I’ve woken this morning with slightly aching knees and that’s about it. No major issues, aches or pains and so I’m thrilled. I need to point out here there isn’t anything wrong with me, I don’t usually wake up in pain, but yesterday I walked 8 miles of the West Wales Coastal Path after lunch! That may not seem far to some of you, but little over a year ago I rarely walked further than my local coffee shop and then I considered the car. So why am I now walking 8 miles after lunch on a Sunday rather than sitting in a comfy chair with the papers? Well I’ll tell you.
Last year while speaking at a conference I listened to a great lady talk of her work to raise money for women in the poorest parts of Africa. She didn’t just want to give these ladies money, no, the project she was connected with supported the women to use the money (and we are not talking large amounts here) to start their own business. My ears pricked up, of course. I love the idea of helping other people by encouraging them and supporting them to help themselves, particularly other women. What was even better, once the first lady to receive money in a village had her business up and running, she was expected to pass the start up funding on to the next lady and the next so that more and more businesses could be developed. I loved the idea and I wanted to get involved. Just hours later there I am agreeing to walk up and down the peaks of Snowdonia to raise money for the charity. Yeah maybe that wasn’t quite what I had in mind when I said I’d like to get involved!
Now I used to be very fit. I also used to do a fair bit of walking, but 2 children, 2 businesses and a busy life later I’m approaching 41, unfit and let’s be honest more used to luxury hotels and my high heeled red shoes than a map, compass and hiking boots. But my training has started in earnest, I’ve been doing reasonably regular short walks and I’ve been going to Zumba classes once and sometimes twice a week.
But now I’m piling on the miles. Because let’s face it when you want to do something new or challenging the best thing to do is practice, get used to doing it so that when you go for that big challenge its not so difficult and with the right mind set I should be pounding up and down those peaks with an amazing group of women come September.
For many of us starting our own business is a challenge and some days we must face our fears and do something which challenges our skills set or confidence. But when we then achieve, that feeling of achievement is immense, especially when you are able to share that with others. When I coach business owners and we discuss trying something out of their comfort zones, we often talk about how they will approach it and how they will feel when they have achieved it. When they do achieve, we can celebrate together and review the achievement.
If, like me, you are facing a big challenge consider how you can break it down in to stages, like I have done with my training. Set yourself targets along the way and find someone, a coach, a friend or a mastermind group, who will hold you accountable for achieving or not attempting to achieve. Then don’t forget to celebrate when you have done it. Go on, what can you do today that you didn’t think you could?
Want to know more about the walk up and down all the peaks of Snowdonia this September that I’m involved in? Visit http://wild-woman-challenge.com/, there are still a few places left. The challenge takes place over 5 days and as part of the package, on the reflection day (day 4) I will be there running coaching sessions for any of the ladies interested. If you want to learn more about the charity I am raising money for then visit The Microloan Foundation (http://www.microloanfoundation.org.uk/MLFHome) If you want to support me in my walk and give me some encouragement and to hold me accountable I have set up a just giving page here (http://www.justgiving.com/theredshoebizwoman)