Just a few more steps and you’re there. My entire body was on fire, droplets of sweat dripping down my face like a never ending leaky faucet. You can do it. My legs felt like lead. My breathing was uneven and heavy, heart racing at about a million beats per minute. My arms were gripped onto the shoulder straps of my rucksack, because I didn’t know what else to do with them. I continued to trudge up the mountain for another mile with my head looking down at my feet. Angus was well ahead of me, his long legs seemingly gliding him up the mountain at an effortless pace. I don’t know how he had gotten so far ahead.At every step, my mind and body were at war with each other. My mind is strong. It urged me to continue, urged me to move forward. It was my cheerleader, distracting me with upbeat songs in my head and telling me it will all be worth it in the end. My body is a bit weaker. It wanted to stop. It was screaming at me to stop. It was questioning why I do this to myself. Why didn’t I just pay the damn €8 for the lift so I’d be at the top quicker, without any effort?
Then, I was there. At the top. My breathing slowed, my body relaxed. My mind had won the war. I had made it to the top of Cinque Torri. And you know what? My mind was right. It was well worth the trek.
I’ve summited many mountains in my life, both literally and figuratively. None of them were easy. But then again, easy doesn’t get you anywhere. Each mountain I climb is a different journey, a different challenge. And each challenge contains its own seed. It sprouts and blossoms into my personal development, and something that I can keep with me forever. These are what the mountains have taught me, and these are what I will instil with me for the rest of my life.
Challenge Yourself. Always.
After climbing many mountains and wondering why in the world I put myself through each one, I learned that I love being challenged. Mountains push my mind, soul and body to its limits and further beyond. I can see what I’m capable of. I’ve learned that I can do so many things that I never thought I could.
But… Pace Yourself Too.
Sometimes I get too excited in the beginning of a hike, so I’m hopping and bounding up steep slopes. This lasts a short five minutes until I’m panting and dying and realizing I have a long, long way to go and I’m already tired. This is the same in life. You can work hard, and you can play hard, but don’t burn yourself out too quickly.
Friends and family make the journey worthwhile.
Solo hikes are great and do help you learn about yourself. However, everything is much more enjoyable when you have good company. Don’t ever forget that your friends and family will be there to support you and grow with you. They make the journey worth the effort.
Just keep swimming.
My obsession for Finding Nemo is pretty real, and I’m not ashamed about it. Dory teaches us a life lesson, and it can be applied everywhere in our lives, especially in the mountains. When you reach a false summit, thinking that you had given it your all and you’re still not at the top, you can feel a bit defeated. But you know what you gotta do? Just keep swimming. Or in this case, just keep walking.
The view is worth it.
Every step, every bit of suffering and every breath will lead you to the top. Once you’re there, you’ll realize the sense of accomplishment that comes along with challenging yourself, and not giving up. It’s the best feeling ever. Take to the mountains, push yourself and head towards your goals, as difficult as they may seem. Each step you take will be closer than before, and by the time you know it, you’ll have reached the top.
This week’s guest post was written by Vivian Vu, from Angus and Vivian Adventures.
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