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Accepting Responsibility vs. Justifying/Excusing
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iamthewallress


Nov 19, 2003, 5:07 PM
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Accepting Responsibility vs. Justifying/Excusing
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When I do a post-mortem of a climb that I've just done, I have a hard time determining whether or not the things that I think that I've learned from my performance are really just justifications of it? This is especially true of things that I determine that I'd do differently in a similar situation or times when I've decided that backing off was the "correct" action because the climbing seemed to dangerous and my likelihood of falling seemed real.

Do you do anything in particular to help keep yourself honest and your view of yourself and your performance realistic?

Melissa


lou_dale


Nov 20, 2003, 6:40 AM
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awesome question! we (dale and lou) found that video taping has been very helpful - if indeed you can get somebody to go with you to help do that. it works for everybody and the film captures the essence of truth.

if i am afraid and am getting wiggy and backing off because of that reason, it shows up. but if i have given a good effort and am lowering off because for the time being, it's not going to happen - that too is captured.

the second thing that has been very helpful and i'm so very lucky this way is through a good partnership. dale and i know each other's strengths AND weaknesses. we both are able to tell each other - stop, think, breathe and re-engage.........we know when we are being honest and when we are just not committing due to ego-oriented behavior.

video taping helps also with technique and has helped both of us improve. it gives us a different perspective on the "witness" and like i said, film captures the moments without prejudice.

after reviewing the film; dale and i also have discussions on how we felt before we engaged a route; during the climb itself; and afterwards. we do this in a very respectful and loving way as friends and as partners first, leaving the husband and wife thing removed from a critique.

dale is a SGT/Fireman/EMT........whenever they have incidents - good or bad - they have what they call critiques. everybody has input and they all listen to what the others say and take it as constructive to learn from the experiences and if something did go wrong - they can address it then and learn from that so as to not do it again.

so you have critiques from the parties who are there with you -
you have video taping to capture the moments on film for you to review -
and your partners can assist you.

if i think of anything else, i'll be sure and write - ohhhhhhh - the exercises in arno's books can help you even further - written exercises, then discuss.

what a great thing to bring up!!!!! that is one reason (among others) why i will take arno's book with us when we go climbing because after the day is done, we get the book out and do a review -

LOU


katydid


Nov 20, 2003, 12:38 PM
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My partner is very blunt. I am very blunt. We're able to take brutal honesty from each other without getting hurt feelings (which is a VERY good thing, as my partner is also my boyfriend :mrgreen:).

After a weekend of climbing (and sometimes during it), we aren't afraid to point out what each other can improve on (ranging from technique to gear placement to headgame tendencies) as well as to compliment each other. I think it's important to use "and" instead of "but" in these sorts of circumstances -- "Your body positioning was excellent through the crux, AND you need to think about getting more gear in before you get there" (assuming that's possible). "But" mitigates the accomplishment. "And" looks at the whole picture.

I think, more than anything, it's willingness to accept feedback, and being able to give and receive it constructively. "You sucked" gets no-one anywhere. Specifics are something you can be proud of and improve on.

k.


vivalargo


Nov 20, 2003, 1:56 PM
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Evaluation of your performance, in objective terms, can be helpful. Judging a person's worth, or insinuation one's worth or value relative to a performance, is a black practice for the toxic devaluation of the judgement negates whatever information is imparted. That's why, for my money, the single most important issue in all of this is to change your perspective to one where self-image and self-esteem is based on learning and understanding, as opposed to outcome and public opinion, or the injunctions of our Inner Critics.

The problem here is that to separate from public opinion and critic-driven conditioning, you have to be willing to feel your aloneness, to actually be separate from outside valuations and judgemenets, good and bad, and our entire ego structure and sense of safety is based on us reamining enmeshed with "others." It started in childhood, and don't think you're going to break this pattern overnight. It takes years to even recognize the ways we are psyshologically beholden to others for most everything we call "ours." It's a process, and the only one worth going after, but you need a warrior's spirit and dedication to hang in there with your basic separatness hits you in the guts, or when the Inner Critic kicks up when you start to separate for good.

JL


amondin


Nov 21, 2003, 9:54 PM
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It's a process, and the only one worth going after, but you need a warrior's spirit and dedication to hang in there with your basic separatness hits you in the guts, or when the Inner Critic kicks up when you start to separate for good.

JL

Separateness...Yes, our spirits are so ultimately isolated from others, aren't they. The doorway to that realization is one that I am often afraid to move thru. I'm just, just getting to the point where I have a sense that going there may be a good thing for me.

-Ken


arnoilgner


Nov 24, 2003, 11:28 AM
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Melissa,
The essence of the Accepting Responsibility process is to accept the situation as it is. Your performance was what it was. Now identify what you did that helped you perform and what you did that hindered you. These things that you idenitfy, that hindered you, are not justifications. They are things you can improve on next time you climb. A justification is a reason for not climbing better on your last effort--the one that's already finished.

Being able to be honest with yourself about your performance takes time. Honesty grows with time as ego is diminished. Be patient and be observant. Use the Witness.
arno


Partner phaedrus


Dec 14, 2003, 10:08 AM
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I had a huge discussion about this with one of my climber's at last night's comp. He flailed on a climb, mostly because he'd lost his focus. He, like me, can't be talked to when he's climbing- he gets really distracted and loses his focus when he hears, "C'mon, Mike, you can do it." He got all angry and frustrated and kept saying how it was "their fault" that he fell because "they wouldn't shut up." I reminded him of what he'd read in Rock Warrior's Way and told him he needed to take ownership of his not being able to keep his focus in spite of the distractions; that it wasn't their fault he lost it, it was his. He blew it on the next two climbs and kept going back to the one he fell on and complaining. I asked him when he was going to stop trying to do two climbs at once and decide his focus problems were his. It took him a bit longer, but he finally did it and blew through his last climbs, no problem. Made a HUGE difference in his night.


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