Climb Every Mountain

Jun 25, 2013, 1:48 PM, Posted by Risa Lavizzo-Mourey

Risa Lavizzo-Mourey

As vacation time begins, RWJF President and CEO Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, MD, recalls the trip of a lifetime: her exhausting yet thrilling trek to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro in summer 2011.

Writing on LinkedIn as part of its Influencer Summer Guide, Dr. Lavizzo-Mourey relives the experience, made all the more memorable because she was accompanied by her daughter Rel:

"Each day, the air was thinner, the grade sharper, the camps rougher, the fatigue more severe. Finally, in parkas, gaiters, and high-tech hand gear, out-climbing clouds and glaciers and even some of our fellow trekkers, we crested the rocky summit. More moonscape than landscape, it was lonely, beautiful, terrifying, and spectacular. Someone said it was like “wing-walking on a 747.”

Most of us won't hike to the summit of Kilimanjaro this summer, but Dr. Lavizzo-Mourey says there is a lesson to be learned from her ascent to the so-called "roof of Africa." It's simply this: Climb a metaphorical mountain. Take on a challenge once in a while. Force yourself to venture outside your comfort zone. Look at the world from a different perspective. After all, she writes: "Such a challenge can be done in many ways and places, not just at the top of a mountain."

You can read the full blog post here