The Pole Method

The 1st Step
Discover your Pole

To me, the Pole is everything that makes me move. You too carry it inside of you and it’s up to you to discover what it is.

What is the Pole? It is a representation of your ultimate goal, your biggest dream. How do you discover what it is? It is something you would be willing to make sacrifices for. You are aware that it will take time to obtain it and some time getting to know yourself better, but you know it will be worth it.

The 2nd Step
The roadmap

Your inner strength does not rely on your dreams and independent thinking – it depends on your ability to create life scenarios. When dreaming of something, think of a step-by-step roadmap how to get it. And then do it!

Now think about your goal/dream and start preparing your roadmap. Write down the individual stages you will have to go through on your way to your goal. What kind of skills will you need? What possible challenges await you on your path? What are some important things to keep in mind? Start with very small steps – they will show you the way. Don’t impose any limits. Don’t be afraid to dream big. Big dreams are the motors of your imagination and motivation.

Inspiration: Polar expedition with Jan Mela, 2004

The 3rd Step
Solid theory is the best teacher

The more knowledge we have about the world and its splendour, the easier and safer it is to travel around it.

For our roadmap to work, it is important to possess the right information about the reality we wish to explore, the challenges that we will have to overcome and the already-existing solutions to those challenges. Do you research on the Internet, read books and talk to people who have achieved goals similar to yours. Be open to the world and to the people in it.

Inspiration: The Vistula Expedition, 2010

The 4th Step
Overcome limitations

The world is full of possibilities that we will never discover if we never overcome the obstacles

To achieve new goals, one must overcome various limitations – both external and those inside us. Social conventions, customs, norms and what other people think of us are some of the sources of these barriers in our mind. Thinking against these established conventions and even against your common sense takes courage.

Inspiration: solo expedition to the South Pole, 1995

The 5th Step
Preparation through visualisation

There are different paths to take to get to know yourself and what may work for others may not be the best path for you. But listening to your inner voice is a good way to begin.

Once we have gathered enough information about our goal, considered the challenges along the way and consulted with some people who know a lot about the subject, we can begin visualising our journey, step by step, day after day. You can do that simply by planning out every step and every day, while visualising your journey to your goal. At the same time, visualise the challenges that may occur and picture how you will overcome them. The more questions arise, the better.

Inspiration: Journey across the Gibson Desert, 1998

The 6th Step

Trying is the hard part. Starting out in your quest is more valuable than reaching your goal. Even if you fail, you can still say: ‘at least I tried.’

The goal is important only to get started on your journey. But most important is the journey, not the goal itself. When we set out, our expectations will clash with reality. It is up to us to overcome this burden and, if need be, recognise the flaws in our plan and be flexible enough to modify it.

Inspiration: Circumnavigating the Atlantic Ocean, 1998 & 2000

The 7th Step
It is the journey that matters...

It is the journey that matters, not the goal

Nothing matters as much as our journey and the things we learn about ourselves and the world along the way.

You can’t reach the North or South Pole with your legs alone – you have to get there with your mind. It is important to be at peace with yourself, other people and the world. When we face challenges and feel exhausted, we often let our subconsciousness lead the way. But it’s important to pace yourself because your energy is not unlimited.

Inspiration: Expedition to Greenland, 1993

The 8th Step
The two Poles

Life does not end after failure. More challenges await.

You may not reach your goal at first, but remember that failure is a stepping stone to success, not the polar opposite of it. If you have read the previous step about the importance of the journey over the goal, you will remember that the knowledge you gain along the way is priceless. Every failure is a useful lesson for the future that teaches us something new. If you own up to your failures and their consequences, you will learn something new and move forward.

Success that comes too easy is no way to learn!

Inspiration: Traversing Antarctica, 1996-7 (‘My Poles’, pg. 311-386)

The 9th Step
Don’t call it quits when you’re..

Don’t call it quits when you’re half-way there

Don’t spend your life doing what you’ve already done before. Life should be about growth and development. Do something interesting. Don’t quit half-way.

The North Pole is a magical place but once you reach it, you can’t stay there forever – sort of like life, isn’t it? Sometimes it’s better to let go of your goal or achievement lest it become a deadweight and prevent you from going forward. That’s why reaching even the most ambitious of goals is not the end of your journey, but the start of a new one.

Inspiration: Journey to the Third Pole along the El Camino trail, 2015


The 10th Step
Know Yourself

No one is born to become someone else. Don’t copy others – you are free to explore new paths.

Now it’s time to stop for a while and bring your thoughts back to when you had first discovered your goal, your symbolic Pole. Did you believe you could make it? What were the highlights and key moments of your journey that made it a success (or failure)? What have your learned along the way? Did you manage to get to know yourself better? Who were the people that supported you, who did you trust and who were the people you could have asked for assistance? Now you can return to the first step and ask yourself: what is my next goal? What is my next Pole?

Inspiration: Journey to the Third Pole

Ongoing projects

  • Power4Change

    The only thing that can realistically protect our planet from climate change is changing our habits and raising environmental awareness of millions of people.  Marek Kamiński has set out to begin this change starting with himself, but with the goal of involving as many people as possible who want to have a real impact on reducing carbon emissions, one day at a time. Enter Power4Change – a journey around the world to inspire and educate.

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  • Life Plan program

    LifePlan is an eight-month motivation and development program based on The Pole Method created by Marek Kamiński.

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  • Walk4Life

    You walk through your life, but are you fulfilling your dreams? Face your goals and start reaching them today! Our app will give you the tools and knowledge to make it easier to achieve your dreams.

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