The Best Path

Hey Steph!
I hope this message finds you in good health and spirits. Somehow, through a blog on the internet discussing ropes and their uses, I stumbled upon your incredible blog here (not that I’m one to believe in coincidence), and wanted to let you know how special it all is. I’m not sure where to start to be honest – perhaps it was your openness and incredible energy you project through your brief paragraph regarding your life, or the amazing insight you display on what you see as ‘important’ and ‘essential’ in your life – to be honest, I appreciate and value every piece of it, and want you to know that, so thank you :).
Your refreshing outlook on life is a breath of fresh air at a time when I need it most; coming home from overseas after many years, being released from the military, and searching for a ways and means to support and live the life I believe fit for me, in the best way possible. I’m coming to learn that in life, what is best for ‘me’ isn’t always what is best for those around us, or closest to us, and that is the fine line we tread in finding happiness (even though sometimes, it may be at the expense of others). Your story, along with my own, shows me too often that life is too short to have these debates, as necessary as they may be.
I’d love to know how you came into your profession, and what you see as the best path to getting there. I know where I am happy, and where and what I want to do – I am just lacking the ‘how’.
Thanks for taking your time off to read this message.
Looking forward to hearing back 🙂
Yours Truly,

Hi Kyle,
The one word answer for how I came into my profession is evolution. I’d like to say I had a plan and that it’s just all coming together, but that would be completely inaccurate 😀 But I think that from the very beginning of this path (over 20 years ago now) I realized that life is about priorities. If you happen to be financially independent, then boom, you’re done! Most of us aren’t, and so we have to decide what our priorities are. When I first started climbing, my top priority was climbing. Everything else was secondary. This made choices very easy: do I pay rent somewhere? No. Do I live out of my car? Yes. Sometimes sacrifices had to be made, but with an overarching priority, sacrifices are just part of the path.

At this point in my life, my top priority is freedom. All the choices I make, as well as the sacrifices, are always steered by that directive. I guess to say it another way, when you want to climb up a mountain, or fly off one, you don’t know exactly how you’re going to travel each inch of the way. You just have to know where you’re trying to go: you just have to take your heading. As long as you know where you want to go, you’ll find your way to get there. Take your heading, and go.
You will get there.

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