Will I Ever Feel Comfortable In Front of a Camera?

I'm surprised how many people get the numbers wrong on this… including me.

Climbing, like cameras, obsessed me. 

My five-month-old climbing career to this point had been under the security of having a rope always supporting me from above in case I fell. This is called top-roping and limits you to climbing on cliffs of twenty metres height. The next step is lead climbing and mastering its basics means the world is now your vertical oyster. 

The trade-off is falling, and while relatively safe, it makes lead climbing about a hundred times scarier. 

With confidence and bravado masking the fact I was shit scared I began the vertical moves up a beginner-level climb named Iron Butterfly. 

I’ll save you the technical details here, safe to say I didn’t really know what I was doing.  

A slight bulge in the rock marked the 40-foot mark and the point where I lost my nerve to continue. 

With knees shaking wildly my free hand jammed a wonderful piece of equipment called a ‘Friend’ into a crack at my waist level. I managed to clip my rope to the ‘Friend’ and I called out ‘resting’ to Bruce, my climbing partner below. 

Happy to relieve the weight from my arms I relaxed my panicked grip on the rock and let the rope take my weight. My trusty new ‘Friend’ would hold me secure. 

It didn’t. 

Blurring streaks of lichen on the rock gave way to an eyeful of blue sky followed by a confusion of leaves and tree branches. 

Exactly what was happening I wasn’t sure but I knew it was bad. 

I was falling, rotating head down to spear into the ground.

20 feet of rope below me to the next anchor point. I fall 20 feet to that plus another 20 feet until the rope takes up. Should be ok.

Two large rocks footed the cliff: One the size of a TV set, the other the size of a microwave oven, spanning them, a head size gap. 

My head speared into the hole and my shoulders took all the impact. 

Painlessly I blacked out and, I think, came to seconds later. 

Just like in the cartoons, green stars fizzed and swirled around in my head. 

I was sitting on an angled slope with warm blood running down my face. 

My shoulder was dislocated. My collar bone detached.

But I was alright, enough to realise the simple math of my mistake.

I forgot to factor in the stretch in the rope.

When it comes to showing up on video many have the numbers all wrong too.

Most people imagine it takes hundreds of videos to get good at video.

It used to. Not now.

Here are the new video numbers.

Most people I help show up on video take about ten videos.

Not 1

Not 100

It’s about 10.

Most people includes me. I was surprised at how quickly I settled into being in front of the lens.

Would you like this to be you?

Send me a PM if you want to talk it through.

 

#video #presentingskills #confidence

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