Waking up jet lagged and a little disoriented, I decided to hike to the tallest peak here in Split, Croatia, to get the full birds eye view of where I just arrived and to get grounded (literally).
Finding myself out of breath 3-minutes into the trek, I was suddenly blasted back to April when I hiked the tallest summit in Central America, Tajumulco. Between the altitude and carrying a 60-liter bag, to say I got out of breath every few minutes is an understatement.
As someone who considers themself pretty fit, I found myself struggling toward the back of the group on the way up.
“Instead of moving quickly, then needing to take breaks to recover because you’re out of breath, try taking veryyyy small steps and never stop. Find a pace that works for you and stick with it.” One of the French hiking guides saw me struggling and offered me this little nugget of wisdom.
And sure enough, poco a poco, little by little, slowly slowly, I made it to the top without stopping again.
Though I started in the back in the beginning, I ended up passing several people in my group who were doing the start-stop technique and struggling.
The combo of finding a pace that I could sustain (much slower than I typically would expect for myself) and hiking solo up this gorgeous serene summit, gave me a lot of time to reflect and left me with several ah-has that I’m re-remembering today.
Poco a poco “wins” the race and applies to every aspect of life.
It’s the tortoise and the hare.
Especially in a society where we’ve been trained to see instant results and where we can see “overnight success” stories or all of people’s “big wins”, it’s easy to get wrapped up in the idea of getting “there” really quickly.
As a college student, “there” may mean knowing what you want to major in and having a life/career path planned out.
As a 20-something, “there” may mean finding a job you actually like and earning a salary that makes you feel successful. It could also mean meeting a life partner.
As an entrepreneur, “there” may mean making 6-figures, hiring support, and having a clear business model.
As a human, “there” may mean being at a weight you feel good in or feeling settled in your life.
Nobody’s “there” truly happens instantly. Usually it’s a long slow journey - but often this is not the part we hear or see.
With social media, it’s easier now more than ever to compare ourselves to our peers, role models, or even celebrities. Seeing many of them in situations we’d love to be in, but having no context of the journey it took them to get there.
Steve Jobs didn’t build Apple overnight. Marie Forleo bartended on the side for years as she build up her life coaching business. All of my friends who’ve finally met “the one” dated several other people on the way.
On my hike up Tajumulco, this “little by little” idea got me thinking about my dear friend and client, Robyn Youkilis, because she has really lived this.
Now 10+ years into her health coaching practice, Robyn has built something she’s really proud of but did it nice and slow (and often slower than many of her colleagues).
Over the last 6 years since we’ve been friends, we’ve seen colleagues go from a small simple business to doing multiple 6-figure launches in a year, and then totally burning out in every sense (dealing with health issues or being over their business). Exactly what I experienced on the mountain.
Pushing super hard beyond what you can sustain, and then needing to take a long break to catch your breath again.
Though Robyn may not have seen the same income as some of these other ladies, I’ve watcher her go slow, stay consistent and build something amazing + a platform I know she loves.
Today as I take in the beauty of Split and remember this simple but important lesson, I am grateful for the reminder that there is no rush to “there,” that “slow and steady wins the race,” and that the journey is really enjoyable.
Taking it slow is really enjoyable.
It allows space to be in the moment, process what you’ve accomplished, and take stock of if you’re still going in the right direction or need to re-evaluate and change course.
May you always enjoy the journey and remember that whatever pace works for you is perfect. There is no rush. There is no hurry. Life is a long time ☺️
P.S. For my lady friends, if you’re looking for support on a regular basis to maintain your YES, prioritize your self support, and connect with an awesome community, Robyn runs an awesome program Rockstar Coaching Collective that may be perfect for you. This group has moms, single career driven millennials, health coaches to be, entrepreneurs and more - the key connector is these women are in it for the long haul and know that consistent regular support makes all the difference for staying in the game and not getting burnt out. Robyn is a dear friend, client, and mentor of mine and I have personally experienced the powerful space she holds. If this resonates with you, please check out her program. Enrollment is currently closed (she opens it 2x per year) but you can find out all the info you need on this page! 💓