Climbing the Mountain

March 2nd, 2009

Sometimes it’s hard to feel like you’re making progress.  You’re doing all the right things:  Attending therapy, accepting that life has it’s ups and downs, going to your 12-step meetings, living your true identity, or a host of other self-improvement activities.  However, you’re still not where you want to be.  Life continues to feel overwhelming.  Depression, anxiety, sadness or loneliness visit often.

Maybe it’s time to look at yourself from another perspective.  Have you consider your journey towards wholeness as a hike up a steep mountain?  As you hike up the mountain, the trail goes through winding switchbacks, sweeping vistas, and passages through lovely (or maybe dark) woods.  When you’re following a switchback, you feel like you’re going nowhere.  Then, all of the sudden, you come to a beautiful vista, which makes all of the hard hiking worth it.  You leave the overlook, only to go back to the drudgery of a switchback.  Passing through some woods, you hope for a vista, but encounter yet another switchback.  You want to stop.  The steep climbing is exhausting.  And it seems like no progress is being made.

However, if you were in the valley, using binoculars to watch others hike this trail, it would be immediately evident the progress they were making.  You would see that the switchbacks, while grueling and frustrating, are necessary to reaching the summit.  That even the toughtest trails have moments of beauty.  You would see that, yes, you can do this too.

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