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4 Lessons skiing taught me about designing your next chapter

The sky was grey and it was darker than one would expect for mid-morning. The air felt heavy – almost like it was going to rain. The above zero temperature meant that what little snow that was left was heavy and slushy. The skiis pushing against the snow created a slushy sound – the kind that pulls at your knees when you turn. As I was going up and down the hill, getting my ski legs moving, I realized that there is so much to learn from skiing in designing your next chapter. Here are my recent lessons:

1. You can’t control the conditions

The weather, the snow conditions and the others on the hill are out of your control, and yet they can have a big impact on your day. Since you can’t control them, best to embrace what shows up.

2. As the conditions change you need to change your stance

When the pitch of the mountain changes, you need to change your stance. A steeper slope means leaning more downhill while a gentle slope can be tackled with a less aggressive stance. To keep your grip on ice, you need to ensure you are carving and steering – soft snow requires a looser and lighter stance.

3. There is no ultimate destination

Skiing is about getting out and enjoying the day – how much pleasure can you find? What run has the best snow? There is no where you need to get to – no final destination. It is about enjoying the moment.

4. It is more fun with others

Some enjoy getting out and skiing on their own. For me, I much prefer the company of others. They encourage me to do runs I might not do on my own, they offer great conversation and I have made some awesome friends in the process.

If you are looking at designing your next chapter, get outside enjoy your day, embrace what shows up and find some others with similar interests to enjoy it with.

Laura Macdougall is a leading authority for senior women leaders in the non-profit and healthcare sectors who are designing their next chapters in life, work and legacy. Direct message her for more information on her coaching or speaking packages.

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