How to take charge of fear.

20 Dec 2019

This image came up in a memory today.
I have only rock climbed about 6 or 7 times in my life. 
Every time I do, it puts a fear in me that makes me weak at the knees and I actually feel quite dizzy. In rock climbing terms “Gripped” is to be paralysed by fear or confusion.  This is it, gripped. I have felt gripped until…

Since training as an NLP Coach, I have the tools and processes to enable me to overcome the fear of not doing it at all and to get onto the rock.  The technique teaches you to take your mind to 15 minutes after the event (which in this case would be getting off the rock), what will you see, hear and feel to allow you to know you have accomplished the activity successfully.  That way your mind thinks it has already achieved it, therefore not limiting you to thinking something bad will happen or that you cannot. You see, the mind doesn’t know what is real or what is imagined. Pretty cool, huh? This awesome technique has kind of given me a “ golden ticket” to climb rock faces, win boxing tournaments, speak on international platforms, jump out of planes… and it hasn’t allowed fear to stand in the way!
As I look at this picture, that was taken on the vertebrae / spinal route in a cave in Cambodia in 2017, a few thoughts come to mind.
I have no technique or skill to climb this wall.  This is very clear with the position I am in if you are an experienced climber... however I continue to move forward.
I search for the next crevice to clutch on to, to wrap my fingers around and to move forward. A strength comes from what I can only describe at the time, as my fingertips!
When I was making my way up this journey, I searched for my next approach, I weighed up the distance, I weighed up the chance of making it, I weighed up the safety of the next move, and I pushed and reached to get there. How can I actually be doing this, in split seconds, in a sport which I clearly know little about?!
As my body shakes with uncertainty of not knowing the route ahead, of unknown territory, I continue to breathe deeply, I breathe through the motions.

What are we fearful of? Are we fearful of the height or the distance? Are we fearful of the fall or the flight? Are we fearful due to someone else's experiences? Are we fearful of the view that we might see from the destination or what we see along the way?

A lot of people say don't look back.  However how will you see how far you have come? How will you smile and congratulate yourself internally if you don’t take the time to look back and reflect.

As much as I felt so alone on that rock face because no one was showing me the way and I couldn’t physically see anyone, I felt the support from the harness and ropes. I was aware of the instructors at the top and bottom of this face. As much as I felt like I was a scared spider shaking on its web, I was surrounded by people who were supporting this venture.

As I was going through each of the above, I realised a few pretty strong life lessons coming through...

Even if you don’t have the skill required to move forward, you must still try. You do not need to have been taught a master technique in order to move in the direction of life that you wish. Movement is key. Just keep moving.
Strength will come from deep within you, when you are on a mission to get to the next chapter of your life. It is mother nature, it is how we are wired. You will gain that extra boost from places deep within you, that you never knew possible. You just need to search, reach and hold onto that goal. You need to want it.  Once you feel this unknown strength burst through, acknowledge this magic and know that you have this inside of you right now and for your future. 
You don’t always need to sit down and have a full critical path meeting for some of the biggest and boldest decisions of your life. You can weigh up some of the key factors, use your gut intuition and succeed just as beautifully, as if you had a fully pre-mapped route and vision.
Never forget your breath, especially, most definitely remember it in tough times. Your breath centres you, it grows you, it realigns you.  Deep belly breaths are one of the most underrated human techniques. Close your eyes and as you focus on your breath, feel it flow in through your nostrils and feel it flow back through your nostrils on the exhale. Feel the waves of life flow. It is truly all you have right now. And smile. This will save you in moments of fear through life.

When you say you are fearful of something, take a minute to reflect on that fear. It may not even be yours. I realised that I didn’t even know why I was fearful of rock climbing. I turned this fear into an opportunity, a strength. The tool of REFRAME is a pretty powerful flow.
No matter what others say, always take the time to stop, reflect, check out your mini wins, your big wins, your breakthrough moments, your low moments, your questioning moments. Look back, look forward, look up, look down – get comfortable from each view point.  Gain awareness of everything around you. Suddenly gratitude will seep out your pores. Be grateful for all these lessons, they create growth. Again another powerful flow.
When you feel alone in life, stop and let your being come into a state of peace and calm. Let your thoughts flow gently. Even if you cannot see anyone at that moment in your life, it doesn't mean they are not there. There are people all around you in many forms, in many places, in front of you and behind you. Choose to see them, and they are truly there. Know in your heart that they are there, and you will suddenly feel the support.

Who would have thought, so many life lessons learned from a memory of me climbing a rock face in the beautiful land of Cambodia.  Look at this image. Where there is darkness, there flows light, your path will be rugged and rough, and other parts of it smooth. When you feel ‘gripped’ with life, come back to this piece and know that there are lessons everywhere it’s just how we wish to interpret them, in the words of my dear friend Nikorn, “just breathe and believe”.
Hugs & Happiness,
Elli xxx