If you’ve read my other blog posts, you know that I love the outdoors. There’s something about being outside, whether it’s hiking, kayaking or snowshoeing, that works both my body and my mind. A recent experience with new hiking poles taught me a lesson in making better decisions.
Here’s how my new hiking poles have helped me with decisions. There is nothing new or earth-shattering about these lessons, but they’re good reminders.
1. Assumptions can hold you back.
I kept resisting hiking poles since I thought they would make my hikes less intense. In reality, they make the hikes more intense, yet more comfortable.
The reality of hiking poles:
a. They take a lot of stress off your knees and hips when going down hill. This is a good thing.
b. On flat and uphill terrain, they work your upper body so you’re getting a better workout. This is also a good thing.
Lesson learned: Testing assumptions will help you make better decisions.
2. If you really want something, you find a way to obtain it.
I’m not at all materialistic. If I was so, I’d still be working in New York, making lots of money but with no life and no friends. I choose to have a more modest life style that is filled with friendship and family. For the longest time, I couldn’t justify spending money on something I didn’t consider a necessity.
My favorite store, LLBean, was having a big sale, plus I had several reward coupons. I ended up buying a really nice pair of poles at about 1/3 of their cost. The reality is that as I grow older and my hips and knees act up, the poles will allow me to hike longer.
Lesson learned: Make a firm decision and go for it!
3. Ask a lot of questions.
Who would have thought there were so many different types of hiking poles? Trust me, there are. I had a very nice conversation with the LLBean phone rep and learned a lot about poles. I was able to make an informed decision.
Lesson learned: Asking lots of questions can give you the information you need to make a good decision.
4. If you have a tool, use it!
So I went to try out my new poles. I didn’t want to get them wet or scratched, so I didn’t use them as I was crossing a stream. End result is that I slipped on a wet rock and endedup tearing open my arm – ouch. Lesson learned here is pretty obvious – use the tools you have at your disposal!
Lesson learned: Don’t be afraid to use what’s available to you.
Have you had any experiences that have helped you with other aspects of your life?