Drowning Myself To Overcome Fear
When I was younger, for one reason or another, I couldn’t learn how to swim as fast as other children. Like many, I wasn’t able to stay afloat or successfully hold my breath underwater because I feared I would drown.
This fear of drowning captivated my every move and my every thought. It kept me from floating, it kept me from breathing properly, and it paralyzed my focus on going under.
There were four routes my parents could have chosen:
a) Enroll me in lessons at the local swimming pool.
b) Stay patient and continue to work with me for several more weeks.
c) Give up and accept that I would never learn how to swim.
d) Throw me in the water and hope I’ll learn to move my arms.
You guessed it. My parents took option D and I distinctly remember my father picking me up and throwing me in the middle of my neighbor’s pool completely against my will.
It worked, and it worked really well. Apparently, when you’re drowning you can overcome your fear of the water and somehow all the swimming lessons kick in.
The way my parents helped me overcome this problem may not have been the most ideal or the safest solution at the time, but it worked.
Throughout my life, there have been several instances where I have held back on a project because of my fear of failure. I held back because I didn’t want to embarrass myself or face others if my project or plan had failed, and this particular dilemma wasn’t restricted to myself. I know of several people who function in the exact same way and you may very well be one of them.
The issue here isn’t about erasing fear, because we all know that it is a healthy and natural emotion. Rather the issue is how to balance fear and subdue the hesitation to keep the issue in perspective.
If I have done proper research and consulted the right people about a pending project, I feel the best way to overcome my fear and hesitation is to throw myself in the mix and launch right away. To this day, my last swimming lesson continues to be the push I need to overcome my personal hurdles.
I won’t say that it has led me to success 100% of the time, but it has always given me the momentum I need to continue moving forward.
Is their a magic pill? I’ve read several stories on fear.less, a popular blog about overcoming fear, and its helped to convince me of the absence of one singular method to overcome fear. Everyone has their own unique way of subduing their anxieties and taking that next step. My swimming lesson worked for me, but for others it could spell disaster.
I’d love to learn your methods of overcoming fear so I can compile a list for a future post to help others. Using a single or a combination of methods to gain the energy needed to jump that hurdle may very well serve as the impetus for change in ourselves and in others.
So, my question to you is this: How do YOU overcome your fears?