Saturday, November 13, 2010

Lust of Result

Students will understand how in meditation the mind which attaches itself to hope of success is just as bound as if it were to attach itself to some base material idea. It is a bond and the aim is freedom.
Friday's flight was frustrating. The breakthrough I had Wednesday did manifest itself... as far as not chasing the air speed indicator was concerned. So the next problem was trim. Again. *$#&(&@! Nothing I did seemed right. And I did something very dangerous too. It was instinctive and my CFI corrected it before it was very bad. But that was scary. I botched a landing, bounced actually. I did the typical student thing, unconsciously pushed the nose forward to "get back to the ground". He grabbed the controls, brought the plane safely to the ground and spent the taxi back explaining how dangerous that was. Ultimately, Friday was the most frustrating flight I've flown. Coming in on short final, 20 degrees of flaps, "trim" he said. I trimmed, the wrong way. *grrrrr* At one point my CFI pointed out "this should be fun" as we went around AGAIN in the pattern, 9 times in 1.1 hours. I wanted to smack him.

After the flight, debrief. My CFI is very good, he makes sure to point out the good as well as the bad. I asked what I should think about or study while I'm out of town for my next trip. He said, "nothing". He said I should take a vacation from focusing on this stuff. And, of course, he's right.
For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result, is every way perfect.
I think I got myself into a mental trap this week. Before I left for my long trip, my CFI said I could possibly solo in 5 hours or so, based on my progress so far. I think I let that go to my head. All of the sudden I wanted to "master" the pattern, I got focused on a goal. Target fixation. Getthereitis. Whatever you want to call it. Before then I was simply really enjoying learning and flying. Add to that my "breakthrough" Wednesday and I was doomed.

A similar thing happened to me in my running a year ago. I had been training for 3 years, then had some set backs, life, medical issues, family matters and work made it impossible for me to maintain a regular running schedule. I was watching my friends who were much slower than me the year before disappear in the distance ahead of me on our runs. I got more and more frustrated. I wanted to get faster and all I did was get slower. Finally, I gave up the "get faster" goal and focused on having fun. I left my watch at home and only looked at my Garmin when I wanted to know how far I ran (not how fast). I started a diet with a long term goal. I also started flying lessons (which I never would have done before because it does take away from my running time). I lost 30 lbs and went to run my first marathon of the year and ended up running my fastest time ever. My running now has much less pressure and much more fun. Looks like this is what I need to do for my flying.

Friday, after the flight, my husband and I were able to laugh about my struggles (my hubby has about 150 hours flying and learned under the same CFI). Even with the difficulties, I wanted nothing more than to get back up in the air ASAP.. just to fly.

Today I feel freer. I still have the intense desire to fly, but I know my next flight will be more fun. I will forget about soloing, that will come. (Though I better get my medical soon.) I will make a conscious effort to truly be present in the joy of flight. Focus on joy won't be too hard when I'm not worrying about a goal. The goal will come, I just have to let it. Not force it.

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