Climbing Upward

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I’ve bebefore climbing upwarden waking up early for the last few weeks to take a morning walk. I live on a mountain, so, while the first part of the walk is easy, turning around and climbing back up is anything but.

I discovered a few days ago that keeping my eyes no more than a few feet in front of me made the trek back up easier to manage, because my brain doesn’t psych me out about the distance from where I am to where I am going like it does when I’m staring upward. (I also discovered that distracting my brain makes a huge difference as well. If I’m listening to something on the way up, my brain has something to do than focus on what it is usually complaining about.

Yesterday, though, I decided to look fiercely at the distance and climbed with determination. I was listening to one of my new favorite songs for motivation (“Fight Song” by Rachel Platten, if you are curious) and I wanted to prove that I can override the grievances of the monkey mind. I reach the top and felt a wave of profound joy. (Or endorphins…whatever).

Today (again, listening to “Fight Song” – once I find a song that I really dig, I treat it like crack, until I am sick of it) I decided to pay attention to neither the road or the distance, but focus on how I was using my legs to push forward. It was easiest climb yet. My gaze went from my legs to the ground, then to the distance, and to the trees around me. It was not no longer mattered where my gaze fell, because I was centered in what I was doing, not where I was going. I could easily assess where I was, where I was headed, and how fast I was moving, but I kept my mind on the action and did it with deliberate focus. It changed everything. I was at the top of the road before I realized it.

Top of the climb
I often think of my walk as a metaphor. The walk down is going inward – an introspection (something I have practiced for most of my adult life).The walk back up is stretching out of my comfort zone, achieving things I would never have imagined possible (something that is quite new for me, at least on the level that I am practicing now).

As I climb, I think of the crazy things I’ve accomplished this year and the far crazier things I’ll slamdunk next year.

Today, I feel like I’ve discovered the key to the climb and to striving in general. It’s beautifully encapsulated in a quote by James Clear that I discovered a few months ago and have been obsessed with, but didn’t fully grasp until now.

“Fall in love with boredom. Follow love with repetition and practice. Fall in love with the process of what you do and let the results take care of themselves.”

This sings to me.

Falling in love with our mundane, daily actions brings us forward to the life we seek.

Our lives are made up of our years, our years of our months, our months of our days, our days of our minutes. My newest question is “How am I spending my minutes?”

Am I avoiding/complaining/numbing or am I stretching/learning/pushing? This is my new method of weighing what I will do at any given moment.

Will I sometimes forget? Oh, yes! (Those who know me know how ridiculously distractible I am.) But I will, at some point, remember, and will bring myself back into alignment with the growth I am striving for, each step taking me higher than the last.


Your turn! Leave a comment. I want to know what’s up in your world! 

What are you currently striving for?

What are you putting off until you have more time, or figure out what you are doing, or have “enough” money?

What reminders do you use to boost you when you are in danger of succumbing to the desire for comfort over progress?


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8 Responses

  1. Cindy Bischoff

    I’m fighting my lazy gene! Especially in the morning!!! Grrrrr!!!

  2. Kim Forman

    Even after my crazy, amazing feeling yesterday, I still work up not wanting to work out. But I’m on my way right now. Don’t give in!!! ❤️

  3. Megan

    I am taking action, but my brain hasn’t reached that point of believing yet. I’m going to keep faking it til I make it. Thank you for posting. I’m inspired! I want to keep growing and reaching, but I also want netflix. I will keep doing the positive actions until I feel it. Wash, rinse, repeat.

  4. Kim Forman


    More mornings that not, my brain tries to convince me not to climb that hill. The only thing that keeps me from giving in and going back to sleep is my newly discovered understanding of just how tricky the brain is in its attempt to derailed our goals.

    For the biggest boost, you have to know WHY you want the change. You have to spell it out and lock your focus on what you REALLY want, rather than what will feel good right now. The more you override those brain lies, the easier it becomes to ignore them! 🙂

  5. Diana Meyers

    I loved how you explained how you shifted your thought process towards what you were doing and not where you were going. I love that song and that quote made a heck of a lot of sense too! I relate so much also about the distractibility thing. My own mind travels fast and far wanting to reach for so many things. To get focused and STAY focused is always a major achievement. *Onward!

  6. Kim Forman

    Hi Diana! Whew…focus. I used to loathe that word! The phrase “You just have to pick something and focus on it!” was a constant refrain in my life for more than a decade. To me, the idea of focus felt like death, because to focus was to say no to a thousand other things.

    Now, I see that I can focus in a serial pattern. It’s still sometimes a bit of a struggle, but I can do it.

    As for the shift of attention to what I was doing, it was a huge discovery for me. I feel like it has changed my entire perspective!

    Thanks for your support! 😊


    Ever onward, ever upward! Sometimes the burden feels Sisyphean, other times like a bundle of feathers buoying me along…

    I’m working on moving my body more, drinking less alcohol, drinking more water, and touching my spiritual core. I’m finding difficult things there, little knots that need unsnarling. Some of them are daunting, but now that I know they are there, I can’t leave them alone and pretend they don’t exist! <3

  8. Kim Forman

    It’s a process! Taking small steps, consistently, is my new way of moving forward without the overwhelm. 🙂

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