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4619 N. Ravenswood Ave., Ste 305
Chicago, IL 60640
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773.271.1990

We are a multidisciplinary innovation studio working with diverse partners to understand sustainability challenges and identify holistic, resilient solutions, and we are committed to training the next generation of leaders.

Blog

Insights, inspiration and opportunities to create a more vibrant and resilient future.

INSIGHT: The Nature of My Ambition?

Peter Nicholson

Dialogue With Mountains IV (Final)
I’m not a casual hiker. I tend to power up even fairly steep trails. I don’t know why. It’s as if every next step is a challenge to be spanned, overcome, left behind. I’ve been this way since my first backcountry trip, to Alaska, when I was 14. Having never shouldered a pack before, the first days didn’t go well. However, by the end of the eight weeks, few of the others, all older teens, could keep up with me. Improving required embracing my profound initial discontent, not giving up as I was inclined to do. I learned, adapted, grew up. Working on sustainability projects requires its own stamina, resolve and growth. I’m drawn to these undertakings because they are complex, challenging, at times even profound. We sometimes undertake journeys to discover more of our nature and capacities through the contrast with different problems, cultures or landscapes. Mountains, among other environments, will reflect and speak, if we can manage to curb our ambition long enough to pause, look, and listen as we progress determinedly among them.