I try my best to learn SOMETHING new when traveling solo and my recent hike to Sant Jeroni in Montserrat was definitely life changing. The highest peak is 1,236 m (4,055 ft), the hike is an estimated 4-5 hours going up and down, but it took me close to 7. I wanted to turn back so many times, but I happy to say I completed it. Here are fifteen life lessons learned when hiking up the mountain to Sant Jeroni.
Sometimes you have to go alone
The trip to Barcelona, the journey from Barcelona to Montserrat and the hike was done on my own. I initially wanted to take a tour, but my indecisiveness caused me to miss out on the one provided by my hotel. With some tips from the concierge and my own research I was able to find my way (and save money). I initially wanted to go to the top to get nice aerial views but it became more motivational after a while.
There will be obstacles
From narrow paths, rocks, stairs going up and down, to me not wearing the proper shoes, many things were in the way at times, but it didn’t stop me from going forward. Similarly to life’s journey, you should always find your way through any obstacle.
Find a source of encouragement
With no one there to cheer me on, I had to find a source of encouragement to keep going. I spoke affirmations, sang encouraging songs and pushed myself to the very end.
You’ll encounter different people along the way
On the hiking trail to Sant Jeroni, there were many men, women and children of all ages and backgrounds along the way. Some were nice while others just passed me by. It didn’t affect my end result in any way.
Don’t compare yourself to others
While going up I became discouraged when people that started after me got ahead before me. I immediately checked myself because I realized everyone’s journey through the hike was for different reasons. There were 15-20 minute trails, the full hike to the top and others were there for rock climbing or have picnic lunches. Comparison is really the thief of joy. Appreciate each step you take in your own walk.
Rest when needed
I barely work out and became breathless often. Had I not rested and recharged, I could’ve passed out or something much worst. Don’t believe the “sleep when you die” hype. Everyone needs to take a break every once in a while.
Follow helpful signs
Along the trail there were helpful signs allowing me to estimate the amount of time left going up and down. It’s your choice at the end of the day to follow the sign or get lost making the journey a little longer than it should.