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When you need inspiration in 2023

A new year brings a lot of promise, hope, new goals, and aspirations. It is a fresh start and we all hope this year will be our year, the year we find contentment, joy, or peace. It can also bring regret for goals we did not accomplish last year, stress for what we still want to achieve, and anxiety or fear for what we may not obtain even if we set our sights on it fully.


What happens when the year begins, you are settled in to write your goals for the year, and you draw a blank? Will you be able to accomplish your goal this year? Will it take a few years or will it take even longer to achieve your goal?


We are all aware of SMART goals and the five requirements that make up the acronym:

- specific

- measurable

- achievable

- relevant and

- time-bound


However, what if there are goals that just do not fit into the SMART system? What if our lives don't allow us to create a timeframe for our goals? We have such a scenario to share with you along with some inspiration and wisdom for how to hang in there.


I spent 2009 exploring the mountains and hikes around Calgary, Alberta. There is such beautiful nature to take in for thousands of miles. It was the first time I did the Ptarmigan Cirque hike in Kananaskis. The hike is beautiful. It begins at a road called the Highwood Pass which is the highest road in all of Canada. Clocking in at 2206 meters above sea level, this road is only open to vehicles for 6 months of the year. The remainder of the year it is closed due to the treacherous conditions that winter brings this far up in Canada. There is a parking lot to get to the Cirque, you cross the highway, and then there is a bit of a strenuous short hike with an elevation gain of 300 meters in the first portion of the hike. After that, the hike is wonderful. You cross meadows, reach mountains with ridges that are so defined, and view the highway far below between mountain peaks.







A few months after my hike, I began dating the fella who would later become my husband. I longed to take him up to Ptarmigan Cirque for the hike. However, I was quite affected by medical issues and could no longer hike. Eight years passed where I struggled to walk just three blocks to have a latte. I would then have to sit for at least 30 minutes before returning home. The three blocks was all I could manage back then.


I set a goal before those eight years. I found pictures online of the scenery of Ptarmigan Cirque and posted it up. I made a goal that I would walk that hike again, and bring my husband with me. It took a total of nine years to finally accomplish that goal. It was so joyful to experience that hike again.


Usually, I have specific goals I set or specific timeframes. This goal was different. I could not predict when I would heal enough medically to hike at that level again. If I created a goal that put too much pressure on my healing journey, it could really backfire on me. I often regressed over the years when I pushed for my recovery efforts to speed up. For this hike, I had to create an open ended goal, a goal with no time frame in mind, just a feeling that once I set the intention to achieve my goal in the future it would happen when I was ready. It became a feeling, a trust in my ability to eventually return to the mountains for that hike.


I love to reflect on the photographs we have from that hike. It brings back such great memories. It also reminds me of the joy of goal setting, and absolute tenacity and belief that you can get there.


What goals did you set for 2023? Did you finish 2022 accomplishing a long term goal? Here is to 2023, I hope it is a great year for all of us! You can see the joy I have in accomplishing my goal after nine years. Hang in there, if you did not achieve your goals in 2022, you can still get there someday.


The Highwood Pass the highest paved road in Canada
A joyful return to the Highwood Pass - the highest paved road in Canada

We share our pictures from our hike through a relaxing video set to Canon in D. It is great to watch as a background for when you are studying, doing chores, or just want to relax. Feel free to pop in to to the YouTube channel for our parent company, MR JBs Inc., to enjoy it by clicking here or watch it below. All photography taken by JB Stickley - some pictures can be purchased through his store, just click on each picture individually to access his store. Pictures were taken at Ptarmigan Cirque, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada.




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