Thank you for sharing your breakthrough, and a bit on what led to it, with us. I have no doubt there are more than a few who will read it, who occasionally experience some of the self-doubt you felt along the way. Your post will surely give them more confidence and perhaps even a sense of direction.
As you may have read in some blog or forum posts, a key attribute of those who eventually rise to the level of Mastery has been to adopt the attitude of Loving the Plateau when they encounter those inevitable periods of progress that slows or seems to stop. What helps them do so is the insight that there are periods where incremental change--at the neural level, below the threshold of our awareness--continues to accumulate day by day if you stay constant with purposeful practice.
Did you learn anything of value when you encountered plateaux?
I smiled when I read of how you found the side-to-side pendulum sensation to be pleasant. That reflects working with, not against, wave action.
Head Coach & Chief Executive Optimist
May your laps be as happy as mine.
My TI Story