A Matter of Confidence


Have you ever had that voice screaming at you in the back of your mind “You’re just not going to make it”

Mine voice comes from a cartoon character with a grey face, weird hair, and rabbit red eyeballs.

If my eyes were red and my skin grey I'd scream too, not to mention that hair!

Hey everyone gets bored at work sometimes and I never proclaimed myself to be Picasso.

Some people have little voices that whisper to them, mine he is rather manic and likes to spout-off every-once-and-awhile. He’s not the voice of humility where he tries to keep me from being cocky. No he’s the voice of imminent failure determined to keep me under his boot.

I had a great conversation about confidence with a good friend the other day. He was telling me the difference between him and another family member. He said that when he gets into a situation or a game he expects to come out on top, to win, and to him there really isn’t another alternative.

I thought to myself for a second, “Holy buckets. I wonder how that feels?”

I’m the type of person that when faced with a challenge I want to overcome I settle for a mediocre outcome.

“I hope I don’t hurt myself”, “If I make it half way up that’s a moral victory”, “Hey I still have all my body parts, at least 75% of my blood still in my body, and three-out-of-four limbs still work….chalk up a victory for me!”

I think the only thing I haven’t settled for was my wife, she’s way out of my league and I hope she doesn’t ever figure that out!

My wife often gets on me about my self-deprecating humor to which I reply “it works wonders on opposite day.”

So much of our success in life can be derived from the confidence and mental attitude we bring to the table, or the trail, or the crag, or the river, or our computer, desk, child, spouse, yo-yo, or the G.I. Joe with the kung-fu grip. (I am a little unsure about the last few or where I was trying to go with this but please bear with me I promise it’ll get better)

Several years ago I watched the video for The Secret. Now I’m not endorsing it, but the some of the principles I do agree with. The adage goes, ‘If you look good, you feel good’ to which I whole heartily agree but it is only half the battle here. How you feel about how comfortable and stylish your clothes are is very important. Don’t believe me, hike a 14er in Colorado dressed in cotton on a cold and wet day and then come and tell me how much you enjoyed the journey?

How you view your abilities and the complexity of a challenge can often determine how you come out of it in the end. Not because you’ve willed something into place, but you are less likely to quit and more likely to concentrate and give it everything you have. You’re mind is sharper as you are more focused letting to see holds and try movements you may have never thought of, or hike faster and longer because in your mind you know you can finish what you started.

Personally I’m struggling with a matter of confidence myself. Not about climbing (which I am sure will come about when my shoulder heals) but about a very special project that I’ve been mulling in my head and placing down on spreadsheets for the past two months.

‘Will it work?” ‘Why would it work”, “Shouldn’t I be devoting my time toward something else that might be more useful”, “Maybe I should stay in my own lane and comfort zone”

A wise man once told me that “Failure often comes dressed up in wisdom clothing”, he also told me that “My world is framed by the words of my mouth”.

So today I ask you readers, what world is being framed by your words? What matters of confidence are you wrestling with? Can you slay that dragon, or will it eat you alive?

Until next time……Adventure On!

Categories: Backpacking, Climbing, Hiking, Insight, Outdoor Recreation, Skiing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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