How a week’s skiing took me back to basics.
When things are difficult and beyond our control whether it is taking part in sport or at work sometimes just going back to basics can help to re-focus the mind and tweak bad habits, giving renewed confidence and enhancing performance.
Last week I was on the ski slopes and yes I had a fantastic time. I had good equipment and the great company of my friends, however I couldn’t control the weather!
The first day it snowed creating a white out and bad visibility. I have skied for many years but as I came off the first lift I felt vulnerable and unsteady not knowing where I was or which direction I should be going, the snow was falling thick and fast, however one thing for sure was the only way was down and I knew if I could get below the cloud line I would be able to see. This was a challenge, but listening to voices around me I realised I was not alone so taking into consideration everyone’s abilities we formed a snake and keeping close enough so that we could glimpse the next persons brightly coloured jacket we collectively skied down until we came out of the cloud. Very satisfying team work, at the same time as drawing on every bit of knowledge of these conditions I had ever been taught.
The second day the weather was cloudy producing a flat light which created a different problem as the definition of the snow was difficult to read and the piste was thick and lumpy. I had to think back to my ski school days and draw on the basics I had been taught. So keeping the skis running down the mountain , picking my path and planting my pole decisively to make my turn, this gave me rhythm and style and saved me from falling into a heap! So for two days running I had drawn on my ski school knowledge to help me overcome difficult conditions, not wavering from my decisions and using basic skills to prevent me from falling.
I am pleased to say that the rest of the week we had blue skies and perfect snow. My confidence returned and I skied naturally , however the previous days had reminded me about revisiting some of my basic ski school techniques and now that the sun was shining I took the opportunity to practice some of these, to eradicate some of the bad habits I had fallen into, so increasing my performance with great results!
Sometimes things are outside of our control, they knock our confidence and performance, but by revisiting basic techniques or learning skills can help to refocus the mind, lift the fog, remove bad habits and allow us to perform to our maximum ability.