Friday, 14 April 2017
Challenging my hang ups
I faced a challenge today. I have a real issue when people come too close to me. I get feelings of anger and even fear in situations like crowded public transport or when queuing and people stand really close behind me. In my boating life the feelings are triggered when people moor their boats unnecessarily close to mine. I can just about cope if this is on visitors mooring as there are good reasons for mooring nose to tail. Although having said that, I do tend to avoid visitors moorings unless there is no choice. I particularly don't like mooring opposite other boats where we can see into each others homes.
Today I moored out in the countryside where there was really only space for one good sized boat as there were reeds on one side and a bend on the other. I was so happy to find it vacant and enjoyed letting Bonny run free. But this afternoon, as you can see from the photo, a boat came and moored directly behind me. They had to use four ropes as they moored on the bend and the only mooring ring they could reach was the one I was using so they were very close. It felt very intrusive and even more so when I saw a lady on the boat and smiled but just got a blank stare in return.
I took Bonny off for a walk so I could get my feelings under control. I had made a resolution before this voyage that I would try an address this issue. In the past I would have fumed for the rest of the day and so ruined the mooring for myself. I might immediately run my engine, light a smoky fire or play loud music to encourage the intruder to move on. If it's really intrusive I have been known to confront the other boater and have a blazing row!!
But I don't want to be like that anymore so I walked until I felt calm and made a plan to help me stay calm. Firstly I posted what was happening on Facebook. I know some people sneer at Facebook 'friends' but I find them really helpful and supportive. I also moved my boat just a foot or so forward, so we weren't sharing the same ring and that helped my feelings of claustrophobia. Lastly I sat outside (with a whisky!) and just looked at both the boats until I could accept there was no threat. All this helped me feel calmer and more content than ever before in this sort of situation. I've got a way to go but I'm really encouraged!