216. I Stopped My Hike to Call Myself Out on THIS Bad Habit

I Stopped My Hike to Call Myself Out on THIS Bad Habit

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While I was hiking a few weeks ago, I was spending the whole time being worried about snakes, tarantulas, weird bugs, and being very, very high up. This is a bad habit of mine that I fall into with my business journey too. I focus so much on my fears. I fight and resist and struggle my way through it, and then I wonder why I’m feeling tired and unhappy.

216. I Stopped My Hike to Call Myself Out on THIS Bad Habit

In this episode, you’ll hear… 

  • How hiking is like building a business
  • The power of stopping yourself mid-habit
  • Being at peace with the process

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How Hiking is like Building a Business

Hiking is the perfect analogy for building a business. Yes, you generally have the goal of reaching the top of the mountain, but really it’s all about the journey. It’s about the challenge. I’ll let you determine what the snakes and bugs represent in this analogy, but I encourage all of us to not fixate on them and to instead enjoy the hike.

The Power of Stopping Yourself Mid-Habit

While I was hiking, I literally stopped in my tracks when I realized I was engaging in one of my common bad habits. I pulled out my phone, made note of it, and then carried on in my journey. When we’re working on mindset and behavior change, we don’t need to beat ourselves up when we catch ourselves in a bad habit. Just note it, adjust, and move on.

Being at Peace with the Process

Here’s the truth: Things always get done and everything pretty much works out the best it can, right? And even if it doesn’t work out the way you want to, usually that ends up being for a good reason. So find peace in the process and try not to stress yourself out about everything.

Sometimes you can re-hike a trail, but there are a lot of things you don’t get to redo in life. Here’s a reminder to myself and all of us to enjoy the journey, not fixate on fears, and be proud of the heights we’ve achieved.

Download Episode Transcript

Sam Vander Wielen:
And I would really love to work on and get better at enjoying the things as they’re going and not getting to the end of everything and being like, man, can I do that over again so I can actually enjoy it? We don’t get to do everything over again.

So last month, I was on a hike in California in San Luis Obispo. And Ryan had gone, my husband had gone to give a talk at Cal Poly and I just attended. So I had a new place to, like, write my book, and I wanted to go and hike. So I would like, write during the day and then go for a hike and eat a lot of really good food. And I was on this hike. And I had sort of an epiphany, or at least just a realization, it’s really not an epiphany. But I had this realization and I stopped to record this audio message for you. So I want to play this real quick, and then I’ll meet you on the other side.

This is live from the M trail in San Luis Obispo, California. April 23rd, approximately 3:42 Pacific Time. That’s 6:42 eastern. I have this nasty habit every single time I hike where I want all my fears get the best of me, and kind of ruin the experience. So I’m trying not to do that on this hike. But normally, I’m like, I’m so afraid of heights, right? So I’m afraid of heights. I do everything anyway. But like, I’m afraid of heights. Anymore so, I’m terrified of snakes. Terrified. So, like every little like tree ranch that brushes my arm right now, every twig I see on the ground, everything I step on, I’m terrified that it’s a snake.

So when I go hiking, I just rush and I walk really fast and I look down. I’m only thinking about am I going to come across a snake, am I going to come across a bug that I don’t want to see? Somebody told me they were tarantulas here. And I don’t really enjoy the hike. And I just can’t help but think that it reminds me so much of like building a business and how we focus so much on either what could go wrong or what we’re afraid of, like public speaking or being on camera or asking for money, like having to really — listen to that bird — having to put ourselves out there. And it’s really scary and we really do ourselves a disservice because we don’t enjoy the hike.

So I’m going to get off my phone. I’m going to enjoy this hike. I’m going to think less about snakes and mountain lions and what else could eat me alive. Oh M, I’ll share a picture of the podcast of what I’m seeing right now, but I’m going to think less about that and more about how gorgeous this hike is, and catching my breath.

I’m at a very, very high point right now and it’s very terrifying if you look down. But, gosh, this is so similar to bullying business because I’m thinking about how the more I built my business and the bigger it’s gotten, the more afraid I am of losing it. Like I’m more afraid of losing my business now than I was when I was at the ground level. It’s a lot scarier to lose it now. And yeah, it’s not — I don’t want to just keep looking down. Like I’m looking down right now. And I’m like, oh, my gosh, that is so far from where I am right now.

I don’t need to look down. I can look up and out. I’m looking up out into the mountains all around San Luis Obispo. It’s gorgeous. And I’m really proud of the hike I just did to get to this high point. And I’m going to savor the rest of the hike too. And this isn’t the last hike. Just like it’s not going to be the last thing you’re doing your business.

So over and out from the M mountain. I think it’s called like something like the Lemonhead trail. I forget, but I’m going to share the link down below. But thanks for this little live reporting. Thanks for listening. All right. Let’s get back to the show.

So I recorded that for you in the moment because as I was hiking, I was realizing that this is something I not only do whenever I hike, but I do this about a lot of things. Like, as I’ve been writing my book over nearly the past year since my mom died, I have just like focused so much on, like getting it done, getting it done. I just have to get it done or I just have to hit this many words. And I’m somebody who kind of tortures myself throughout the process of doing things.

It’s not just the book. It’s like pretty much a lot of different things in my life and in business. I kind of torture myself and like, I don’t know, almost like fight it and resist it and struggle through it. And then I get to the end of it. And I’m like, why didn’t I enjoy that? Like, why didn’t I — why couldn’t I have just realized when I was in it that I was doing it and I was on the journey and everything was fine, right? And it always gets done and everything pretty much works out the best it can right? And even if it doesn’t work out the way you want to, usually that ends up being for reason. But I don’t know why when I’m in it, I can’t just realize that, right?

And so I thought of that when I was on this hike, which is why I recorded that message for you as I was sitting there thinking about falling off the side of the cliff and snakes and everything else, mountain lions and everything else. Turns out none of those things ended up being a problem. I saw a lot of, I don’t know what they were, lizards, iguanas. I don’t know. Something scaly and small. It scared the heck out of me. But I don’t — I’m not up on my reptiles, for a reason. That’s on purpose.

But as I was hiking, I was just like man, this is such a beautiful day and all I’m thinking about is getting to the end of it. But then I get to the end of it and I’m like., oh, that’s it, it’s over? Like I’m done? And you know what? When I got to the end of that hike, I was like, I want to go again. I couldn’t go again since we had dinner plans. And so I had to go hike all the way back to the hotel and get showered and go. But I wished I had the ability to go do it over again and actually enjoy it.

And it’s not often in life that you actually get the opportunity to go back and do things over again and enjoy it. I don’t know if I’ll ever be fortunate enough again to get another book deal. I don’t know if anybody will want to give me a book deal after this one. We’ll see. But I know, like, I would like to. And if I got to do it again, I would hope that I wouldn’t force my — I don’t know, I wouldn’t like torture myself so much throughout it as I have.

Now, sidebar, I have to be like kind to myself here that I have been through an insane amount for a normal person in a short period of time. Like losing both of my parents within a year, getting my book down the day my mom died like was not a great way to start things out. Let’s just put it that way. And so there’s been a lot like beside my book to deal with as I was trying to write my book but I still had opportunities to not make it as — I didn’t need to struggle as much as I made myself.

And I’m not sure I’m working on like, what is it about myself that I kind of need to be in that mode? I need to be like back up against the wall, pressure, last minute, forced to do this, like acting like I’m forced to do it. Being in that stress state when I don’t need to be, and I would really love to work on and get better at enjoying the things as they’re going and not getting to the end of everything and being like, man, can I do that over again so I can actually enjoy it? We don’t get to do everything over again.

So I hope you enjoyed this little hiking message. I hope you’ll respond to my e-mail this week and let me know what you thought or send me a DM on Instagram at @SamVanderWielen. I absolutely love hearing from the Terminators. My favorite people who listen to the podcast consistently. And if you’re one of them, I want to hear from you. I want to know how this resonates and if it was helpful. With that, I can’t wait to chat with you next week.

Thanks so much for listening to the On Your Terms podcast. Make sure to follow on Apple Podcast, Spotify, or wherever you like to listen to podcast. You can also check out all of our podcast episodes, show notes, links, and more at samvanderwielin.com/podcast. You can learn more about legally protecting your business and take my free legal workshop, Five Steps to Legally Protect and Grow Your Online Business at samvanderwielen.com. And to stay connected and follow along, follow me on Instagram at @SamVanderWielen and send me a DM to say hi.

Remember that although I am a attorney, I am not your attorney and I am not offering you legal advice in today’s episode. This episode and all of my episodes are informational and educational only. It is not a substitute for seeking out your own advice from your own lawyer. And please keep in mind that I can’t offer you legal advice. I don’t ever offer any legal services. But I think I offer some pretty good information.

RESOURCES:

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