I was returning from my second attempt to climb Everest. The Nepal earthquake put a stop to that. Three guys on my team didn’t come home after an avalanche obliterated base camp. I did.
Right now, many people have returned for another crack. This season all is well. Many are making their summit bids and a couple of days from standing atop the world.
Let me quote Bruce Lee: “To hell with circumstances, I make opportunities.”
The world owes us success, right? Wrong. The mountain doesn’t give a damn how hard you’ve worked, how much you’ve raised, how hard you trained. Life in general has a similar response. Many young people nowadays feel entitled to this success. They are setting themselves up for disappointment.
First, let me take you back to January this year. I ran a half marathon. Well… almost. I got to mile 8, and thought; “sod it!”. This hurts. I quit. Why bother? And I walked to the side line, then home. A bad episode of long-seated and recurring mental health problems had something to do with it… but I know I can run 13 miles – I am known to run marathons alone sometimes just because I feel like it! But we all have vulnerabilities. Even the ‘tough Everest climbers’. What matters is how we respond to these pitfalls. It’s how we use them to grow, to get back up and go for another bite, rather than letting them grow on us; like having manure thrown at you – and throwing flowers back.
On the first anniversary of the earthquake, I organised “Walk4Nepal” with a great charity PHASE Worldwide to commemorate this occasion. Over 120 people reached the top of Mount Snowdon in a beautiful show of resilience and generosity. The event has now raised £17,000 for Nepal to fund 2 health posts for an entire year – good job I didn’t go to Everest this year, eh!
P.S. I raced another half marathon in February. I knocked 5 minutes off my PB and won the under-2o age group. I’ll leave you to figure that one out… 😉
Excited to announce the first dates of my ICEFALL speaking/book-signing tour.
– Chester, 13th May: Cheshire County Sports Club, doors open 6:30pm – 8:30pm, £5 on the door.
– Keswick, 20th May: King Kong Climbing Centre, doors open 6:30pm – 8pm. £5 on the door.
– London, 22nd June: ‘Tales of Adventure’. The Devereux, WC2R 3JJ – http://www.talesofadventure.info/wordpress/our-next-event-2/
– Sheffield, date TBC: Meadowhall shopping centre
– Hull, 25th June: Princes Quay shopping centre – 12:45pm – 3pm (signing only)