BLOG: Say Yes to Hard Things... You'll Thank Yourself

Have you ever said “yes” to doing something when you didn’t know exactly what it would require from you?

That’s exactly what saying yes to climbing my first fourteener was like when I said “yes, I’d love to do that… SOMEDAY.” When those words came out of my mouth, I hadn’t REALLY considered what it would require or what I was signing up for.

Two years ago, Jake and I were walking in my old neighborhood in Austin, holding hands, new in our love story, and talking about what it’d be like to climb a fourteener together. He’d already climbed several, more times than he could count. It was the joy he had as we talked about accomplishing it together that inspired me- still makes me smile.  

At the time, I was 40 lbs heavier, addicted to sugar, working an unfulfilling sales job, and struggling with believing in myself.

As we were talking about it, I knew I’d have to become a different person in order to accomplish something like that.

First, I’d have to be someone who believed I could take on that challenge.

The idea of it was exhilarating, to think I would be the type of person that could stay committed to the training process. The type of person who could accomplish it no matter the level of difficulty.

Now, reflecting back to that day we originally had this conversation. There are several things I realize I had to say “yes” to before taking this on. It actually makes me quite emotional- in a good way. Sitting here at my computer realizing how I decided to become a new person long before I said yes to climbing my first fourteener.

What I mean by saying yes long before I decided to climb Mt. Langley is this.

I started to have a vision of the type of person I would have to become in order to take on a big challenge.

It’s how I started to say “yes” to the things I had been putting off or quitting once they got hard.

I said, “yes to prioritizing my physical health”. I worked on lowering my over desire for food. I started finding pleasure outside of food and alcohol. I became a person who worked out as a lifestyle, not as a result.

I said, “yes to prioritizing my mental health”. I worked on managing my thoughts. I started to watch how I talked to myself or criticized other people. I took responsibility for how I felt, instead of looking at my circumstances to blame my mood on.

I said, “yes to improving my relationships”. I worked on accepting people as they were. I stopped blaming other people for my feelings getting hurt. I improved my relationship with myself. I started to enjoy engaging with other people more by getting outside of my own head.

I said, “yes to hard things”. I worked on my fear. I embraced the discomfort that comes with growth. I sought out physical and mental challenges to practice doing hard things.

The opportunity to prepare for a physical and mental challenge like this was motivating.

The opportunity to experience this challenge was indescribable.

It’s empowering to know we can do ANYTHING we want when we're willing to change our lifestyle to prepare for amazing opportunities.