botswana. Nicola told Jayne about EcoTraining and planted the seed that would later on become a flower.

Success on the shooting range – Firearm Proficiency is compulsory for Trails Guide training
Jayne busy with animal track identification

Post the Professional Field Guide course training, Jayne is currently completing her lodge placement programme and has secured a placement with EcoTraining doing exactly what she’s wanted to do for years. Like many others, Jayne took the leap to change her life. She says that it was having trust and the faith in herself that she believed it would all work out afterwards that carried her through the challenging decision.

So, without further ado, if there’s something that you know your soul is hungry for, then take the bite. Leap! Let go! Use whatever words that will help you to harness that yearning inner courage. This is an ancient notion that resounds more and more in our modern era. You can rightfully so justify why it cannot be done…or…you can take that Cape Buffalo by the horns, hold on, and enjoy the ride. Have the trust to embrace your truth.

*Disclaimer: It’s a very bad idea to actually grab a Cape Buffalo by his or her horns. This is a metaphor.

[av_video src=’’ format=’16-9′ width=’16’ height=’9′ custom_class=”]

About the Author:
EcoTraining Connect

EcoTraining Connect

EcoTraining, which has been in operation since 1993, is the innovator and top provider of training for safari guides and wildlife experts in Africa.

Explore more

a group of students looking at tracks in the sand

Understanding Wildlife Tracking

The ancient art of tracking unveils the secrets of animal behaviour. We explore the key steps of identifying, interpreting, and tracking wild animals in the heart of the South African wilderness.

“Do not be afraid to get dirty. Get down on your knees and have a close look at the tracks. It is essential to take your time. You can make a mistake by being too quick on the trigger when identifying tracks,” said Gerhard Delport, a former EcoTracker student.

Read more
students at lanner gorge

EcoTraining Celebrates 30 Years of Excellence

Thirty years of EcoTraining is a significant milestone. This celebration is a testament to EcoTraining’s long history of promoting field guiding and wildlife conservation. It’s an opportunity to inspire the next generation of passionate individuals who will continue the legacy of creating guardians of the natural world.

Read more
a group of students walking in nature.

How do I become a Backup Trainee for EcoTraining? 

“To be selected as a backup trail guide is a privilege and carries great responsibility. You are responsible for the life of the Lead Trails Guide and the lives of guests who are with you and require a great deal of trust”, says Gino Cinquina, former EcoTraining Backup. As a backup trainee for EcoTraining, you can walk in beautiful wilderness areas and experience incredible moments on foot with wild animals.

Read more

Start your wildlife career

Want to become a field or nature guide? Explore our immersive courses and training programmes for professional safari guides and guardians of nature, taught and led by experts in the industry.

EcoTraining offers career and accredited courses, wildlife enthusiast courses, gap year programmes and customised group travel courses.

Join our nature-loving community.

× Available from 08:00 to 16:30 Available on SundayMondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturday