The Uphill Climb
We have all heard that life is about the journey and not the destination. When I was younger, I convinced myself that life would only be challenging until I graduated from high school, then until I graduated from college and so on. I thought that I would figure out how to navigate through life and figure out how to avoid all obstacles and problems. But we all know that my efforts were futile. Our objective is to figure out how to navigate the river of life with ease and skill.
One of the students in the WLYA really wanted to go rock climbing. I could see her passion for the sport and I really wanted her to get to pursue her goal. She asked almost everyone to go and no one agreed. I told her in confidence that I would join her whenever she wanted to go. Lo and behold, she set up an all-day adventure for our first full day off from the program. This was one less thing that I had to worry about, I suppose. I realized after that I was being open, free, loving and understanding in every stage of this experience.
We found out that the tour would leave promptly at 8:30 from Chiang Mai. For practical reasons, we needed to stay in the city of Chiang Mai to ensure that we made it to the excursion on time. Our next step was to figure out where to stay. We received several recommendations regarding guesthouses – hostels – in Chiang Mai. I was secretly nervous because I had many hesitations/questions:
How clean will the room be?
How safe will the room be?
Aren’t they known for having bedbugs?
Aren’t I too old to stay in a random hostel?
Well, although the room ended up costing $6 per night, I don’t think I’m really up for staying in one. I would try it again, but most of my assumptions were true. The blankets hadn’t been washed, there were bugs and the last cleaning of the bathroom was a bit questionable. However, no one stole any of our things and we were able to wake up in a timely manner and go on this amazing new adventure.
So we go off on our adventure to Crazy Horse Buttress. I quickly learned that I was the only first-time rock climber on the trip. As such, everyone knew how to climb, clean the room, lead, etc. prior to coming on the trip. I was still suck on the fact that a figure-eight knot was the thing keeping me from dying while I climbed up the mountain.
I always trust the science of adventure sports, so I made sure that a guide double-checked my knot each time before climbing.
I waited to climb last to determine if I could learn technique from the other climbers. I felt funny as I asked about the climbing methodology as no introduction was given. I can be so formal sometimes. I was simply told to use gravity and all my limbs. So I started to climb.
I got about 10 meters/35 feet above the ground and started to experience fear. My limbs starting shaking and I couldn’t figure out how to keep moving up the mountain. I actually thought about giving up. I looked down to the ground only to see every single person cheering for me. People started yelling, “You can do it,” “You’re safe,” “You won’t fall,” and other inspirational terms.
So after a bit of breathing and debating, I decided to keep on going. I overcame my fear of the unknown, my belief that I couldn’t figure out how to climb properly and my disappointment in myself to push forward. I was able to reach the top of the first climb on my first attempt.
So I was finally allowed to climb down the wall after I reached the top.
All of the emotions of fear, unease, and stress all reached me when my feet hit the ground. I experience a mixture of sadness, stress, and relief all at once. Everyone came over and congratulated me on my success. The guide actually told me not to feel bad about my hesitation. He told me that most people only have the strength to go up a third of the mountain before giving up. And though I was nervous, I kept on going regardless, and that was the point. It took me a while to get over myself, but I finally did. I decided to keep on going for a while.
We all must know ourselves to know what obstacles are holding us back. Is it fear? A mountain? Lack of support? Lack of experience? Or something else?
It’s interesting how much of what we experience in life follows this same progression. We think we want to do something. We read up about it, ask our natural support circle to answer our necessary questions, and embark on the journey. Then, most people quit the first time they feel fear, uncertainty or stress. We don’t think about the circle of people supporting us to reach our goals. Or if we do think of it, we don’t believe their cheers. We easily fall back to our well-known patterns, procedures and ways of thinking. When I was finally able to move through my completely paralyzing mentality, I was able to keep going and reach the final destination. I may have cheated by using my knees a time or two, or taking a slower time climbing, but I still learned a lot about myself during the course of my journey to the top.
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About: Dr. Roshawnna Novellus, known as the Wealthy Yogi, is a mindful wealth multiplier, business strategist, and author of Budgeting is More Liberation than Limitation. She has developed a 5-step blueprint for mindful money management to show any entrepreneur how to create a stress free wealthy lifestyle. Through her books, programs and retreats, she has helped thousands of entrepreneurs achieve intentional personal success. She is currently booking speaking engagements for corporations and corporate groups. If your company or group has workshops around these topics for your employees, please contact her.
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