Writer:Manley Feinberg II
There are times when desire and commitment drive you out of your comfort zone.
Manley Feinberg II thought about life’s challenges one day as he stared at a wall of rock in front of him in the Aksu Valley, one of the last frontiers of big-wall rock climbing, in the country of Kyrgyzstan in Central Asia.
Manley, a business leader, motivational speaker, and author of “Reaching Your Next Summit,” was taking on one of the greatest challenges in this adventure sport. Before he could do it, however, he had to put faith in a Russian colleague named Dima, who suffered a seizure only hours before the climb.
Dima served as Manley’s belayer, the one who uses a small metal device known as a belay to control the friction of a climber’s rope and save him if he begins to fall.
“The belay allows climbers to safely accomplish what seems impossible,” Manley says. “The same belay principle can be your secret weapon in life, where someone can help you stretch your own comfort zone and reach toward higher summits while encouraging you and saving you from the falls you will inevitably encounter.”
Manley says the business leaders he often advises and anyone else looking to accomplish lofty goals should use their own belay system and reach beyond their comfort zone. He offers these six tips for doing that:
• Get a safety system in place. Climbers, like anyone looking to accomplish big things, expect to fall on the way to reaching their summit and that’s why they use a belayer. “Before beginning the climb to your new goal, you should have processes in place to allow for your inevitable mistakes—your own personal belayer, who provides a safety system for when you fall,” Manley says.
• Be sure to have just enough rope. A belayer must feed a climber just enough rope to allow him to move in a desired direction. You’ll want partners in business, and in life, who give you enough rope to climb and room to grow.
• Avoid too much rope. If a partner gives you too much slack, when you fall, the impact will be greater for both of you.
• Don’t let your belayer hold you back. A belayer can impede your progress if you don’t have enough slack to move. Identifying a belayer who is holding you back in life and disconnecting from him or her can be one of the most courageous and productive actions you can take.
• Find a partner whose actions are immediate. When you fall, which you will if you try to accomplish goals beyond your comfort zone, your partners must be fully present for you, just as a belayer must lock off the rope right away when a climber begins to fall.
• Focus on reassurance after the fall. A good partner helps you recover and get back at your endeavor as soon as possible.
“When executed consistently, the belay lesson will have a dramatic impact on your life,” says Manley, who recommends that those looking to accomplish bigger goals should start their day with two questions: “Who do I need on belay today?” In other words, who can support me to help me accomplish my goals? And, “Who will I belay today?” What individual needs my support the most today?
About Manley Feinberg II
Manley Feinberg II (verticallessons.com) is a speaker, business leader, and author. His book is “Reaching Your Next Summit.”