Living in the Triangle is a continuous climb. Theoretically there is no summit; the pinnacle always just a little further ahead. However the real victory is in the journey and attaining levels along the way. There are a number of applicable metaphors for this process of living The Character Triangle and Scott Dinsmore of Reading for Your Success provides a good one. Upon completing a grueling several day climb up the 14,179 foot Mt. Shasta, Scott summarized the following key lessons for scaling life’s daily mountains:
- Pack Light. Positive thoughts, relationships and experiences are more important in helping us up than material things. Most of us die with little interest in our “stuff.” What can we shed?
- Take One Step at a Time. Break progress into small steps; 15 steps up; 15 breaths for rest. When have you and I done this recently?
- Don’t Go it Alone. We all need a support team. Name your support team.
- Listen to the Experts. Choose models and mentors and really learn from them. Who are yours?
- Slow Down. Be present …don’t try and skip steps …experience the way forward. Are we doing this now?
- Look Back to Take in the View. Wherever you are, there is value in appreciating the view and journey to the present. What have you and I learned to date?
- Save energy for the trip down. It’s not a sprint; save some “juice” for the unexpected obstacles along the way. Are we replenishing ourselves sufficiently?
- Getting to the Top is Optional; getting down mandatory. Know when to step back to go forward; it is usually not a straightforward upward climb. What is the best example of how we’ve done this?
- Failure is part of the process.
- Falling short is inevitable; dust ourselves off and keep going. Where have we felt like quitting?
At one level of thought these statements could be regarded as goofy platitudes, but at another level they could be a framework for taking personal action. And that’s what being self-accountable is – taking constructive, positive action while facing the summit.