I found myself once again on the summit of a mountain, and once again I was reading a book. Recently, I had made a habit out of reading a book on top of a mountain. I think the open sky aids in Having an open mind. This time, I was reading my copy of The Declaration of Independence & The Constitution of The United States I bought while at basic combat training. I don’t know why, but with the current political environment of 2017, I felt it was a good idea to bring this book on today's hike.
While standing at the summit, it was too snowy and wet to sit, I began thinking about the people who fought for our independence. The experiences those people went through during the wild and at sometimes dangerous times creating our young country were unlike anything most people will ever undergo, and that in itself is rich. Allow me to explain. I was a competitive runner for about fifteen years, and although I still run almost every day, my competitive days are behind me. Not by age or injury, but by choice.
Life is about experiences, and if we stick with one experience we limit our ability to grow. when I joined the Army National Guard, it wasn’t because I thought I would excel, but because it is the polar opposite of my entrepreneurial lifestyle. Now instead of making the rules and setting my schedule, I was waking up at half past dark and doing PT (physical training) in the freezing cold. But that was ok, that was a new experience and because of it, I grew.
We don’t grow by sticking with the same routine over our entire lives, yes, we will be come very good at our craft, but to be great, you must bring lessons from other experiences to your craft. Colonel John Boyd of the United States Air Force, the proclaimed strategist, was well known for bringing skills he learned from other fields into the one he was currently pursuing. He as I, believe that knowledge you gain and skills you acquire in one field will only improve your pursuits in another.
As I stand here writing this blog post on the trail side of a mountain, I can see other summits in the distance and those summits bring value to the one I was just on. They add to the experience, craftsmanship is like a single summit, it’s great, but mastering a craft is like having an entire range of summits at your fingertips. So go out there and hike many summits, adding experience to your life.