I know. I haven’t contributed with a post in a little over three weeks and as should be the right course of action, A. politely reminded me I need to do my fair share. I guess as much as I would not like it to be so, sometimes, I end up being too busy with the mundane practical and needed actions, such as work, and am not able to do what I actually enjoy doing, such as reading and writing. However, since I like for others to accept me as a trustworthy person who can be relied to do what they have committed to do, here I am again. As it turns out, this is a perfect opportunity to discuss trust and most importantly, what does it have to do with climbing?
A couple of weeks ago, several of my climbing friends and I spend a weekend climbing at Enchanted Rock and man, was it hot! I was thoroughly exhausted after spending hours hiking and climbing in 90-degree weather. But that’s a topic for another conversation. What I would like to focus on today is the importance of climbing in the development of trust.
I’ll be the first to admit. I am not a very trusting person, not at all actually. As such, the hardest aspect of climbing for me wasn’t the action of going 30, 50, or 100 and more feet up a wall or a rock; what turned out really difficult is to learn to trust my belayer (the person on the other side of the rope who secures the climber), the equipment, and the skills of the people who set the anchors to which I am to hang as I climb. Soon after I started climbing, I realized that a large part of what makes one an excellent climber (aside from being a little insane and not afraid of heights and falling) is the ability to trust. To trust that the belayer will do what s/he is supposed to do, to trust that the equipment is safe and reliable, and to trust that the anchors have been properly set and will hold an elephant, that is if an elephant did one day decide to climb a huge mound of granite.
Needless to say, I do not trust just anyone to be my belayer, especially when outside on a real rock. But the important thing is that I did learn to trust, which drastically reduces fear and as such, improves climbing as I am actually able to move up without freezing 30 feet up in the air and not being able to move.
Considering the many issues young adults face today and the armies of negative exposures attacking them from all sides, I would definitely recommend an activity that will add a positive flavor to their lives. I am, of course, referring to climbing. It is a great sport not only because it will allow them to spend time with others and socialize, to stay active, and to become more respectful of nature and the environment; it will also teach them to be able to develop healthy trust and not be afraid and suspicious of everything and everyone. And that’s a mighty good thing!