high altitudes of the Himalayas for generations

What the Sherpas of the Himalayas can teach you about life

Sherpas are well-known for their exceptional climbing skills, superior physical and mental strength, and exemplary endurance at high altitudes.

Every year, over 1,000 climbers come to Mount Everest to scale its peak. While these enthusiasts come from different parts of the globe, there is one thing common among all of them—Sherpas, leading their way to the top. Sherpas, a small Nepalese ethnic group, have lived in the high altitudes of the Himalayas for generations. Often called ‘superhumans’, this extraordinary group is famous for its renowned climbing skills, superior physical and mental strength, and unique endurance at high altitudes. Sherpas act as guides and porters and do everything from carrying the heavy ladders and securing the climbing routes to setting up the camps at high altitudes.

Sherpas have a lot to teach, to those who dream of climbing the Everest, and even regular folks who only have heard the brave stories of the Everest expeditions. Here are some of the life lessons Sherpas can teach you:

Don’t be a hoarder

As guides and expert mountaineers, the Sherpas suggest that their fellow climbers do not hoard anything they do not require to make the climb easier. This advice can be implemented in daily life too.

We all have a habit of hoarding—some hoard material possessions, while others emotions and scathing memories of the past. Both can slow you down in life’s long journey. Lay all your extra burdens, material and emotional possessions out in the open and decide which one do you need and why, a rule that the bestselling author and tidying expert, Marie Kondo recommends as a sure way of resettling your life.

Food is your fuel, not an indulgence

Sherpas consider food as the fuel for their body and not something that one should obsessively indulge in. They believe in maintaining their health, physical strength, and superiority through this fuel—eating protein-rich, organic, nutritious food. Most Sherpas, especially mountaineers, do not consume alcohol or smoke—they respect their body instead of abusing it with such indulgences. And their body returns the favour by helping them endure the harsh conditions of the Everest.

Be prepared for setbacks

A Sherpa is always prepared for a setback, be it from unpredictable weather, a fellow climber’s ill-health, a dangerous predator on the path, or unexpected obstacles. But what sets them apart from regular people is how well they prepare their minds to assess and react to each of these setbacks. It is something we can apply to our personal and professional lives too when we are faced with challenges and failures.

Respect the environment

Away from the city, living in the Himalayas in the midst of nature engrains deep respect in the Sherpas for the environment. Not only because their livelihood depends on it, but also because they truly believe in the balance of nature for the survival of humanity. This is something that needs to be imbibed by us all in life to let it reflect on a larger scale.

Hard work and great leadership skills

A hardworking group, Sherpas’ physiology has been the subject of many studies. But their gene mutations and biological makeup aren’t the reasons why they are such an exceptional ethnic group. Their hard work, leadership skills, awareness of their surroundings also contribute to their uniqueness.

Their hard work is evident by the ease with which they scale cliffs, carrying weight more than what an average human can in extreme conditions. Their leadership skills are worth noticing too, without which they cannot possibly help others reach the dangerous summits. They lead with responsibility and care for the safety of their fellow climbers.

Don’t take more than you can carry

Each one of us is guilty of, sometimes, carrying more than what we need, be it food, some otherworldly possession, or hoarding groceries in times of panic. But taking more than what you need means leaving less for others. A community cannot thrive with this self-centric approach. If the same attitude existed in the minds of mountaineers, would we ever have climbed Everest? That’s why Sherpas always emphasise climbers to only take what they need.


What are some life lessons that Sherpas from the Himalayas can teach people?

Sherpas can teach valuable life lessons, including not being a hoarder, viewing food as fuel, being prepared for setbacks, respecting the environment, exhibiting hard work and leadership skills, and not taking more than what you can carry.

How do Sherpas approach hoarding and how can this be applied to daily life?

Sherpas advise against hoarding unnecessary items or emotional baggage, as it can slow down life’s journey. This advice can be applied to daily life by laying out possessions and emotions, deciding what is needed and letting go of the rest.

What is Sherpas' perspective on food and how can this be beneficial in life?

Sherpas view food as fuel for their bodies, not as indulgences. They prioritize nutritious, protein-rich, and organic food. This approach to food can help maintain health and physical strength, and it is a mindset that can be adopted in daily life.

What is Sherpas' attitude towards the environment and how can this be applied to others?

Living in the Himalayas instilsa deep respect for the environment in Sherpas. They understand the balance of nature and its importance for humanity’s survival. This attitude can be adopted by others to reflect on a larger scale and promote environmental consciousness.


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