Thursday, March 6, 2014

Mt. Everest is a Warm-Up

The number of people that are astounded I am about to go climb the world's highest peak, ideally without bottled oxygen, just keeps growing. Every time someone is amazed, I lose a little hope in the imagination of humans. About 180 people have climbed Mt. Everest without use supplemental oxygen. It's been done. It's where the sub 4 minute mile was in the 1970s, or a 2:06:38 marathon is today, or being CEO of a Fortune 25 company. Sure it is unique, I have never done it, it will be hard, but there is a somewhat established process for doing it.

Yes, if this mountain is all that I am ever able to do, it will still be a great experience. Yes, this is the tallest mountain on the planet, when it comes to altitude, there is no higher, it is an end in that respect. Yet, I am 27, there are dozens of things I can imagine that have not even been attempted.

I do not know why I think this way. I feel that if I do not push the limits of what has been done I am wasting my talents. Yes, this is a risk, financially, physically, mentally, etc., but I fully expect to take greater risks in the future in several of those areas. I imagine projects where the risks are not known, because no one has ever attempted them. What was the risk of Apollo 1? What was the risk of the Steve Wozniak quiting his job to work on Apple? Where would we be if these things had not happened?

There is a list, of possible projects I am interested in after Mt. Everest. I don't like lists because they have a tendency to get people killed trying to finish the list. That being said, I see many opportunities to build on the Everest experience starting in June this year. We can learn persistence, patience, resource management, development, through seemingly unrelated activites. Mt. Everest is a long term goal involving a wide skill set. Every long term goal involves a wide skill set.

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