Fear The Summit

Every time I write my own little blurb in between interviews I find myself thinking about the “other” side of success, the role of the mind!

I have a son who is going to be two in December and when it came time to choosing his name the whole topic of “does the name make the person or does the person make the name…” came up. Now, I have a friend who’s called Rocky and his brother is called Harley and, as the name might suggest, they are two big, muscular guys. One is a bodybuilder and the other is a rugby player. The thought is, did their names shape their lives or were they destined to be born with names that would perfectly suit their beings…? One would suggest we get to become who we want and the other would suggest things are pre-determined…

It may appear sometimes that a person is pre-determined to excel at certain things and that what is a struggle for one is effortless for another. What is clear in my mind is that you get to make decisions and choices as to who you want to be!

When it comes to success it seems that successful people know what they want and don’t give up until they reach their goals. Even the interviews I post here have that in common: every one made a conscientious decision to make their career in the music industry and none of them have ever given up.

If you commit yourself wholeheartedly and believe that what you are doing is the right thing, chances are it is! If you know what you want, you have a goal and are committed to obtaining it then sooner or later it happens!

My point of this little rant is that you have to commit to success, you have to go out and get it, for the most part it doesn’t come find you and it certainly doesn’t come to the people who give up easily!

Aside from making the right business decisions, crafting the best marketing campaign, let alone writing your “hit” song you have to have mentally decided to be successful in the career path you choose. You would be surprised at how many people think they want something but when it finally starts to come their way they are afraid of what they wished for. I call it fear of the summit.

Here is my story of fearing the summit. I’ll be short:)

In January 2001 I was the youngest climber on Cerro Aconcagua. It is one of the 7 summits and the highest in the world outside of Asia. I have always had a passion for mountaineering and adventure and had spent the 6 months prior to the expedition working my ass off to be in the best physical condition possible. I was living in Spain at the time and the Picos de Europa mountain range was my backyard. Everyday I would run 18km, hike up a mountain with rocks or bottles of water in my backpack, practice martial art breathing techniques, even top it off somedays with a vigorous mountain bike trail. (I will add that it was thanks to my location that I was able to get this much training in as well as make a living!). My point is I worked really hard, always focusing on the summit and imagining myself reaching it. Skip ahead to the Andes mountains in Argentina. I remember after days on the mountain finally coming in sight of the summit. The feeling that I got was of fear, I suddenly realized that I had spent so much time focusing on getting to the summit that I had never envisioned complete success… getting back down again. I had trained to get there, not to get back. The idea that what I had been dreaming of was actually becoming a reality was overwhelming and I wasn’t sure after all if I wanted it to be any more than a dream. What happened after that moment was nothing short of an adventure, and every moment I spent in the Andes has been nothing but a life learning experience. I learned that if you put one foot in front of the other, no matter how slow it can take, no matter how many times you have to stop to try and breathe, you can get to where you want to go (and back!). However, if you don’t visualize yourself reaching your goals, decide before you even begin that you won’t give up no matter what, and above all believe in what you are doing and that you are ALREADY doing it, then you won’t make it!

A bit of a spiel but my point is that mental success is just as important as the physical. In this business if you are not strong in the mind you will be weak everywhere else!

Not everybody is going to agree with what you do, however running with the herd isn’t going to make you stand out. It is the people that are successful that take the biggest risks, make the biggest statements and end up standing out above the noise. If you believe in yourself everyone else will too! And if you’re lucky the herd will follow you!

Aaron Bethune
www.playitloudmusic.com

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