Originally Posted by Philpug
If I am looking over a cornice or such, I cannot help visualizing a bad landing,
Not being able to visualize yourself sticking something (or skiing something cleanly) can definitely be cause to back off, think about it some more, and then come back when you can clearly see yourself launching, airing it out cleanly, landing, and then the nailing the runout.
Thinking cliffs here....I rarely hit something "on-sight" if its the first time. Usually I'll study it for awhile, see how the snow fills in both the takeoff and the landing, study previous skiers tracks, bombholes, and run-outs; and then visualize myself doing the same thing before hitting it.
Prior to doing that my confidence is usually pretty low. My greatest fears about these things are all the unknown variables so I just take a little time to learn about them more until I become comfortable.
(clicking picures enlarges)
Scope. Discuss. Figure out all the unkowns.
Visualize. Visualize. Visualize. In this instance I had to watch two of my friends go first to be able to say to myself, "yeah, I can definitely do that." Then I had to mark my exact takeoff on the snow and back up and make three trial runs at the lip to make sure my speed was right and that I was indeed visualizing myself correctly. I've gotten to this far on lines before and it still wasn't feeling right, so I might back off at this point too.
Then execute, keeping that perfect visual you had of yourself sticking it at the forefront.
Then it's on to the next fear to get over...
Kinda funny -- In my day job, (business development for a pharmaceutical development consultancy), I frequently find myself in high-pressure situations, giving presentations in front of large audiences with alot riding on my performance (large contracts). No matter how many times I've done it before, I often get those 'stage-fright' jitters before hand....and they're very similar to the feelings I have somethimes when standing on top of a big cliff. One of the methods I've taught myself for overcoming my irrational fear of getting up in front of that audience is to visualize myself on top of a line or cliff that I may have recently stuck. It calms me right down. Something to the effect of, "Well, if I can do that, I can do this.". And for some reason, it makes things alot easier for me. One of my favorite things about skiing are parallels and lessons you can learn to take into everyday life. Overcoming fears is just one of them.