To My Past Self,

To My Past Self,

Deciding to apply for the Leadership in the Himalayas program was by far the best decision you could have made. The stress you felt while filling out the application was worth it. The time you spent preparing your body was worth it. The leap you took to go to India was worth it. All of it, was worth it for this program was transformational.

Big things often have small beginnings. I first came to understand this phrase through service projects I got involved in when starting college. Two of these projects were water related. As a novice, one might jump the gun and think providing an international community with clean drinking water would be a piece of cake. This is hardly ever the case. It is a combination of small efforts that make the end goal possible. I have come to realize that this can be related to leadership. One does not simply become a leader overnight. It takes a collection of mistakes and successes that allows one to become a leader. For me, one of these small steps towards becoming a leader was deciding to apply for this study program.

Another lesson I learned from this trek was the importance of perspective. To me those snow peaked mountains of the Himalayas changed what I consider to be a mountain. Those who have only been to the foothills of the Himalayas would give me a weird look if I were to call them simply hills. Whether it be school or the workplace, I will be challenged with a variety of perspectives. Some may seen crazy, but by trying to understand another’s perspective might make that crazy idea seem just a bit more doable.

Leadership is a continuous process. One way to become a better leader is by making mistakes and learning from them. Sometimes it can be embarrassing to admit failure, but it can be beneficial in the long run so that next time the same mistake is not made. Another way to become a better leader is to self evaluate every once in a while. As I grow my leadership style will change as I gain experience.

Tomorrow we leave for Delhi and I can’t help but feel bittersweet. I will miss this place, but I am excited to see what lies next in my future. When I get back I will start interning at Nucor Steel in Alabama, which will be a new experience for me. I will have the opportunity to learn more about steel and explore a new area. Hopefully I will be able to find some cool places to hike at.

<3/ The Girl in The Silly Green Hat