Mental health, blogger

A Lesson About Goals

A couple of years ago, I climbed a mountain. It was a summer holiday in the north of England, and for some reason, I thought it would be a good idea. I started by walking through fields, past cows and farmland, and I felt confident. This will be a breeze I thought. Unfortunately, I was cheated, as unlike other fells and hills I’d climbed, the incline was particularly flat, and somehow, I’d convinced myself that the whole journey would be this way.

An hour in to the walk, and with only a mile or so to go, I sat on some rocks, feeling incredibly sorry for myself. My feet were sore, my quads were aching, and my calves were raw. I had a choice. Do I walk one more mile to reach the top, or two and a half miles to get back to our hotel? Let me tell you, it was a genuinely a tough decision. What did I choose? With substantial hesitation, and a face like a moody toddler who’d just dropped her favourite dummy, I rose and sulked my way towards the top. I’m not a runner, and at the time I was fairly unfit, so I hated every second of it.

With only 200m to go, I was exhausted. My legs were jelly but as the incline was so steep, I was able to use my hands to scramble upwards.

And against all odds, I reached the top. A wave of relief swept over me and my goal was complete. I had climbed Ingleborough. I had done it in an hour and half. I had no injuries and had not got lost. In a moment of celebration that I had reached the top, it suddenly occurred to me – I’m at the top of a mountain – the goalpost had moved, and then I had to make the long journey all over again, and I was gutted.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing; I discovered something important about goals that day that I’ve kept in mind ever since. Achieving a goal in your day to day life is like climbing a mountain. It can be a total slog that leaves your body exhausted and your brain fried, but you can’t give up mid-way through. Then you reach the top, but you can’t stay there, for a new goal has begun – you have to keep moving, keep pressing, keep progressing. It’s disheartening to realise that it’s not over, and you still have 3 and a half miles to go, but if you don’t try achieve your next goal, how can you possibly achieve your dreams?

Now, it may sound pessimistic, but I don’t think about achieving one goal as being ‘successful’. There’s always something else that will move you on to your next step in your fitness or career; something else that will improve your mindfulness; something else that will make you even more of a success. So, keep striving towards that summit, and the next one, and the next, until you eventually do reach your dreams.

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Hey and welcome to my little corner Abbey's chronicles, a blog where I share my raw and unbiased thoughts on issues on mental health, lifestyle, wellness and self care. No topic is ever off limit as long as it affects lives and relationships, it's subject to discussion. This blog strives to provide solace for everyone going through issues they might not be able to talk about on a daily. My name is Abbey, a mental health advocate and enthusiast with a love for helping people who feel alone or are facing issues relating to life and mental health issues with the aim of raising awareness as well as providing succor. This blog was started as an avenue for me to deal with my own monsters. The aim of starting this blog was to for it to serve as some sort of therapy during my darkest times of depression and though it isn't all over yet, I hope this blog serves as a form of therapy to others going through similar issues relating to life and mental health. Finally in my free time I can be seen drowning in movies, food, sleep and books. I guess I am a blogger at night and an aspiring medical student at other times.

2 Comments

  • notyoumate

    What a fab blog post. You created a super picture with your words.
    A good pair of walking boots helps – which I’m sure you have anyway !
    Pre-kids, we’d do this sort of thing, we are gradually getting back to it.

  • Hannah Read

    I like this anology and I experienced that exact feeling when I trekked a mountain last year… Just when you think you’ve done it there’s so much more to achieve! It’s a good reminder as well that goals don’t stop in life and it would be boring if they did to be honest – you’ve just got to keep hitting them.

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