All You Need to Do is Think About The Next Tiny Step You’re Going to Take. It Will Get You Where You Want To Go Faster Than Focusing on The Finish Line.
I went hiking in Yosemite National Park with one of my best friends. The weather was perfect, we had our water bottles, walking shoes, and hats and were ready to hike up to the footbridge and then take The Mist Trail 1.5 miles to see Vernal Fall. This wasn’t your average mile and a half hike. We were walking up 1,000 ft to an altitude of 5,000 ft. That’s my way of letting you know that I wasn’t totally off my game for stopping on the side to catch my breath a couple of times. It was a tiny blow to my ego, however, when on numerous occasions a couple of people twice my age jogged past me as I was gripping a rock.
I was determined to see the beauty that awaited me and that feeling of accomplishment I’d get when standing on top of a rock as I felt the spray on my cheek. So, I kept walking. The mist trail is on the cliff’s edge and to make matters more “fun” as I’ve gotten older I’ve developed a bit of vertigo. Especially, when standing on the side of a mountain. Just at the point when your legs start to burn you hit a granite stairway of 600 steps. The good news is that at the top of the steps is the waterfall (after you jump off the trail and do a tiny bit of additional rock climbing, of course).
I started getting mad at myself for not being in better shape but at the bottom of those stairs I made a conscious mindset shift. I decided to only focus on the next step in front of me. When I focused on the waterfall I had thoughts like, “this is so hard” and “I wish I was there already”. Then when I switched to just climbing another step I found myself consistently feeling proud each time I accomplished that task. I, also, felt more grounded in my footing because my mind wasn’t going in a million directions. I wanted to look up so many times to see how much farther I had to go but knew that it would make me feel frustrated so I stuck with my plan.
I was shocked when all of a sudden I was at the top of those steps. Let’s not pretend that sh*@ wasn’t hard, but investing in the process as opposed to only thinking about the end result made that part of the hike a lot more fun and it felt like I got their quicker. So, next time you’re feeling overwhelmed stop to think if you’re thinking about the end result (climbing a mountain) and if it might make you feel better to only think about the next step.
I’d love to hear about a project you’re working on that might benefit from some focus shifting. Tell me about it in the comments below.
By sharing your ideas, you just may inspire someone else to do something they didn’t think possible.