5 Lessons From Hiking That Make You a Better Entrepreneur
The truth is, there’s always a level of uncertainty when it comes to hiking. It can be more daunting if you’re a new hiker. When you go hiking, you take a path that is less travelled. And even if you’re an avid hiker, there is a great chance that you’re navigating a new trail for the first time.
There are a lot of information, websites, and guidebooks on hiking trails like Mont Blanc, and Luberon, among others, if you’re from France. You could have studied guidebooks, researched possible safe routes, and made contacts with professionals or people who have experience on the same hiking trail.
Or you could have all your hiking equipment ready or ensure you’ve achieved a certain fitness level before hiking. This ensures your mind and body are in perfect shape before starting your hike.
Unfortunately, you are aware that you will need to let go of this control because it’s almost impossible to control nature.
If you look at this analogy, it has so many similarities with real life. Entrepreneurs have a lot to borrow from a hiking experience. If you’re a budding entrepreneur, you can learn one or two things from hiking. Here are a few lessons you can borrow from hiking to help you with entrepreneurship:
You Always Need to Be Prepared for Anything
As an entrepreneur, there are no two ways to go headfirst into uncertainty. There is no doubt that the initial phases are so confusing. Everything seems difficult and strange, and it doesn’t matter that you have a viable idea and your ability to attract investors.
But this fades away; with time, you will learn to control the overwhelming emotions and run your business more logically.
You need to be physically and mentally prepared before you set out to go for a hike. If you’ve ever been on a hike, you can relate well to this rollercoaster of emotions. The process can be daunting and strange when you decide to hike a trail. Often you’ll feel scared and have a sense of insecurity before hitting the trail.
Now imagine going for a solo hike. You’ll have to figure out many things, such as food, lodging, routes, weather, daylight, and other essentials. It even gets more complex if you go for a group hike.
This is because of your many challenges, like persuading and gathering the participants, when and where we should rest, is this route safe or not. All these uncertainties associated with group hikes are a more daunting endeavour.
When you set out to hike or start a business, you need to be ready for anything. The circumstances may vary in each case, but the physical and emotional stress is constant.
So when hiking on the Tour du Mont Blanc, you need to avoid any type of stress. If you’re trekking at the Dolomites, you need to be extra cautious with the daylight. At this trekking trail, you only have 11 to 12 hours until dusk.
Most times, self-guided tours are available, but you are still responsible for managing your time and security. When you compare it to the business side of life, you need to ensure your employees are not overworked. This ensures they enjoy working for you as you build your entrepreneurial career.
Ensure One Foot Is in Front of the Other
There is a very thin line between a successful hiker and a successful entrepreneur. They each need deliberate steps to see the results. Over time you can become a prosperous business partner through hiking.
All you need to do is endure sunshine and rain and put one foot in front of the other while trekking. Phillip Knight, the founder of Nike, has a fascinating analogy about their brand mantra.
It doesn’t matter who’s watching or how hard the trail is; you Just Do It. So think of your entrepreneurial journey as a Tour du Mont Blanc hike. However hectic or tedious it becomes, ensure you keep one foot in front of the other.
For any successful business venture, this analogy holds. Some days it will rain harder, and the sun will be hotter than others. Don’t tire. Keep moving despite the obstacles; that’s how you achieve your goals and get where you want to be.
Don’t Be Afraid of the Unknown Instead, Let It Inspire You
The beauty of hiking is traversing through places you’d never have imagined. This makes it the aspect of the activity. Imagine if you’re on a Tour du Mont Blanc self-guided and can reach the Issert in the Swiss Val Ferret.
This will be surreal since the trail offers such stunning natural scenery. Nothing can compare to that moment when you pause to appreciate the beauty of what you’re experiencing now and the miles you’ve already covered. Fortunately, the experiences of starting and running your own business have a similar effect.
When you reach out to those new clients, learn how to balance your accounting sheets, make new friends, and take on new projects. It’s such a surreal moment when you compare it with the one you were just starting.
It is ok for every step to feel a little uncertain. However, always pause along the journey, and appreciate your new surroundings and the people you’ve encountered. And at the end of the day, allow them to inspire and cheer you on as you continue your journey.
Don’t Compare Your Path With Others
You’ll meet with many different groups when you’re on your hiking escapade. You might encounter serious hikers, athletes, and families who are taking their kids for a stroll when you are out on your hike. And without a doubt, you will come across mountain bikers and trail runners.
There is no particular time when two people will follow the same road or adopt the same strategy. And the same analogy can apply to the world of entrepreneurship. You are self-sabotaging yourself when you often compare your journey to others.
It is advisable to never compare your personal accomplishment with that of others. The truth is you’re all in different stages of your journey. You may make less money than your competitors, but you have a work-life balance.
You understand your journey and goals. So maybe at this stage of your journey, you need to wear many hats instead of hiring an employee.
If you’re on the Chamonix Tour du Mont Blanc hike for a 10 or 11 days hike, you might meet with groups on a six-day trek. Your energy levels may be different since it has taken you four days to reach their starting point. So don’t beat yourself up when you see them trekking with so much energy and enthusiasm. Keep in mind that you’re the only person who truly understands your route to success.
A Strong Mindset and a Mentor Will Help You to Embrace Challenges Along the Way
Being physically fit and mentally prepared is perfect before hitting the trails. But what you should remember is that your attitude is very crucial for you to complete your hiking.
Hiking can overwhelm your body, but if you give in to your mind, you may throw in the towel very early. Naturally, you will experience fatigue, exhaustion, and weariness along the journey. The feeling may be too much that you can feel defeated, making you believe quitting is the only viable option.
But a strong mindset and a mentor are crucial for overcoming these challenges. Sometimes you may need a mentor to stay with you and help you reach your destination. And the mentor can only help you if you allow him to help you keep moving.
Along the way, you may trip or injure yourself in any manner. Or the body may be so exhausted, but you need to know that you need to get back up, not get angry, acknowledge your feelings or the pain and keep moving.
When entrepreneurs share their journey with you will know that this feeling is relatable. So what if it’s frightening? So what if you took the wrong project or didn’t anticipate the shift in the market? You must take the initial step and keep moving no matter what.
It is ok to take a rest and change strategies but keep moving. Changing your mindset is the first step to conquering weariness, defeat, and disappointments. Imagine persevering in this and accomplishing your success. Now imagine knowing that you only needed to get back up to achieve this success.
Every time someone sets up to go on a hike, they’re always clueless about what they are doing. But a combination of your experiences and conversations with like-minded people, having a mentor will help you pick up new talents along the way.
Besides, they’ll cheer you on. You’ll appreciate the power of simple words like the breath you’re almost finishing the journey. You can’t give up now; the journey you’ve covered is far more than what’s remaining, even when you’ve just covered 30 miles only.
As a business owner, this camaraderie of the community plays a significant role in your success. They make you believe the high points along the way are satisfying even though the route is far from straightforward and specific.