This week’s post by PPI-ME fellow LaToya Fisher is about the importance of persevering no matter what. Within PeacePlayers, it’s important for players and staff to keep pushing and overcome adversity when things get tough. The power to press on is a trait often found in great athletes and leaders.
Have you ever seen the picture of the two guys that are using a pick to dig through the dirt and one is super close to reaching the diamonds and gives up and the other one looks very determined and keeps going? Well, that’s EXACTLY how I felt last week when I was about to climb Masada.
First of all, fellow Courtney Boylan and I woke up at about 3am to get dressed and start driving. It’s pretty hard to motivate yourself at 3am to go climb a steep 450 meters (1,476 ft) above sea level. I barely liked getting up for basketball preseason workouts and now I’m voluntarily going hiking?! I just kept thinking about the awesome sunrise I would be able to see once I reached the top.
Our drive there was filled with up tempo music to get our blood pumping and wake us up. The scenery along the route was amazing and only made us more excited about what we would see at the top. Finally we arrived at the national park and paid the fee to get in. We found the signs pointing toward the Snake Path and began on our journey.
If I’m honest with myself and everyone else…I was out of breath just walking to the Snake Path and it wasn’t even THAT steep. I knew that wasn’t a good sign. As we started the climb it wasn’t too bad. I was cracking jokes and looking up at the beast of a fortress wondering how I was going to make it to the top. Eventually, not too far into the hike, the trail stopped being fun and fascinating and started to become really tiring. As I saw some people making their way back down I was envious and wanted to switch places with them so badly. As we continued to walk I got quiet, the incline became steeper, and my breathing heavier. I began to wonder if I decided to turn around…how long it would take for Courtney, who was a nice length ahead of me at this point, to notice that I started walking back down. Luckily when those thoughts started to creep in I was closer to the top than I was to the bottom. I gave myself a pep talk, sucked it up, started singing songs in my head and made it to the top not too far behind Courtney.
The sun shining over the Dead Sea was amazing and to our surprise there was an entire fortress filled with facts, original structures, and tons of history that we had no idea would be there. BONUS!!! Needless to say, I was quite happy at that point that I decided to suck it up and keep climbing because in addition to a beautiful sunrise I got a free history lesson. We stayed at the top for about an hour or so just walking through the different parts and reading about the structure. We made our way back down and drove back home and made the most amazing brunch on earth. We also basically did nothing for the rest of the day. We earned it!
Although this was just a silly climb, the experience and insight was exactly what I needed. Working for an organization like PeacePlayers you want everyone to instantly become best friends, you want all of the twinnings and activities to be perfect, and you want to make a huge impact right away. In reality, things are not always easy, people do not instantly become the best of friends, and stuff doesn’t always fall into place like it should. That’s no reason to give up and throw in the towel; that’s actually when the work begins. With consistency and perseverance, the obstacles and tough times fade and it becomes easier. So at that moment when you want to give up, press on because it usually means something greater than what you imagined is in store and closer than you think!