During our lesson debrief, I freely admitted that the first lot of instrument work was truly appalling. Bob didn’t disagree; it was almost worth screwing up the instrument work to see Bob try and phrase his questions in a delicate way, when really all he wanted to ask was “what the hell was going through your mind, why were you doing that?”The first thing that came out of my mind was “because I’m an idiot.”
I tried to explain “I have spatial awareness problems, I’d managed to persuade myself that you turn the opposite way to the heading director. I don’t know why.”We both chalked it up to a mental blip, the other 0.5 or so of my instrument work was much better. I forced myself to scan my instruments, not fixating on them. I accepted the fact that anything else going on was not my concern, I blocked out the radio and any chatter going on around me. Mentally as well as physically I was wearing blinkers, ignoring Bob as he spoke words of encouragement. My entire world became the instruments in front of me, my only speech parroting back the numbers. It was just like I was back at the very start of my training again, unable to focus on anything else other than the very fundamentals.
Once I got my head into it I coped much better but it takes a reasonable amount of mental energy just to flight straight and level. The good news is though, after today’s flight I have exactly half the instrument time I need for my PPL.