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We have all heard the expression “thinking outside the box.” But what does it mean and what is “the box”?   

After my second “medical evacuation” from Everest, having reached the same elevation that created problems the first time, how did I turn it all around and achieve what every doctor felt was impossible for me, with my breathing so severely affected?  I can tell  you it wasn’t by continuing to think within the confines of “the box”- the traditional way of thinking.

I still had the problem; even though I’d found ways to manage my breathing. How could I ever begin to believe that when I got to the higher elevations on Everest, I’d still be able to do the power breathing I’d need  to survive, never mind run marathons all over the world in record breaking pace and climb Kilimanjaro and Kosciusko… all in the months before leaving for Everest????  

Of course, the fact that I was a nurse made it more difficult. I knew too much. All the worse scenarios kept playing over and over again in my brain.  The panic of not being able to breathe and having to consciously “belly breathe” was taking its toll. The doctors didn’t know how to help me and after all the tests were completed, I was left with no medical hope for a solution.

To achieve all I did I had to think beyond the realm of what was possible. And believe me I had help. The “help” came from authors like Emerson, Troward, Holmes, Anderson, and many others. Don’t ever believe that thoughts are insignificant. What we routinely “allow ourselves to think about” can definitely impact our lives.