5 Lessons I Learned From Escaping To The Mountains

As the chaotic year that has been 2020 started drawing to its conclusion, I was invited into the wild mountains by a dear friend. I had 100 reasons not to go, but I said yes.

I cancelled all plans and appointments and we headed off.

It was yet another lesson for me in letting go.

I let go of some stories and some control and some fear and a lot of plans and my structure and my work. I just put it ALL down for a few days.

And it was the most holistically beneficial thing that I could have done.

I have included some photos of the mountains we went to. This is the place where my heart dwells.

Cederberg skies

And then I cam across this, an extract from Derek Rivers’ website, and somehow it fitted into this post.

I hate to waste a single hour. I feel the precious value of time, most of the time. I imagine my time as worth $500 an hour, and ask myself what’s worth $500. Watching a TV show? Absolutely not. (“Game of Thrones” at 63 hours so far = $31,500 to watch.) Social media? Absolutely not. Focused learning or creating? Yep! Being with my kid? Always.

Derek Sivers

I could add one more – getting away from it all for a few days – Always!

When I am in the mountains, I can slow down. I can relax, because whatever monetary value I place on my life, it is worth it.

Being in the mountains brings me back to my centre. Reference from the Dreamworks movie Rise of The Guardians. It makes me humble again and gets everything back into their right place, in perspective.

Here are 5 lessons learned from hitting pause and heading into the mountains

my girls climbing up up up

1. Regaining Perspective

Stepping away helps to regain perspective.

I chose this crazy year to start a business. When our business supplying event flooring was closed due to covid (no events happening this year), I had to try to do something. I had discovered a community of online entrepreneurs and educators, and I took the leap, signed up, and joined them.

Which has turned out to be one of the best decisions I have made for myself in a long time. More about that further down.

I have spent the past months working and learning and creating, and along with homeschooling and dealing with the ever-changing challenges that this year has delivered to most of us, I may have lost some perspective.

Spreading myself too thin is a suitable description.

Making the decision to down tools and shove it all aside for a few days turned out to be another of the best decisions I have made for myself in a long time!

I came back having remembered what I love, who I am, who I love, and why I work. I regained perspective.

Life since that trip has felt a little easier, more simple, and I feel more empowered and less bothered by side stuff.

mountain pools

2. Reordering Priorities

Stepping away aids in clarity with regards to priorities.

I came back from the mountains with a clear sense of order. In my particular circumstances these are they:

  • First – my mental and physical health are a top priority, and the more I learn the more I believe this must come first, for our own sakes and for the sake of those we love. Even writing this, I find it hard not to place my family first, but I am learning about self care.
  • Second – my family.
    • Being present with them,
    • Being available for them.
  • Third – my work
    • This is important for my personal identity.
      • It is something independent,
      • it involves learning, and
      • personal development – more about that further down.
    • It is also related to legacy – leading by example for my girls
      • showing them women who work and care for families, and
      • creating good work, and
      • taking personal responsibility.

Having priorities in order simplifies every day decision making about how we spend our time.

view from the top

3. Remembering to Live Life

When life gets busy, and chaotic, as it has at times for us this year, it can be easy to get into the groove of the daily mundane and forget to live!

But life is short and special and if we have learnt anything this year, we have learnt about the fragility of our existence, and making our time here rich.

Escaping to the mountains reminded me that I needed to live a little, take a few risks, let go of non-essential things, have some fun, and enjoy this journey we are on.

Whatever it is that lights you up and shifts you out of the daily routine and comfort zone – go there a bit.

black water, red rocks

4. Experiencing the Really Simple Life

There is always room for more simplification.

Nowhere supports the simple life like getting into nature and off the grid. I find it all simmers down to essentials in nature.

I was with my daughters and a favourite friend and her boys.

Cell phone reception was sketchy at best, the skies were clear, there was fresh mountain water in which to swim, and some challenging hikes.

We had water to drink, enough food to eat. We had a place to sleep and our transport to get us in and out of the mountains.

The sun rose, and set, the stars came out, we slept, we woke. We connected. We enjoyed being immersed in such ancient natural beauty, every minute. We watched the light changing and the leaves above moving in the breeze.

We lay on the earth.

And our days were simple.

It is a good thing to get back to basics.

coming down the mountain

5. Renewing My Feelings of Fresh Vigour Vitality and Creativity!

I write about improving quality of life.

That is one of my main messages for those reading my blog posts or scrolling my Instagram feed.

Yet, being human, I get bogged down in my own life details.

So it was such a treat to realise that a few days out of town and in the wild had reset me. It improved my quality of life, because I came back re-energised and full of fresh vitality and creativity. My work became easier. My small resentments shrunk.

I had time and perspective and my priorities were in better order. I had focused on the essentials and lived simply.

Life has a way of tightening up, when we return to ‘reality’ – but escapes into the wild, if we can ever have a change of scene – are the antidote to all the tightness, and help to loosen us up!

climbing and climbing
ancient rocks

Into The Wild While Running A New Business

I chose this crazy year to start a business. Deciding to head into the mountains was a bit of a burdened decision. I had just signed up for the next level of my digital business education and missed the first week of an 8 week challenge. So I was somewhat torn.

The Team

I contacted the team and mentioned this and was given all the support I needed to go and live my life and come back and catch up. Which I have done.

The lifestyle-oriented approach is so in line with how I believe we should live: work to live and not vice versa.

Automation Makes It Possible

Thanks to the automation possible in running a digital business, I was able to set up a few things, like my Instagram feed, which carried on operating while I was away.

It is a whole new way of working for me; not trading my time for income.

Community Support

For me having some form of accountability and support has made and continues to make the journey more enjoyable and easier.

I was fortunate enough to have found a community this year. The teams and members have supported me through much personal growth and helped when I was stuck in business too.

Again on this occasion I had nothing but support and encouragement from them all.

New Skills

This year I have learnt new skills. They have enabled me to start my own business. I have so much to learn, but I have started something new. I have made some forward progress in a year that was somewhat backward. I am setting myself up for a future lived on my terms, which feels powerful and safe.

The most learning for me has been my personal growth. It was unexpected and unlooked for, yet immensely empowering. I continue to stretch and grow and feel expansive.

Experience It For Yourself

I can not recommend this journey enough.

I started by watching these same free training videos.

Once convinced, I signed up for the training, and started to learn skills, change my mindset and set up my own business.

So if you want to grow and learn and enrich your life, click on the button below to get access to the same free videos. They are worth a watch.

Learn New Skills, supported. You might just change your life.