Are you a skier or snowboarder? Perhaps you enjoy the mountains in other ways, like snowshoeing or touring. If you are drawn to mountains and leadership concepts, I believe you’ll enjoy the lessons in this post.
If you’re more of a beach person and don’t like the mountains, that’s okay. Perhaps this post is not for you, but you can hopefully find other leadership advice on my blog.
Now for all you mountain lovers… I’ve got a confession to make! I grew up in the midwest and never really experienced the mountains as a kid or teen. Skiing was too expensive a sport for me to engage in, so perhaps I created a limiting belief that “this was a sport for other people to enjoy, not me”.
That all changed when I won a contest (a somewhat grueling Marketing Challenge, a long story for another time!) that paid for a week’s stay in Sun Valley Idaho. I fell in love with skiing and vowed to shatter my limiting belief that this sport was out of my reach financially.
But learning to ski as an adult is very different from learning as a kiddo.
Kiddos just go for it and experience things more viscerally.
We adults intellectualize things. We’re always trying to figure everything out. Throughout my journey of learning how to ski, I started to get some insights that reflected back into my work in leadership and my work with corporate clients.
I’ve distilled the lessons into six “Mantras” that I write about in my book, Mountain Mantras: Wellness and Life Lessons from the Slopes.
#1: Change Your Lens On Life (stay positive)
#2: Get some good boots on (lay your foundation with education and expertise)
#3: Zoom Out for the Best View (set a vision for your life)
#4: Plant Your Poles, Set Your Goals (create goals so that you can achieve your vision)
#5: Embrace the Yard Sale (Learn from Mistakes)
#6: Throw Yourself Down the Mountain (engage fully in whatever you are doing in the present moment)
Mantras are phrases that are repeated in order to gain power and acceptance by the subconscious mind as they are repeated.
What does “Change Your Lens on Life” mean?
Change Your Lens On Life is really about the power of positive psychology. Staying positive, especially in the face of adversity, can go a long way in getting out of a rut in life and getting back to a positive state. We all have a role in manifesting our own lives, and our attitudes (either positive or negative) attract people and situations.
What Does “Zoom Out” mean?
I learned being up there in the mountains, elevated above all the noise and the to-do lists, and just taking things one by one. I think that’s something that people should learn to do more. It’s all about perspective.
What about “Throw Yourself Down the Mountain”?
That mantra is really another way to say: “Commit 100% percent”.
When you’re skiing down a mountain, you’ve really got to commit. You must get your weight forward. Get your weight over your skis; otherwise, you’ll just be in the “back seat”, as they call it, and guess what: you can’t control your speed and you end up going out of control.
You manage your mindset to be somewhat fearless. You might need to engage your inner child and seek out the “air” or the fun in your adventure down the mountain.
Committing fully to what you are doing is a much-needed reminder that we need to face fears and breakthrough them in order to get the most out of life.
For more information, please see Mountain Mantras: Wellness and Life Lessons from the Slopes.
I discuss the topic of skiing as wellness and leadership training on this recent radio interview, Sharkie’s Pep Talk. Listen to the interview here.