I have been walking up mountains since I was in my early twenties. At first I hated it: the only reason I started was because my boyfriend-at-the-time decided we should get fit. Gradually however, as the weeks passed, my mind adjusted itself to accept what I was doing, and my body followed.
Now many times when I face a large organizing job, it reminds me of those qualities I had to learn when tackling a summit. No matter how large a task you are faced with, these qualities will help you achieve it:
Be Here Now: When staring at a monumental summit, it can be tempting to panic or to lose faith that it will ever be attained. Typical panic thoughts: I can’t do that; it’s too much; it’s too far; I’ll never make it. The antidote is to become aware of this very instant of Now. Ask yourself: How am I right now? Can I take another step? I am breathing, aren’t I? Most times, by asking this question, we find that we are OK in this very moment. It is just the thought of what is to be accomplished that is causing panic. Once we realize this, we can move forward, even if it is to take the tiniest step. Which leads me to…
Pace yourself: If you were climbing a big mountain, you would not start off running. You would find a pace at which it is comfortable to talk, or sing, or just breathe comfortably. Nothing is more stressful than looking at a summit, and knowing you are going to suffer all the way to the top. It not only makes the journey unbearable, it is not necessary! Take tiny steps. But take them. Make a schedule that you are able to stick to. And be sure to leave time for fun and smelling the flowers.
Believe you will get there: Nothing, and I mean nothing, will sap your energy for the task at hand, than inner skepticism and nay-saying. At the very least, resolve to do as much as you can, without giving in to negativity. Believe in yourself. If you do your best, then that is the best you can do. And don’t let anyone (including you) tell you otherwise!
Ask for help: Sometimes just having someone to talk to, to encourage you, will be enough. Other times you may need a guide or a climbing partner at the other end of the rope. Either way, the summit becomes less daunting when the climb is shared.
Invest in the right gear: When tackling a summit, preparation is essential. What equipment will you need before you begin? Do some research and some thinking before you even take the first step. Then invest in the most well-made equipment you can afford, and which appeals to your sense of style.
Get comfortable: Are you staying hydrated? Are you wearing comfortable shoes and clothing? Is there adequate ventilation? Good lighting? Did you get enough sleep? Would it help to put some music on? Never underestimate the power of being comfortable in achieving a goal.
Tiny task for the day:
Pick a small area of disorder that may have been bothering you for a while. Now pick just one small part of that – and clear it.