3 Mountain Top Lessons For Goal Setting
I climbed a freaking MOUNTAIN! Okay, technically I should say hiked but there was a portion of it that I was crawling up a waterfall on all fours so I’m claiming it.
It was Euphoric! I was on such a high when my husband and I reached the top. Here’s me power posing and soaking my accomplishment in.
Here’s what climbing a mountain taught me about the importance of setting goals:
Don’t be Afraid of Setting Big Goals
Here’s the honest truth – I haven’t worked out (like really worked out) in over a year. Sure, I’ve moved my body and maybe done an 8-minute ab workout here and there. But truly sweating, working and pushing my body to its max is not something I’ve done.
I have my excuses – running a side business and managing a 9-5 job takes up my time, we’re trying to have another kid and I don’t want to do anything to harm our chances, etc. – but if I’m being honest with myself (and you) I'm mostly just afraid of admitting how out of shape I am after having my son.
So when my husband told me his goal was reaching Lake of Glass, I scoffed. 7.8 miles of hiking, 1,761 feet in elevation gain, going past the treeline - no way are we going to make it there. I even told him let’s set a more realistic goal. But thank goodness he never listens to me. :)
Go big! DREAM BIG! Because I’m telling you right now, you can do more than you think.
Saying a Goal Out Loud Gives it Strength
If I tell myself I’m going to do something by golly I’m bound and determined to make sure it happens. And speaking a goal out loud, even to myself, provides more accountability. It makes the goal real – like I can’t take it back or pretend I never had the thought. Which when I hit this moment in the hike, I kinda wanted to. (See that bowl in the Mountain, between the two pines? That was the goal and I was already getting winded.)
And then I spoke my goal out loud to a couple strangers. And you know what, NO ONE scoffed at it. They all provided encouragement! It reminded me of a quote from Rachel Hollis that really hit home for me. She says, “Remember this: nobody who’s achieved MORE than you will ever judge you.” Read that again because it’s TRUTH darling. They all knew what it felt like to fight, I mean hike, to the top. They knew the battle that lay ahead and they knew what I needed - encouragement. Telling them about my goal gave me the strength I needed to continue on.
Don’t Compare Your Climb to Someone Else’s Middle
I remember seeing people coming down the Mountain – all smiley and happy and making it look all too easy. And there I was gasping for oxygen, having to take a rest every ten steps because my legs were on fire. At one point I caught myself comparing the way I was handling the climb to them. “Why does it look so easy for them?” “I must not be as in shape as they are.” “Why am I so weak?”
But then I made it! I climbed up that waterfall that seemed like I’d plunge to my death if I slipped. I took all the Instagram worthy photos I could. Celebrated my achievement and started on my descent. And you know what? It was easy! I was on such an adrenaline rush from reaching my goal that the entire downhill trek… I smiled ear-to-ear! I’m sure people going up thought I was ridiculous and might have been comparing their climb to me.
So here's the final lesson: if you're just starting out on your goal or dream, don't compare yourself to someone else who's already achieving success in that area. Everyone had their own climb at some point.
So there you have it. Climbing a Mountain is just what I needed to remind myself just how strong I am and to dream BIG. Bonus, it also reminded me just how incredibly blessed I am to have my husband as my partner in this life. He helps me live life to the fullest! (aww, gushy love stuff!)