How about a contest? - couple people all flip over at the same time - first one to roll up has to buy a round. That'll keep you under the water longer! I'm a big fan of eyes open and watching that paddle blade the entire way through. If you watch EJ's roll video he preaches a "head down and back
" idea that also helps - if you're head is back pretty far you can still get up with out having it on your shoulder.
I also really liked this advice by "MandyK" on another thread - (here: Nervous Beginner
1. Practice on dry land (see Mandy's dry land kayak Eskimo rolling tips (Creative Pursuits LLC)
). Its a great way to develop muscle memory. And you can do it in the living room or on the back lawn without having to swim.
2. Sometimes it is useful to remember that once you have been frightened by something, you are unlikely to "get over it", more likely, with time and practice, you will learn to use the intellectual part of your brain to override the instantaneous panic and take the preferred action - expecting that you will not be uncomfortable/scared/nervous just sets you up to think that you are not going to cope or are not coping. Practice a useful pattern of thoughts, for example, when you flip over, tuck up and set up as you think "I recognize that I don't like being upside down, but I have the skills to self-rescue, if I take a couple of extra seconds to set up properly, check my paddle angle and keep my head down, and use my hips, I'll be out of here in a jiffy - and if it doesn't work the first time, I'll get a breath and try again, I could keep doing that all day ..."
To my thinking - if "I know how to roll" is running through your head when your face hits the water in stead of "oh sh!t" - you're a lot more likely to roll that boat back up!