Conquering Your Own Mountains
You may have heard of Sehera Bisnath. She's a young lady from Johannesburg who decided to climb Mount Kilimanjaro after she turned 16. The reason she climbed this mountain was to raise money and awareness for South African girls who don’t have access to sanitary towels. Although she was younger and smaller than most climbers, Sehera faced and conquered the highest mountain in Africa. This got me thinking about the high mountains young people (especially young girls) have to face every day. These are not necessarily physical mountains Choma, but are emotional and mental ones. So if you have any mountains that you’re facing, here are some ways you can start conquering them today.
Understand your mountain
Your mountain could be anything Choma. It could be your shyness, a health issue, your studies or a financial situation. The first place to start is by looking at what your mountain is and why it’s there. Think about the challenge you’re facing and what circumstances have caused this. Let’s say you’re shy. Is it because you have a low self-esteem? Is it because something happened to you many years ago that made you want to avoid people or socialising? Or if it is a health issue, is it because of your lifestyle choices or is it because of something completely out of your control (like being born with an illness)? It’s important to figure out whether what you’re facing is something you can control or something that you need to live with or work around. When you understand your challenge and where it comes from it’s easier to know how to better deal with it.
Know your strength
Regardless of what your challenge is, you need to believe in your own strength to overcome it. Think about people who climb physical mountains like Mount Everest or Kilimanjaro. No matter what their size, they have to carry the same weight and climb the same distance as everyone else. If you’re a smaller person, you have to truly believe in your own strength in order to climb this mountain with as much determination and courage as the strongest person. It’s the same with facing a challenge of your own - you shouldn't compare yourself to others and think that it will be harder for you because you come from a certain background or because you’re too young or too old. Don’t focus on what you think makes you weaker Choma, focus on everything that makes you strong. You don’t have to be physically stronger than other people, you just have to believe that you are stronger than your challenge - that is the key to overcoming it.
Break it down
If you were to go mountain climbing, you would break the climb down into different parts. There would be a starting point and a few resting points. People generally don’t climb a mountain in one go Choma, they take rests in between. The same with a challenge that you’re facing. Instead of thinking that your challenge is too big to overcome, deal with it in small parts. Do what you can do and make the changes you can make now, no matter how small. Soon you will see the difference. If you deal with your challenge bit by bit and over time, it will become smaller and you will eventually overcome it. Let’s say your challenge is passing a year at school, college or varsity. It’s a big challenge if you think about it in terms of a year, but if you think about it in smaller parts - all you need to do is start by studying, working towards your goals, passing tests and assignments. You could start by testing yourself on your own by, for example, studying a small part in your book then testing your knowledge. This will help you learn what works best for you in terms of studying and remembering your work. You will also feel more encouraged every time you pass the tests you create for yourself.
The only way to conquer a mountain, is to just start. When you know your challenge, understand how much about it you can change and control, know how to break the challenge down and believe in your strength to do it - all that’s left to do is take action. Nothing will change if you don’t start moving Choma.
Overcoming a challenge is a mental exercise and how we do it depends on what we think about it. You’re more likely to overcome something if you tell yourself that you can. Tell yourself that you are bigger, better and stronger than any challenge life gives you. You’ve lived your life this far Choma - you have survived everything life has thrown at you. If you can survive anything up until this point, you can survive anything going forward. Your belief in yourself is your biggest and best weapon. You’ve got this Choma!
Remember, you can talk to me about anything. If you or a friend need advice or help, remember that you can contact me here on Ask Choma, send me a Facebook Message, a Twitter DM, or a WhatsApp Message (071 172 3657)
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