Conquering Everest

I will come again and conquer you because as a mountain you can’t grow, but as a human, I can.

 

 

In 1953 Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay set out to conquer what was then the impossible climb to the top of Mount Everest.

Before 1953, there had been many expeditions amounting to over a dozen deaths including men from Hillary’s previous climb. After Hillary’s most recent failed attempt he was heard speaking to Mount Everest saying,

I will come again and conquer you because as a mountain you can’t grow, but as a human, I can.

Time passed, and they were ready to make another climb. Before Hillary and Norgay ascended the Mount Everest again they were asked that after the financial costs, all the lives lost, and failed attempts, why keep trying? To this Hillary replied,

It is not the mountain we conquer, it is ourselves.

I’m learning that my biggest challenge I face in life is looking myself in the mirror and facing my own demons/mountains. Conquering ourselves, as Hillary puts it, and realizing that we as humans grow to surpass our mountains is a personal journey, but we don’t have to walk it alone.

As feel-good as these quotes from Sir Edumnd Hillary are, for me they have lead to action and execution. I’m sure if Hillary and Norgay were alive today they would not just read memes and stories about climbing, but actually strap on their gear are go. So thank you for reading, and I hope this story hits home for you as it has for me. However, more importantly I hope you now take action. Know your mountain, and continue to make your climb.

How I Found Happiness

Happiness is the joy you feel while striving toward your potential.

What does happiness mean to you? Let me share what I’ve come to learn what happiness means to me. Thanks to Shawn Achor, my definition of happiness comes from how the ancient Greeks viewed happiness.

Happiness is the joy you feel while striving toward your potential.

Taking that definition of happiness to heart has changed everything for me. Through being self aware and realizing some of my main strengths are positivity, seeing and building other’s strengths, and being strategic, I’ve tripled down on those strengths and that’s made all the difference.  For me, knowing my strengths and tripling down on my strengths is how I move toward my potential. Knowing I’m doing that brings joy and happiness. How can it not?

Knowing that I am ultimately on the path towards achieving my potential, and realizing that I’m in it for the long haul and need to then execute patience brings joy to my heart. I feel happy!

If you’re unclear on what your potential is, I’d challenge you to find out your strengths by doing a StrengthsFinder test. If you’re already aware of what your strengths are, then realize that by focusing on your strengths can help you move toward your potential.

Feel the joy by striving toward your potential and enjoy the happiness that comes with that process.

Motivation – The Fool’s Bet

Zig Ziglar the author and world renowned speaker says motivation is a lot like showering. It’s useful, but it doesn’t last, so you need to repeat it often.

Motivation stems from the Latin root word movere, to make move. It can be frustrating to think that as leaders we need to constantly be motivating a team to give it their all and give their best work. I’m here to say there is another way.

Nothing outside of us will make us move for a sustained period of time. It comes from within. It comes from a choice we make to know our why and then be converted to it. So for any given project, process, or event you’re leading first ask yourself and then your team if you truly understand your why, and if you are committed to it.

Motivation is a fool’s bet because it does not last, is not genuine, and does not move the world. I challenge us to take a step back, ask ourselves and our team if we truly get our why, and ask how converted we are to making a change.

Worried about the how? That is something we each get to figure out on our own. Focus on the why and know the how will come.

The Sacredness of Sacrifice

Sacrifice. Even hearing the word at times can give the chills, and not in a positive way. However, there is beauty in the breakdown, and as we look closer we’ll gain a different perspective on what it means to sacrifice and why it should be something we strive for on a daily basis.

In its Latin roots, Sacra means “sacred rites,” while facere means “to do, perform.” To sacrifice is to perform a sacred act. Looking at the sacrifices we make as a sacred act brings the word into a different light. We all make sacrifices; the point is looking at those sacrifices we make for ourselves, loved ones, and strangers as a unique opportunity to learn and grow.

I know from personal experience that if I take a moment to step back and realize the sacrifices I make are sacred, my grief turns to gratitude and I press on with a grateful heart.

What sacred acts do you get to perform today?