Saturday, August 27, 2011
Your Climb Is Unique and It's OK
But they usually have a story or two about some of the new routes people climb both on known cliffs and others that have never been climbed before. Of course most of the great climbers like to outdo the person before them and stretch their limits to new extremes.
Yes, some of you climbers out there are pretty amazing! You push the envelope and inspire others who need to be challenged to do something more difficult.
But new routes don't pertain only to those who climb on rock. Those who are climbing their own personal mountains also have to chart new routes. Yes, there are lessons to be learned from others who have climbed before you, but don't think that your experience has to mirror those of others who you talk to or read about.
Your "route" will be determined by a number of factors - your particular struggle, your personality, your resources, your time frame and your fellow climbers. Push aside many of the comments from well-meaning friends and family who say things like, "Well, when that happened to me . . .," or "I heard about a friend who went through the same thing and she . . . ."
Sure, learn what you can from their experience but remember your route doesn't have to follow anyone else's route. Chart new territory, be OK with the uniqueness of your experience, climb differently than all the others if you need to.
You see while using the example of someone else to spur us on can be healthy, comparisons have a way of deflating us. We can subtly begin to think that we should or have to or must do what they did and it's rare that we can anyway. We don't have their skills, personality and life circumstances. It's a lie frankly that somehow we must always equal or top other people.
Instead, the beauty of life is that each climb, each journey and each mountain route is different. Embrace that truth rather than shun it or war against it.
Just don't quit. Keep going. Never quit climbing. The views on the way up and the one from the top are all worth it.