I noticed a common theme occurring in my life this week so it only felt right to blog about it. The common tie between courage and fear. Fear is something all of us face, every single day. Whether big or small we all face some sort of fear. It takes courage to face those fears in the eye and not allow them to control our lives. Fears can almost paralyze us to the point where we cannot truly live life to the fullest. Conquering fear takes a trust in something beyond us. A trust that everything will be ok.
Fears. I hear about them in every form all day long. “I can’t do Pilates. I’m too fat.” You are not too fat! “I’m not strong enough to do that pose!” Yeah you are! Trust me, we know! “I’m too old to get any better.” Fears! You’re never too old! And it is our job to encourage you and help you to face those fears and stop believing in them. We all have to start somewhere right? Stop making excuses. Stop being scared. I have so many tools just waiting to help you reach your goals. Summon up that inner courage! I know it’s there!
When I was in fourth grade I went on a Girl Scout horseback outing. My horse saw lightning in the distance, reared up and took me for a two mile ride outside of the trail. I fell off the saddle but caught my foot in the stirrup, being dragged for about a mile. When my foot finally released from the stirrup I was found unconscious, with no movement. My mom was sure I was dead, as she had watched the horse take off. I remember waking up and feeling pain everywhere in my body that I had never felt before. One of the leaders asked me “Can you move your arm?”
I listened to him and tried but it hurt so bad! Then he asked me if I could move my foot. Again, I could, but the pain was excruciating. I remember looking at my mom as tears streamed down her face. I had no idea what the implications of these questions meant. All I knew was it hurt really bad. Which now I know was a really good thing.
Two broken humerus bones, a severely fractured foot, and scars on my body that I still see to this day, were the result of that injury. Plus, an absolute fear of ever getting on a horse again. I was terrified. I was terrified until the age of 36. It’s not that I ever hated horses. I just didn’t want to ride on one ever again. But something changed in me. This need to get rid of that fear. So I literally got back up on the horse and felt a passion I cannot explain. Now whenever I am asked if I want to ride, my immediate response is “YES!” What a liberating feeling.
In college my fear of public speaking and just talking to strangers in general was crippling. It was so incredibly frustrating. I at first was a nursing major, switched to History, then to English and finally I went to my counselor. “I want to be a theater major.” My counselor looked more annoyed that anything having become used to me coming in on monthly basis, but she helped me get all my classes in order.
And so I became a theater student! I had also started taking voice lessons because somewhere along my journey I figured out I loved to sing. Performing terrified me. Like terrified where the thought brought up images of me dying while in front of a crowd. I just knew death was on the horizon standing in front of a crowd. What if I messed up and they laughed at me? After deciding to go balls to the walls in ASU’s theater program, I also began finding out how I could sing the National Anthem for ASU sports. I auditioned and was picked immediately to sing.
My first time was at a baseball game. I remember 5 minutes before I told my dad I needed to use the bathroom. I barely went. I wanted to run. I wanted to pass out right then and there and wake up when the game was over, where I had an excuse as to why I couldn’t perform. I wanted out. I knew in that moment that I would never, ever, ever perform again. This feeling sucked. I remember walking down to the field thinking, “Well, it was a good run.” I grabbed the mic and thought I was literally going to die. Then something weird happened. I opened up my mouth, the words came out, the song went well and it was done. And…I was still alive! I listened as the crowd cheered and I smiled, finally noticing my hands shaking like crazy.
“How was it?” My dad asked.
“I can’t remember. But I think it was ok."
So after declaring I would never, ever perform again I sang for 3 seasons of men’s and women’s basketball games, 3 seasons of women’s softball, 3 men’s baseball and finally I was asked by the Phoenix Coyotes to sing for 30,000 fans the National Anthem for America and Canada. I later moved to LA where I continued performing and started auditioning for TV shows, commercials and major motion pictures. I didn’t die. But still to this day right before I perform I have to pee. Weird I know.
My other fear has always been of heights and falling. So what did I do? I signed up for aerial classes. Guess what? You fall and you’re high up! But it’s now one of my biggest passions.
We have two options in this life. To be crippled by our fears or to live in courage and conquer those fears. We all face fears every single day. I’ll never stop being scared. But I have learned that it is my choice to stay there or move forward. Sometimes I become paralyzed in fear not knowing what to do. My stomach turns. My heart races. I begin to think I can’t do it. And then I breathe and realize I can tackle it.
I am not only a trainer, I am a certified counselor and life couch. I am a nutritionist. I am a personal trainer, a Pilates Instructor and most importantly I am your biggest fan. You will not fail with me by your side every step of the way. Best part? You’ll never be bored with me. Come on! What are you waiting for? Becoming your personal best is just one step away. A scary step but why not devote yourself to conquering that today? I am so excited to help you reach your personal best and feel the amazing difference that I have through this practice. Be courageous. For your family, your friends and most importantly yourself.