The difficulty makes it special




I remember the first 13,000 ft mountain I climbed - I can see it vividly in my mind.   I remember the pain of not enough oxygen in each breath.  More than anything I remember the feeling of having done something that I'd never done before.  I'd only recently quit smoking, after years of the bad habit, and I didn't think that I'd ever climb high altitudes - but there I was.

If you want to climb mountains then you have to deal with the terrain - there are no short cuts to the top, but the effort put in makes it special.  This doesn't mean that we should create obstacles, nor do we have to take the hardest route to make the trek worth taking.  The view from the top of a mountain is the same no matter which trail is taken.

Learn to embrace the challenges in your ventures as well as the rewards.  If it were easy or simple then everyone would do it and it would be nothing special.  By learning NOT to attach negative emotions to challenging tasks and obstacles, we can see them more objectively for what they are - a part of the journey.  Be aware of your self talk and the labels that you place on the tasks and events in your life and enjoy the journey.

* Special alert -A give away and an opportunity to help a little girl who was burned on Easter - please visit My Journey to Ithaca

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11 comments:

  1. I appreciate this perspective. I've come to realize that the next phase of my life is simply what's unfolding, obstacles and all. Imagining it's my dream come true is clearly a path to confusion!

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    1. I've come to believe that having any concrete expectations of the future is a path to confusion. An open agenda works best for me.

      Dan

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  2. Embracing both the good and difficult (yin and yang) is the journey. I'm finding I need to constantly remind myself to be more patient and kind, with others and especially myself on this facsinating journey called life.

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  3. I think we get negative toward challenges, when we doubt our skill and ability to overcome them. Difficult times teach us some valuable lessons about ourselves.

    P.S. Thank you for linking to my post!

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    1. Fear is a direct path to darkness, I've no doubt.

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  4. My wife, girls, and I went hiking at this place near us. It's a really steep hike to the top of this outlook. Steep enough in fact, that at the bottom, you can pay to ride a horse to the top. The horse route is what most people do. But my wife, girls, and I hiked. And it was tough. We had to stop and breathe, and we sweated a lot. But man, when we got to the top, WOW! What a view! And I think it was made all the more awesome by how hard we worked to get there. The people on the horses sorta would look, shrug, and walk back to their horses to go down. So while we shouldn't be seeking out the toughest roads, sometimes the toughest roads come with the most benefit, even if the reward looks the same on paper as the easy road.

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    1. I agree TB, that a reward well deserved is better enjoyed. I was referring to the fact that some make their lives and paths unnecessarily difficult and I wonder at their motives.

      Dan

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  5. You are giving me flashbacks Dan to when I hiked Peru (yes, the whole country, it only took 7 weeks), I was in my 20's but I will never forget the first time I tried to climb a mountain in the high altitude of that country. I was in good shape and I had to take baby steps. It was extremely mentally and physically challenging. I was fortunate to be with a group of very optimistic Australians and Brits who where determined to get us all up that little hill. I think I learned that you don't have to go it alone, support is acceptable, and sometimes it really important!

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    1. I'm envious Diane. I would love to hike Peru. I've taken a more adventurous outlook on life lately. My wife and I will be on many adventures over the next few years. Perhaps Peru will be in there somewhere.

      Dan

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  6. I have never hiked to that altitude, but you are so right, it's the accomplishment that means everything no matter how hard or how many obstacles were in my way to get there. Of course some of the biggest obstacles in my way have been the people who told me I couldn't do something, they didn't believe in me enough. It was always fun to prove to myself they were wrong.

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  7. One of life's greatest challenges is to overcome false limitations put upon us by ourselves and others.

    Dan

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