As a life coach we have to make sure we walk the walk not just talk the talk and it was my time to do just that, and what would I learn from this experience.
One of my statements for this year is
‘To accept challenges that help me see more of the world’.
The challenge was to walk up
La Sierra De Bernia and sleep out in the open overnight. Sounds wonderful and will help me see much more of the scenery around here. Sleeping in the open will help my body to detox and allow all the electrical energy that upsets my adrenal glands to drain away back into the earth. A fabulous opportunity to enjoy all that life has to offer.
S – start right now – yes I will accept the challenge as it will be good for me.
Having not been able to do more than a gentle stroll over these last few years then a hill walk will be a great place to start. A walk time of 4 hours at an easy pace from the bottom to the top, not starting halfway up at the little village. It even sounds like Snowdon were I walked from sea level and not from the visitor car park. Must remember though that Snowdon was 15 years ago!
O – Others can help and that I would ask for help.
Judith is an experienced hill walker and has taken the time to find tracks and paths that she can put together for great walks. With her love of the outdoors and also yoga stops along the way then I know I am in good hands.
L – Learn – oh dear I only checked this one out afterwards.
Now Judith is Norwegian and I perhaps should have thought a bit more about what a hill walk means to an English person and what a hill walk means to a Norwegian!
My nearest highest Mountain is Snowdon at 1085 meters and I last did that over 15 years ago. In Norway there are 291 peaks over 2,000 metres (6,562 ft)!
A – Actions – I would do what it took.
I didn’t have any equipment except my Aldi walking boots, so comfortable that I preferred them to my £120 proper walking boots. So doing what it took meant borrowing a rucksack, sleeping bag, cooking equipment and my friends knowledge.
C – Communication – That I needed someone to talk to.
Communication also meant that I would get the chance to learn more about my new friend, that we could share what seemed to be a similar way of thinking about life. Living in the ‘now’ is important to both of us.
E – Enjoy your new life as you are ready to move on.
I guess this was about learning from the experience and what I could take forward from it.
The question is, ‘well how did it go?’.
The first half of the walk was steep and pleasant with opening views of Altea and Benidorm. The tracks
zig-zagged across the hillside with loose stones and solid rocks clearly showing the route to take.
It was definitely what I would have called a hill walk.
Halfway point there is a small village and a lot of people drive here and start their walk into the mountains from here.
Starting the mountain walk and you soon come across a blue door in the mountainside hiding a beautiful little well. Judith topped up her bottles and I did the same as this was our last point for getting fresh water and meant that we had not had that burden to carry to this point.
From the car park to the Fort is about a 50 minute walk.
To get here you have to cross a lot of scree slopes and I was amazed that people were going across these in normal shoes and carrying children in their arms. Having faith in your abilities or was it a touch of craziness!
Then it was onto the mountain and I realised that Snowdon was smaller than this! La Sierra De Bernia rises 1128 meters above sea level and we had probably climbed about 1/4 of that so far with the steepest part to come. I started to doubt my ability. I felt fine in all physical ways but the steepness was something new to me and those scree slopes well they were a pleasant stroll in the park compared to this next bit.
In a way I was the one being coached here, I was the one stepping out of my comfort zone and I was the one who needed the help. Judith encouraged me, showed me the small steps to take. My adrenal glands had been working on overtime for a while and my balance was starting to go and when I reached a scree slope and thought ‘No way….’ she showed me my options. We could go back the way we had come or, and yes it will be tough, just up ahead is a wonderful green field with views over both sides of the mountain where we can sleep.
I had to process the information and think through my options and I realised that even though I thought I had given 100%, there was still just that little spark left in me that wanted to see the view from the other side of the mountain. Yes taking those steps would be tough and with someone there to talk it through with I could see that I could do a bit more, I could reach inside and find that little extra to be able to say yes, I did it!
I did make it and those sunset pictures prove it. As does the picture of my ‘bed’ for the night, a patch of cleared away earth for my sleeping bag and mat, yet it went unused!
Not used, because the winds came in, howling around the mountain top and my sleeping bag was only a summer weight one and it would have been too cold out in the open. So I settled for a little shelter behind the mountain rocks to help me through the night. I didn’t sleep, the noise was too much and the cold was over powering and I also forgot ‘living in the now’. I spent the night worrying about going around the rock face on a thin ledge with scree rocks in that wind.
It was no wonder that I saw the sunrise…..
It was time for breakfast and some entertainment from some goats. They were only playing as even though they were ‘fighting’ their tails were wagging!
Then it was time to head back down and of course my fear of the high wind came back to me as it was still gusting. Yet as we started the walk the wind calmed and the return journey was a really enjoyable climb and stroll back down.
Yes it was tough and my balance was a bit bad but with support from Judith I managed to overcome my fears and had only one slight fall.
Back safely at the Fort we stopped and practiced our yoga. I took time to use EFT to face my fears and then to anchor the calm and beauty of the place in my memory to recall it again and again.
So as a coach walking the walk, quite literally, what did I learn from this. It was a great moment to realise that the power within should not be under-estimated. That living in the now is better than worrying about the future. Using all your support networks will help you achieve far more than you will on your own. Small steps towards your new direction will get you there in the best way possible. Sometimes we all reach a bit too far, I did on this occasion and I learned that sometimes accepting that your best is good enough is a great lesson to have.
I hope my walk and honesty will inspire you to achieve something and I want to say Thanks to my Mountain Goat friend Judith for being so sure footed with her feet and so strong with her helping words.