Dave Cornthwaite, Founder, SayYesMore

"Any kind of change comes down to mindset, and the less flexible yours is, the more scary change will be."

Izzy Ashton

Assistant Editor, BITE


Dave Cornthwaite, Founder, SayYesMore

Dave Cornthwaite, Adventurer & Founder, SayYesMore


Creativebrief: What led you to found SayYesMore? Why do you think we all should?

Dave Cornthwaite: SayYesMore was a personal motto that I took on when I was a twenty-five-year-old PlayStation addict and my cat was way cooler than me. It seemed like a simple way to get into the habit of positive action, leading a more interesting life and escaping a dead-end job and a fairly mundane mindset. Ten years later I'd travelled over 20,000 miles under my own steam and realised I barely knew anyone who followed my adventures on Facebook, so I posted an invite to come and join me on a camping trip and that was the beginning of the YesTribe, which now has over 10,000 members, an annual festival and all kinds of cool, impactful stuff going on.

Dave Cornthwaite, Founder, SayYesMore
Dave at the Geneva crossing

Creativebrief: What’s the biggest challenge we face when transforming insights into action?

Dave Cornthwaite: We develop habits and beliefs according to the place we grow up and the people we surround ourselves with, and on the whole, we grow up, get a job, live in the same place and live very similar lives. It's terrifying to imagine what life would be like without a regular income, or the certainty of a warm bed each night, and luckily the people we hang out with tend to back up those little fears. Jumping out of the box and taking a few more decisions into our own hands is a luxury a lot of people dream of, but it's not an easy leap. That's what we do with SayYesMore, help people realise that we don't live in the 1900's anymore, that we can make a living on a beach with our laptop if we want to. And jumping in a river and swimming for two months is also possible, even if you can't swim at the start. Any kind of change comes down to mindset, and the less flexible yours is, the more scary change will be.

Dave Cornthwaite, Founder, SayYesMore
Dave in the Baltic//Ph. Leif Rosas

Creativebrief: What keeps you curious?

Dave Cornthwaite: This is really hard to answer. I think it's habit. I wasn't always curious, but once I decided to ditch the PlayStation and choose adventures over a desk, I guess I got comfortable with the bare minimum. I find road signs that make me laugh and waking up in a morning without a clue where I'll be sleeping the next night far more entertaining than a conversation about X-Factor. We're pretty lucky to be alive, and I reckon we should take the chance to see our little world from a bunch of different angles.

Dave is speaking at BITE LIVE 2018 about his ground-breaking Expedition100 project.