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Licensed under Creative Commons 2. Putting my learning style into practice My learning style consists of climbing until I feel stuck, asking my belayer to lower me down, analysing the climb, then climbing again and doing something different at the stuck point. I do that as many times as I need to, learning something about myself each time. Knowing this means I can tell my belayer and ask that they let me down as soon as I ask them to, rather than doubt my decision. With that sorted, we did various climbs.

One of the climbs was new to me and I got about two thirds of the way up, felt stuck, and requested to come down. We swapped places and my friend climbed it. I tried it again, moved past the previous stuck point, then requested to come down again. On my next go I went further and requested to come down about a metre or two from the top. You disengage, consciously and in control, without panic.

By listening to my psychological needs and responding to them I am only realising this now as I write , I am actually healing myself from childhood relational trauma. Are comfort zones actually comforting? Eric J. Reading that was like a breath of fresh air! Overcoming the feelings of anxiety allows us to enter the growth zone, where we can experience feelings of success as the unfamiliar becomes familiar. The edge is where the boundaries of the comfort, groan, growth, and panic zones are.

As well as noticing any feelings of anxiety, Stremba uses these questions to help people gain awareness: What is your tendency as you get closer to the edge? What happens at the edge that pulls you back to comfort or propels you into the growth zone? What helps you to move forward into the growth zone?

Where do you think your edge is? Normalise the fear feeling and what happens? My intention for the session was to notice when anxiety arose — what was I feeling and thinking? What physiological effects was I experiencing? Christine said she might try that too. I began on something super easy a 3-graded route to gauge whether there was any anxiety.

I climbed the route twice and noticed my heart was beating faster and my breath was faster, but it was akin to walking fast, rather than anxiety, so it was a good warm-up.

I felt anxious about a metre or so off the ground; my heart was beating faster and I focused on breathing all the way out. Near the top of the climb there is a ledge and, because I felt slightly off balance, I stamped my foot on it, then moved quickly through to the top. As I climbed it again, my anxiety was still there but less. I focused on tying in — a little ritual I enjoy; feeding the rope through the figure of eight feels kind of comforting, perhaps because I know, with certainty, how to do it.

I climbed the purple 4; it was easy and no anxiety. Christine refocused her mind onto reading the route and climbed it again beautifully with more flow and no foot matching. I climbed easily to the overhang, reached and grasped the first hold on the overhang, then felt confused. I was using up energy by hanging off the overhang so I asked to be lowered down.

The next time I did something different and reached the next hold; the final hold was within reach but I clung to my known position for a few seconds. I needed to let go with my right hand to reach for the final hold but that would mean a precarious moment. In between climbs we shared how we were feeling and analysed the climbs and what we might do differently.

There was empathy and a sense of acceptance and curiosity. Discussing it and then doing the same climb over and over actually dissipated it.

I realised that I can stretch my comfort zone by doing this. Something else to normalise, I guess. As I approach the edge of committing to going climbing a number of times a week, I feel nervous :. Summary Allowing myself to come down off routes when feeling overwhelm is healing and lets me learn at my own rate. And Christine learned stuff too! When did you last stretch your comfort zone?

Did you move into the growth zone or return to the comfort zone? Feel free to comment!



The personal philosophy suggested by this book ties together several concepts and tools that I have encountered other places, unified in an approach to life. While most of the concepts by themselves are hardly ground-breaking revolutions, the down-to-earth presentation applied to a I picked up this book expecting climbing technique, and was surprised to find that it is much more closely tied to mindfulness and can be applied to any situation involving risk and action--that is to say, life. While most of the concepts by themselves are hardly ground-breaking revolutions, the down-to-earth presentation applied to a specific and hazardous activity makes the material much more tangible. Before you act, each possible outcome of any risk should be clear so that you can be prepared to fully commit to both. Speak to yourself in ways that orient you towards positive action "Stay in balance" vs.

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