Rotterdam school of management

Erasmus University.


Part two: fight those thoughts.

Posted by in Kilimanjaro, Kilimanjaro 2014

After four days in which only minor problems occurred we got to summit night. But before explaining summit night I have to explain the hours before first. Day four started off normal. Wake up at 6.30 to be at breakfast at 7.30 all packed. After only one hour we could already see our next camp: Kibo Hut. Minor detail: although we saw the camp we still needed to walk for 4 hours. While walking you could see that the most of us were already thinking about and mentally preparing for summit night as only 12 hours later it would start. At exactly 11 pm we were woken up to have some breakfast. You don’t want to, but you eat some porridge anyway as you know you will need the energy later. At midnight we were ready, on the beat of the song “Happy” we took off to the summit. The first hour I felt strong and full of positive energy. Two hours later my feet were getting tired, my ankles started hurting from walking upwards at a steep angle all the time, and my mind started to come up with questions like: Why? Why did I want to do this? Why do I even want to reach the summit if it hurts this much? The more I started asking myself these questions the more everything started to hurt so I went back to my strategy: no thinking, one foot before the other, listening to the songs the guides were singing, and JUST WALK. Reaching Gilman’s Point felt as such a relief; we could even already see Uhuru Peak! Just 1 and a half hour away, it sounds like nothing but trust me if I say that this actually means that you have 90 minutes of struggling and battling your thoughts of stopping and returning to your bed. This is no fun! Why keep walking?!  But then there it is, Uhuru Peak. I just looked back the video of us arriving there; we are walking so slowly that we are almost going backwards, we are quiet, and everyone just follows the person in front of her. What an accomplishment, 15 women arrived at Uhuru Peak. Such a great feeling. Although getting control over your thoughts is something you have to do yourself, reaching the summit is something you do together. Giving each other heads up, sharing water to make sure everybody drinks, or even literally feeding each other to make sure the body gets enough fuel. We did this together.


About Mirte de Bakker

Hello Everybody! I am Mirte, a 25 year old master student who will soon be entering the labor market. Just before doing so I have the opportunity to join this group of women to climb the kilimanjaro. As a great fan of sports and outdoor activities this project suits me perfectly! Besides the active part of this project I believe that I will be able to learn a lot from this great group of women that already have seen so much in business. Learn & Laugh is hopefully what were are going to do on the Kilimanjaro!

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