Growing up I was very active in the outdoors. I remember a time when I was fifteen years old being on a weeklong hike in the Olympic National Forest, which is in the western part of Washington State for those not familiar with the area. Anyway, on this particular hike, we were climbing Mount Olympus. Measuring in at 7,965', the mountain is nestled deep in the National Forest. It is actually about a twenty mile hike in from the nearest trailhead, so after you climb the mountain and then hike back out you have gone nearly fifty miles roundtrip.
The mountain itself is surrounded and covered by numerous glaciers. And I remember vividly when I was first able to see the largest, the Blue Glacier. Perched on a knoll not too far past the Glacier Meadows campsite, Mount Olympus and her glaciers presented themselves to me in all their gory. And only then did I start to realize what the actual climbing of the highest mountain on the Olympic Peninsula was actually going to entail.
Across the crevasse-riddled Blue Glacier, we made our way to the steep eastern face that led to Snow Dome. For the most part, the crevasses were easy to avoid, meaning we could find snow-bridges that allowed us to pass with ease. But that was not always the case. There were a few times we had to jump. And now just remembering back to one case in particular, my heart is beginning to race.
Our party consisted of ten people—two adults and eight kids around the same age as me. We were broken up into two groups of five, where one adult and four kids were harnessed to a single rope with carabiners.
As we traversed the glacier together, we each kept our distance from the person on either side of us. Why? Well, in case someone fell, God forbid, we would have enough space and time to respond by digging in our crampons and ice axes before the whole group slid into an abyss. But that said, we also ensured we were providing enough slack in the rope while we walked to prevent tugging.
I remember there was one particular gap in the ice that was completely unavoidable. As if on the top of a building rooftop adjacent to another, we could see where we wanted to go but well aware of the complete void before us and in our path. The divide was only about four feet across, which in terms of distance really was not that far, but still well large enough to devour you whole if you tripped or did not leap far enough.
As I approached the crevasse, the person in front of me was waiting for me to generate enough slack so he could fly through the air unrestricted. After he made his jump, it was my turn. Waiting for the person behind me to get closer, I looked down into the total darkness and thought about how deep the chasm actually went. What would happen if I fell in? Would I pull the group in too? Or would they be able to rescue me? Would I even survive?
I asked myself, "Am I leaping over death's doorstep?"
Commitment is the state or quality of being dedicated to an activity, cause, or person. A commitment obligates you to act. Commitment generates courage and puts you on the road to success.
As the late Vince Lombardi once said, "Most people fail not because of lack of desire but because of lack of commitment."
Commitments should not be taken lightly. Commitment means staying loyal to what you said you were going to do long after the mood you said it in has left you.
The author, Andy Andrews, writes, "When confronted with a challenge, the committed heart searches for a solution. The undecided heart searches for an escape."
When you make a commitment, and stay true to it, you have power.
Abraham Lincoln once said, "Commitment is what transforms a promise into reality."
If you are a student, you are committed to your learning. That diploma does not come magically. It takes time. It takes effort. And it takes your dedication to follow through.
In the workplace, your coworkers are counting on you. They put their trust in you to do your job and do your job well. And as an employee, you should be committed to deliver.
As an emerging company, we are committed to our customers and seek a lasting relationship with you. We want to hear your voice, receive your feedback, and do our best to satisfy all your needs. We are more than a shoe company—we want to be your friend. And as your friend, we will be here whenever you reach out.
We are all connected. And as a committed team, we will leap over any crevasse together.