Sunday, February 21, 2016

Overcoming Your Fears

After reading this so many times to edit, I just have to say, excuse any grammar mistakes that may be lurking because I'm sure there are plenty.
Many of you may know that in November of 2014 I broke my right collar bone for the second time in the exact same spot, which according to the doctor is very rare. To make things worse, this happened right before finals week. The second time around, I broke it doing a handstand on a spring floor. I jumped too hard into it and my body didn't know how to compensate so my legs went opposite ways and something crazy happened and I ended up on the ground in extreme pain. I know I looked like an idiot, and it hurt like heck. It was definitely a humbling moment. If you don't know what having a broken collar bone feels like, it's absolutely terrible. There is nothing the doctor can do but give you pain medicine and you just have to wait for it to heal. You can't move your entire arm to do anything for yourself and you have to wear a sling. I couldn't wash my own hair, I couldn't make food, I couldn't shave my armpit (gross I know TMI) I couldn't do much of anything for 2-3 weeks. After that you get a little more movement, but it still hurts to do everything. I waited 3 long months for an (almost) full recovery. I couldn't wait to start doing headstands, handstands, and acroyoga again. Around this time (January 2015), I started hanging out with my current boyfriend. He became my acro partner, and my biggest motivator. It got easier and easier with him as my base and that trust started to form between us.  I started doing a few things on my own like headstands and crow pose. When it came time to do handstands it took everything in me to put my hands down on the ground and kick my legs up (even with him spotting me). Once I finally worked up the courage to do that, I would not let him move. I would NOT do a handstand without someone standing behind me or doing it in front of a wall. This lasted until just recently. This is so crazy considering I can do a full back bend, so if I go over I can easily come out of it, but that's the thing; fear paralyzes. Every time I get upside down with my hands on the ground, I can feel fear take over and I swear my body forgets how to work... I know in my mind everything I should be doing with my body, but I can't get the two to connect. There have been SO many instances where I wanted to give up and stop trying. Sometimes I still feel like I'll never be able to stop being scared of kicking up too hard, so how was I ever going to get in the right position? I know this doesn't seem like a big deal, but this has been one of the most frustrating processes I have ever been through. I know I can't let the frustration stop me from getting better. I started with practicing falling out whether it was kicking up too hard and landing in a back bend or falling out sideways both of which I have no problems with. Then, I worked on getting my body stacked in the right position with the help of the wall, which is still a slight struggle. I finally am to the point where I can feel when my body is in the right position. Still to this day, when I think about doing handstands I can feel the fear come over me, but it is something I just have to push away and trust that my body can hold itself in the right position. I am thankful for this as a learning process to help me overcome this fear and not only this but other fears. I will do freestanding handstands now, even though they don't look good yet, and my technique is still just awful, but I will not let fear stop my practice and hinder me from reaching one of my goals.

Obviously this is just a small story with a bigger meaning, not just about doing handstands. There are always going to be obstacles in life whether big or small. This is just one way I have overcome fear and there are many ways that fear takes ahold of us every day. Fear can show itself in many different forms (worry, stress, being scared in general, etc.), and it can hinder you from achieving great things. Fear is one of the biggest obstacles to overcome, because it can take over in so many areas. Fear can be so strong that it hinders you from getting to your destiny.

When I feel the presence of fear in any form these are some of my favorite verses to help me overcome:

Do not fear for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.       
Isaiah 41:10&13

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.
2 Timothy 1:7

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. 
1 John 4:18
I memorized this one as a little girl, when I was still afraid to sleep by myself I would recite this over and over until I fell asleep.

I hope everyone has a great week! Remember these verses when you feel fear come over you and know that YOU ARE AN OVERCOMER.