Falling off your perch

Falling Off Your Perch

I’ve just returned from a short break to CenterParcs.

18 months ago I was there with my family and I decided (again) to try to conquer my fear of heights.

I do this by paying stupid money to walk along thin pieces of wire 40 feet above the forest floor.

Every time I do it, I say to my family “remind me to say NO the next time I decide to say YES!”

And they do.

And I don’t (say no that is).

So up again I go. Only this time my legs don’t turn to jelly.

It’s the first time that’s (not) happened.

The reason is simple. My fear of heights seems to have gone, but instead I’m left with a feeling of 100% unfitness.

My arms are straining as I try to grab the next rope and haul myself another metre to the next (horrible) obstacle.

I don’t care that I’m looking straight down to instant death (even though I’m more than securely strapped on to a safety line).

My arms and legs are both giving way to fatigue.

My whole body is rocking and swaying as I try to keep balance.

I have no energy left but manage to pull myself the last few inches to the safety of the next treetop platform.

And then its upwards to 50 feet or so to a 350 foot zip wire.

I whooosh down with a genuine scream and I’m at the bottom.

My insides are turned inside out. I haven’t eaten anything all day (and I don’t feel like eating now either).

I tell my family. The next time I say ‘YES’ to this remind me it’s not the height any more, it’s the fatigue. It’s simply not worth it.

It takes courage to do these things. But eventually it pays off.

Was it worth it? Hell YES!

Would I do it again? Of course not.

Onwards and Upwards.

Quentin Pain

Quentin Pain started his first business, a courier company aged 23. He sold it 4 years later and used the profits to start a recording studio. A couple of albums later, he started two software companies, the last one being Accountz, which he grew from zero to 36,000 customers and which is still going strong today. His current company is ProofMEDIA, a specialist digital consulting business focusing on online growth. He's also a published author (including a Dummies title), and has won many awards including the IAB Small Business Mentor of the Year in 2013. Quentin is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

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