What I’ve Learnt from Climbing Mt Everest

Photo Credit: Kamil Ghais

How many people do you know can say they’ve climbed the highest mountain in the world?

I can only name one. That’s my friend Sieve who I met in calculus during my first year of university. When we first met, we bonded over topics like going to a private school, expectations, what university life is like, relationships and the future. It’s now been almost 3 years since we’ve had a deep and meaningful chat.

What happened in between the years since we last spoke? I asked him what his friends thought and how they responded. They were stunned. No one really knew anyone that had done it before. They told him he was going to die and that together they could just travel to Finland for a ski trip.

His main drive was wanting to step out of his comfort zone, to escape the ordinary life.

But inside I was questioning, how do you get to a point where you commit to a crazy idea? No one just signs up for a challenge like this. He continues and talks about how he found his passion for hiking on a short trip on the south island of New Zealand.

So what was the most challenging part of climbing Mt Everest?

“Honestly, it was a test of character. You’re so exposed! You need mental strength to get you through. The emotional stress and physical stress is a whole other story.”

He shares with me that the 13 days of trekking was a glimpse of how to live life.

What do you think about while you’re climbing?

“You think about everything and anything. You have all the time to think about your family and how much they contribute to you. You actually critically analyse the relationships with people you have. Especially true friends — it’s the quality they bring to your life.”

What did you learn about yourself from this experience?

“It’s not just about the destination. You have to be passionate about the process and really appreciate it.”

As soon as you get to the destination, you look back and ask yourself was it worth it? Did I enjoy each step? It’s inspired me to change the way I live my life by appreciating each experience and making the best out of it.

“Go after every opportunity. Don’t hesitate and don’t hold back. “

Thank you for reading!