Today I told someone, in no uncertain terms, to leave me and my daughter alone. This all happened in front of an audience of school children, teachers and parents – and this is why I would do the same again, a million times over.
Here are my thoughts, penned this afternoon.
I just got home from my daughter’s swimming carnival and while my little man grabs a nap, I decided to capture what just happened, because it is relevant to so many of you and your children.
The someone, I told to bugger off (insert other perhaps more forceful adjective here), was Fear.
You see Fear was my best friend for the longest of times. And it has taken me so long to ditch him. He still hangs around every now and then, and sometimes I let him back in. And then I beat myself up about it, because I have done so much work over the last 4 years to break up with him.
I thought he was my best friend, my safety net and so I allowed him to be my constant companion for the first 35ish years of my life. And then, I started to realise that fear was not my friend at all, he was not my safety net – fear was in fact my worst enemy.
He was just very well hidden in disguise. A disguise reinforced by my family, my friends, my teachers….well society in general and they all did a pretty good job of reinforcing my need for that safety net.
And so, I let fear make decisions for me, you know to keep me safe and secure….right?
Safe and Secure or Restrained and Restricted?
I didn’t realise for so long that my choices not to do things, not to try new things, not to give things a go, not to put myself out there, not to take a risk, not to have a go, was all being driven by my friend in disguise – Fear.
I definitely had a few spectacular moments of silencing Fear and taking risks in those first 35 years of my life and they proved to be amongst my most life-changing decisions.
Like the time I spontaneously quit a job that I despised without having another job to go to. I did it, and my dream job, together with a $30K payrise turned up in the paper the very next day!
Like the time I listened to my gut and fearlessly opened my heart to a boy (something I had NEVER allowed myself to do before), and I ended up marrying that boy. Man, I am eternally glad I fought Fear on that one.
Like the time I enrolled in a course that I really knew nothing about, and had no clue how I would juggle study and three very small children, but did it anyway because it felt exactly the right thing to do. Well that course was Kinesiology, and my life, my family’s life and hundreds of my clients lives are changed because I told Fear where to go.
And so today, when I sat next to my little girl, surrounded by other children and watched by other parents and teachers, trying desperately for over 10 minutes to convince her to find the courage and belief in herself to go in a swimming race, it had absolutely nothing to do with the swimming race and absolutely everything to do with ensuring that Fear never finds a place in my little girls life. That she will never hold herself back from being all that she can be and living the most extraordinary of lives and achieving her dreams because of Fear.
Something changed in her today and I’m still not sure what caused it.
She swam her first freestyle race so beautifully and I was bursting with pride in her. For getting in there and giving it a go and believing in herself enough to dive into that big long pool, not sure if she would make it, not sure whether she would be first or last, not sure whether her skinny little arms and legs would pull her through the water…..yet she did it, without hesitation.
And she did it beautifully. She was so proud of herself when she got out of that pool and couldn’t wait for her next race.
Yet in the space of an hour, something shifted….and Fear got in.
When I sat with her I tried desperately to understand why she didn’t want to go back in that pool. Yet she couldn’t give me an answer.
I could have let it go. It really didn’t matter that she wasn’t going in another race, did it? She had already been in one, wasn’t that enough?
Of course it was enough but did it matter, of course it mattered. I couldn’t ignore my inner voice, that clearly told me, that this had nothing to do with swimming and everything to do with Fear.
I had no choice, but to sit with her and help her face Fear and tell it to (you know what) off!
I was aware, that to some I may have appeared the ‘pushy parent’, but because I have ditched Fear, I no longer have any regard for what others think of me. I was acting from a place of truth and if others are not comfortable with me and my truth, then that is there issue not mine! Please do not underestimate how much work it has taken for me to get to this point!
Which is exactly why, I could not let this go. It was the perfect teaching opportunity for me.
And when my beautiful daughter who has never cared what others think of her, and will always overcome her fear of trying something new, said that she didn’t want to do it because ‘I am nervous that I won’t be able to do it’, and ‘What if other people think I am weird if I can’t do it’. Well then I knew it was time to pull out all stops.
Fear was not getting into my daughter – not now. Not on my watch!
We do talk about Fear and she is familiar with the concept (the movie Inside Out is a great metaphorical reflection for children of how Fear can impact on our choices), and we also talk a lot about our inner power and our belief in self and knowing that we can achieve anything we truly want too. We are pretty awesome at rubbing our hands together as we drive into a carpark and manifesting a parking spot, and manifesting green lights when we are running late for something, thanks to our super awesome magical powers!.
And so, I explained to my daughter that it was not her talking, it was Fear talking. It was Fear that was stopping her from diving into the pool for that next race.
‘But no mummy, I just don’t want to do it’. Yeah I know, Fear is also very powerful and makes an art of making us believe that the choices we are making really are in our best interest. That it is not Fear making that choice, it is just what we want.
Been there done that!
I’ve talked myself out of athletic events, swimming events, public speaking, University degrees, relationships, jobs….you name it, I had talked myself out of it, convincing myself of all the valid reasons why I should not do something.
It’s about getting out of our own way and silencing Fear and listening to our truth, that inner voice that says, ‘No Divine one, this is what you really should do’.
And so I gently explained to my 8-year-old, that the only way to overcome Fear is to face it head on, and tell it that you are not listening, you are not going to do what it says. That instead you are going to listen to your inner voice, that tells you how powerful you are, and how wholly and completely you are able to achieve anything – and I mean anything, that you desire.
The only way to overcome Fear my sweet girl is to harness the power within you and do it. Show Fear that you are courageous, that you believe in yourself and that your inner voice is louder and more powerful than Fear will ever be.
And with that she said, ‘Ok mumma I’ll do it’.
And she did. And as I sit here now recalling her swimming in that big pool, I have tears streaming down my face.
Because in swimming that race, she sent a clear message to the Universe, to her subconscious and to her soul, that she believes in herself, that her inner self is so much more powerful than Fear, and that she doesn’t really want to be friends with Fear, because really all it does is make her feel bad and take her away from who she really is.
And really, who wants a friend like that?
To some, maybe it was just a swimming race, to me it was a life changing lesson.
Don’t get me wrong, Fear will come sniffing around again. It has a habit of doing that. But the key is every time you feel it around, to choose to be your own best friend and tell Fear to, well, you know what, off!
And the more you step outside of your comfort zone and release yourself from that safety net, the stronger the message is to the Universe to stop sending the energy of Fear your way.
As my 6-year-old daughter beautifully explained last week having recently ditched the training wheels on her bike, ‘I can’t believe it mummy, how much easier it is to ride without the training wheels. I feel, like, freer or something without them. I don’t know why I kept them for so long!’
Yes. Yes. Yes!!!
Yep another one of those moments where little water droplets fell from my eyes. And yet another wonderful discussion ensued about believing in yourself and ditching your safety net and finding your freedom.
That’s how my big girl felt when she got out of that pool for the second time today. She was so proud of herself. She had not only conquered that 50m pool, she had conquered Fear and gee it feels good.
This week, I am sending a profoundly clear message to the Universe, to my children and to my ex, Fear.
This week I am starting a woman’s dance class. Fear always told me I had a Gumby Gene and can’t dance.
This week I am joining a Business Book Club even though I am innately a very shy person and find it much harder to connect with others in a group than I do one to one. Fear always told me that I wasn’t ‘enough’ for others and that they wouldn’t like or understand me.
This week I am having a meeting with an accountant to upgrade my business accounting systems. Fear always told me that I don’t get this business stuff and that I should just play it small and safe.
This week I have launched my first Intensive 12 Week Program with four of my wonderful clients, even though it is not ‘exactly’ how I want it to be. Fear always told me to wait until everything was perfect before starting something new.
This week I have opened myself to an influx of new clients. Fear always told me that I cannot handle too many clients because it would take me away from my children and that I cannot do it all well, something will fall apart if I try and do it all.
This week I have opened myself to an abundance of money. Fear always told me that to accept money when I already have a blessed life is just greedy.
So you can see, fear can be very powerful in controlling our thoughts and behaviours and in holding us back from our own magnificent life. If and only if, you allow it to dictate to you.
So Fear, I’m done with you. It’s time to break up. It’s not you. It’s definately me. Because I now know something that you never wanted me to know, which is I am extraordinary and I am courageous and I am powerful beyond measure and I am more than capable of anything, and I mean absolutely anything, that I want to do in this life.
And another thing, I’m making sure that my children and as many other people as possible know that you’re a fraud and are nothing more than a limitation to their own magnificence.