Climb Your Mountain

Climb Your Mountain

I remember being very moved the first time I listened to the song “The Climb” by the band No Doubt. Maybe because I viewed my life at the time as a climb, I was climbing out of my past, my doubts, and my fears. I knew where I wanted my life to lead, and to me, in an abstract kind of way, it was like I was climbing a mountain. There were hazards along the way, forests I couldn’t see through, dangerous cliffs, paths that lead nowhere, and long detours. I recommend downloading that song on iTunes if you don’t already have it, it is very motivating!

Reaching your goal is like climbing a mountain. You can see the top and know that is where you want to go, but there will be challenges along the way. You may try your hardest to make it up a steep slippery slope and keep falling back down no matter how hard you try. Or you may find yourself at a cliff face that seems impossible to climb. It is easy for many people to see these obstacles as their own failures and become convinced that they shouldn’t even try. Maybe they fear the danger or maybe they lack the belief in their own ability to get past the obstacles.

What separates the people who never climb or give up too early from those who make it all the way to the top? And what happens after they do make it all the way to the top? I’ll answer the second question first because that is the easy one. They find another mountain, (another goal) and reach that one with the ever increasing confidence of having done it before.

The difference between those who reach their goal, and those who never try or quit too soon is actually pretty simple too. The answer is “a choice”. If you choose to focus on what you have not accomplished, you create negative, self-defeating thoughts within your own mind. Remember, the only things in this life you ever truly control are the conscious choices you make in your own mind. You can choose to “feel like a failure” or you can choose to take responsibility, embrace your failures, learn from them and get your life on course to the top of the mountain.

Every person, goal, and mountain has characteristics unique to individual circumstances. Perhaps there is a guide to show you the way, or perhaps you need to find the way yourself without a guide, and maybe even guide others after you have found the way.

Along the way, when things become difficult, you have 3 choices. (One) You can turn around, go back to where you started and lament with the others how impossible it is. (Two) Quit where you are and set up camp, and watch the others go by, turn around, or set up camp with you. Or (Three) choose to keep going, One step at a time, and never stop, knowing that all forward progress, no matter how small in measure, or how difficult, gets you closer to the top.

One of the easiest things to do when faced with unpleasantness or difficulty is to “Quit”. The thought of following through to you goal is not as easy as many think. It takes real commitment which only occurs after the initial feelings of inspiration and excitement have passed. It takes real perseverance, persistence, and focus, which are all conscious choices. Every goal and every relationship will have certain aspects that we dislike, or find inconvenient. Do not allow these to steal your joy of reaching your goal, otherwise you will simply “quit”. Give up, on the job, or the business, or the relationship.

One of my favorite movie quotes is from Rocky Balboa – 2006 motion picture. When Rocky says to his son:
“Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get it and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”

I think that’s why the song I mentioned earlier in this article is so touching. She “gets it”. No matter what – keep going, keep getting up, keep climbing. The rewards of high character, as high as a mountain top, are infinitely more rewarding than any ease or comfort you feel after quitting. Never give up!

Coming Soon…
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Michael Andreas is the Author and Creator of Behavior Self; a modern synthesis of wisdom, science, and everyday life, revealing the interconnectedness of our choices, our character and our destiny.
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