What people mean by, “That’s too competitive.”

Someone has died climbing Mount Everest every year for the last decade.

For every four people who have tried to summit K2, one has lost their life.

Annapurna (a shorter but formidable mountain) has a whopping 41% death rate.

I will never climb these mountains. I will never dream of climbing them. Their risks hold zero draw for me. I have no desire to amass gear and experience and put my life in the hands of a snowy, airless peak.

But some people will.

Even though they know that climbers die from avalanches and altitude sickness, that they fall or disappear during storms. They go anyway because the risk is worth their dream.


Sometimes, if you begin preparing for a dream, people will say:

“That’s so competitive. Nobody makes it.”

What they probably mean: “That climb wouldn’t be worth the risk for me.”

By extension, they suggest the climb isn’t worth it for you. But only you know whether or not it is.

Most dreams are a steep grade.

There is nothing wrong with the resistance of a mountain. If it’s your mountain, if it’s the one for you to summit, then the climb will be satisfying, no matter how big a challenge it is, regardless of the competition.

And chances are (good news!), your metaphorical summit won’t be deadly.