Life Lessons From Rock Climbing 1

9 03 2014

I’ve recently had more time to rock climb and have been getting pretty good (V2/V3 bouldering level).  The more I learn the more I see lessons in rock climbing that can be applied in other aspects of my life and I wanted to share those with you.  The first lesson I’ve taken from rock climbing:

Abuse You Advantages

Don’t feel guilty that you have an advantage; instead, really milk the most you can get out of it and use it to move up 2x or 3x faster if possible.  My climbing buddy, Crafty, and I are both relatively tall, and when we first started climbing we felt like it was cheating to use our height to avoid more technical solutions and just power through.  After climbing a while I realized: that’s idiotic.  Instead, we shouldn’t waste time thinking about how a shorter climber would solve a problem and we should use our height advantage.  The result was less time wasted thinking and more time tackling more difficult climbs.

As a climbing example, I recently solved a V1 (beginner level, but usually only accessible after a few weeks of climbing) in which I was on my tippy toes and barely snagged the last hold with the tips of my fingers. If I was one centimeter shorter I would have had to come up with a different solution. Since I’m 5’10”, which is the average height for a male American, that means 50% of men and a lot more than 50% of women would need to find a different solution.  But what do I care, I solved it, on to the next challenge!

So how can we apply this lesson outside of rock climbing? The best example I could think of was job hunting. I got my job through an interview secured by my friend. I had been looking on job sites and such for about a year with a high GPA, work experience, and no luck; a few facebook messages later and I had an interview.  Two weeks later I had a job paying above average with bonuses for travel.  Some people may think it’s cheating, but who cares what they think? Be smart and abuse your advantages!


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