I’ve been climbing for 8 years and I know I’ve accomplished so much, but every now and then I can’t help but compare myself to other climbers. Sometimes I look around and I get a little discouraged when I see other people, who’ve been climbing for much less time than me, working on climbs that I can’t even touch.
When I think back on one of the proudest moments of my climbing career, I almost immediately remember one of my worst experiences. Both occurred at Indian Creek, Utah.
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Above photo: Approaching the crux on Cannibals, 5.12d at Donner Summit. This isn’t going to be another train harder, work out more, get stronger fingers-type article—because, while these articles are important and valuable, they’ve already been written. Instead, this is what I do mentally when I want to climb harder. Let’s face it, we all want to get better. It’s why we love climbing. There’s always a challenge, whether you’re looking to climb your first 5.10 or 5.13. In my 14+ years of climbing, these are my time-tested tips on how to push your climbing level to the next grade.
When I began training more seriously for climbing, I came across Eric Horst’s thoughts on fear of failure and fear of falling in Training for Climbing, and it changed how I saw the impact of climbing on my life. Failure is a good thing in climbing. How you learn from failure determines how you grow as a climber, and falling is a symptom of failure. Lots of women and men talk about being afraid to fall, but I’m betting there are many women like myself who are afraid to fail.