For the last several weeks I have had the desire to write a blog about living in a society that seems to be controlled by fear and how I want to help change that. The thing is, every time that I would sit in front of my computer to start writing this blog words wouldn’t come out. There were so many thoughts going through my brain about the topic that I had no idea where to begin. When I would feel as though I had the perfect introduction in mind it would strike me when I would place my head upon my pillow to go to sleep at night. It was literally the last thing I would think about at night. I would tell myself, “Self, you better remember to write this tomorrow morning.” Obviously I did not do that. I would wake up around 4:15am for work, and I would have this idea in my mind and then I would hold onto it my entire drive to the gym. I would play my part in coaching the 5am and 6am classes and then my break from 7am-930am would begin. At this point over the last few weeks a few different things would happen. 1) I would be extremely tired and decide to take a nap, 2) I would choose to use that time to lift, or 3) I would sit in front of my laptop with the intent to write and all of the thoughts I had in my head the night before seemed unreachable. It was kind of frustrating at times, but I told myself if it didn’t feel right when I sat down to write, it would be better if I chose to write nothing at all. I thought I was simply doing the right thing, but sitting here today I realize I was simply making the mistake many people make in their everyday lives. I was allowing fear to hold me back from doing something I wanted to do. I wanted to write a blog that would help inspire people to look fear in the eyes and tell it to Fuck Off. I want to share my life experiences and my thoughts and feelings because I believe they can help others. The thing I realize today is that I was afraid of writing the article wrong. I was afraid that I would get to wordy, which I tend to do, or I would go off on too many tangents because there are an infinite number of references that can be made when it comes to this topic. I simply realized my fear of writing an imperfect piece was holding me back from writing what will inevitably be an imperfect piece. I also have a belief that each moment of each day is perfect if you are willing to give it 100% of your focus. You will be able to see through the bullshit, let go of your fears that have been generated by the past that lead you to hold yourself back in the future, you will learn infinitely more by giving everything to what is happening right NOW no matter what the situation is. Realize that you will learn from it, acquire knowledge from it, and move forward. This blog is about fear and how I want to do my part to help save a world that is ripping itself apart with fear, anger, and hatred instead of coming together with COURAGE, COMPASSION, PATIENCE, AND LOVE. So, with that knowledge, I will write this imperfect blog based on my thoughts and feelings in a never-ending flow of perfect moments.
FEAR. FEAR is defined in Webster’s Dictionary as an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger. FEARLESS is described as free from fear. LOVE is defined as warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion. I understand that it may seem like I am giving you an English lesson at this point, but I promise that I will explain why I have brought these words up.
I think I should explain how I see fear. I see fear as something that holds people back from doing something or making a choice that they are 100% capable of making. They end up choosing to not make a choice or to make a choice, which they know in their heart they are not 100% behind because they are afraid of something. Fear is usually generated by past experiences, things they have heard from other people, or a fear of an unknown outcome if they make the choice their heart truly desires. When you make a decision to turn away from fear, in many cases, it leads to a less than stellar outcome. I have seen people stay in relationships and sacrifice their own happiness simply because they do not want to hurt someone’s feelings. I have seen people stay in jobs they loathe because they are too afraid to take the steps required to do something they actually enjoy each day. The things that really flash before my eyes each day and cause this topic to pop into my head so often are events that take place in my gym, and in many gyms each and everyday.
I see people that are so afraid to make mistakes they do not relax enough to learn the proper way to do things. I see people so afraid to push themselves beyond their version of their “physical ability,” I can literally see them stop because they are petrified by the burning sensation in their muscles, or a fear of their own strength. Worst of all, in my mind, I see people in my gym, in other gyms, and on social media talk about how afraid they are of certain exercises. Usually when I see something like this I ask the person, “why are you afraid of that?” The usual response is, “because I’m not good at it,” or “because it’s challenging.” Now I don’t know about you, but I do not know if I am totally comfortable living in a society that conditions people to fear challenges, and to fear working to get better at things they might not immediately have a talent for. I personally feel as though the way someone responds to instructions, mistakes, and challenges during a lift or during conditioning usually lets me know how they respond to similar things that happen outside of the gym. They have been conditioned through their life experiences to back down in the face of a challenge, in the face of fear, or run away instead of pushing forward to do something that will benefit them mentally and physically just because it isn’t as easy as they would like it to be. FEAR IS THE KILLER OF SUCCESS IN ALL FACETS OF LIFE. IF YOU ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE CONTROLLED BY FEAR YOU WILL NEVER REALIZE YOUR POTENTIAL. IF YOU ARE NOT HONEST WITH YOURSELF AND OTHERS BECAUSE YOU ARE AFRAID OF THE TRUTH, YOU WILL MAKE YOUR GROWTH AS A HUMAN BEING INFINITELY MORE DIFFICULT.
I too succumb to fear at times. I am a person and I make mistakes. The skill I have developed through patience and practice is a willingness to acknowledge to myself, and others when I am afraid of something. I used to have a fear of being honest about my fears. I was afraid of appearing to be weak in one way or another. The thing is, when you fear something and you hold onto it, it usually manifests itself in the physical world or in your subconscious. The more I feared appearing to be weak, the weaker I probably appeared to be. One day I realized, through my life experiences, by acknowledging my weaknesses I could turn them into strengths.
At this point there are several different paths I can travel when explaining fear, how I have experienced it, how I have seen others experience it, and so on and so forth. I am choosing right now, in this moment, to write about none of those paths. I believe that I mentioned the most important thing when it comes to dealing with fear. Being honest with yourself, and those around you. Once you decide to be totally honest with yourself about what you fear in life and why you fear it you will create the opportunity for yourself to move past it.
Imagine you are asleep and dreaming. In this dream you see yourself standing outside of a building. You are aware you are dreaming and you are in total control of what actions this dream version of yourself will take. There are no consequences in this dream. The building in this dream has no windows and you can see only one entrance. The door says “FEARS.” You decide to open the door and the room is massive, almost completely dark. You physically feel fear taking a hold of you. There is a faint lighted sign and a door on the far side of the room, off in the distance. It simply says “SUCCESS.” You close the door, step back and look for a way to go around the building so that you can circumvent these fears and get to the other side where SUCCESS is waiting for you. Alas, the building extends infinitely to your right and left. It reaches so high vertically that you have no hope of seeing the top. You can’t go around your fears to get to SUCCESS, you can’t go up and over or under them. To reach SUCCESS you will have to find it in you to go directly through everything that you fear. You have no idea how long it will take you to get there. Knowing you have no consequences in this dream, what choice will you make? Will you see SUCCESS in the distance, but close the door to it because you know you will have to go through some things that you are afraid of? Or will you dig deep to find the courage to move forward and reach that SUCCESS no matter how long it takes and no matter what fears you must face?
I am guessing the majority of you reading this, knowing it is just a dream scenario with no consequences would choose to go through to SUCCESS. Now please take a moment to ask yourself why you make the choice to back down when fear presents itself in this world. Do you like the answer you just gave yourself? If not, are you willing to do what it takes to change your mindset in order to achieve your definition of SUCCESS? Are you comfortable living in a world consumed by fear? If not, what are you doing to change it?
The practice of pushing through your fears is something that will help you in every aspect of life. I view it as my job, as my duty, and as my passion to help people in the gym understand that. I have a goal of helping to change to world for the better. Every moment of my life is a chance to make something positive happen. I believe that when someone comes to my gym that I can help them to condition themselves physically to push through challenges. By mastering that skill, I believe, that they will also learn to push through events in life that challenge them emotionally, and mentally as well. It is the practice of focusing on the moment, understanding how you feel, how you think, and why you think and feel that way about the events that are taking place. When someone makes the choice to push through their fears without me having to push them, that is when I feel as though I have made a difference. In the end, all that I can do is show someone a door at the end of a path that I have walked down myself, it is up to them to make the decision to walk through that door. I love helping people more than anything in the world. I made the choice to stop being afraid of opening up about everything thing I think and feel because I believe that the more honest I am with someone, the more honest they will be with me and themselves. That is how we can change the world. As much as human beings are different, we are all inherently the same. We enjoy life more when we are happy. Secrets do not make you happy. Lies do not make you happy. Being negative towards ourselves and others does not make us happy. Make the choice to open your heart. Make the choice to open your mind. We are all in this world together, so lets help each other to make it the best world that we can. I LOVE YOU.
EVERYBODYLOVEEVERYBODY. FREEYOURMIND. THEREISNOQUIT. MINDSET. ALWAYSLEARNING. ITALLSTARTSWITHYOU. LOVE>FEAR