The 33-year-old believes he can not only lead the Australian team through its most tumultuous period in recent memory, but carry the torch for years to come.
"I'm going to be doing everything I can to be doing it for as long as I can," he said.
"At the moment, I'm captain for as long as I'm around. Steve's got a two-year ban from the leadership role, but he's somebody who I'll be speaking to quite closely.
"I feel as good as I've ever felt. I was saying to somebody this morning I'm 33 going on 22. My body feels great."
Back in his native Hobart for the first time since returning from the ill-fated South African series, Paine said he had had time to figure out precisely what kind of captain he would be.
"I've just tried to be myself and be relaxed around the team. I think going forward as captain it's important for me to keep doing that," he said.
"I'm trying not to change. I'm just going to go about things the way Tim Paine goes about things. I'm not an overly vocal captain, I'll just be trying to lead by example."
Paine tasked with cultural overhaul
The Tasmanian will oversee a new era in Australian cricket.
It will be one devoid of the vicious sledging and cheating for which it has now become notorious.
Paine has been charged with captaining a side that has not only lost three key players and its coach, but more importantly the trust of the Australian public.
His number one task will be overhauling the locker-room culture of a team he admitted has too often played its cricket fuelled by emotion, rather than belief in its skill.
"Playing international cricket you've got to be as competitive as you can be, but we've got to look at different ways of doing that. More respectful ways of putting teams under the pump," Paine said.
"In the past couple of years we've been a touch too emotional and been carried away on that side of the game."
It was Paine's mix of resilience and skill that's seen him parachuted into Australian cricket's top job.
Just 12 months ago he was a phone call away from giving up the game altogether after being punted to the fringe of the Tasmanian Tigers Sheffield Shield team.
His perseverance earnt him a place back in the national team, and it was that quality that helped seal his fate as Australia's 48th Test skipper.
"I've been contracted to Tasmania since I was 16, and that's a long time to be in the game. I've been through some massive highs and some low lows," he said.
"For somebody who hadn't played at the international level for 8 or 9 years its made me really cherish the opportunity I've got as a player.
"Now as a captain its even more special. Two years ago I didn't see myself playing cricket for Australia.
"The fact I've been there and done it and lost it has probably held me in good stead."
Paine's role as Test captain is assured, but he is not expecting to take the helm of the ODI and T20 teams.
He said he'd be happy to see Justin Langer replace Darren Lehmann as coach.
"We're very lucky in Australia that we have a number of people who could step up and do the role," he said.
"Justin is one of those guys who I know would be absolutely brilliant."
Paine suffered a hairline fracture in his thumb during the fourth test in South Africa, but could play county cricket before Australia's ODI series against England starts on June 13.