Choosing courage over fear

Urdhva dhanurasana

Every time I do a drop back I choose courage over fear. It’s not easy and it will never be. You just learn how to believe in yourself and you get stronger every single time that you decide not to give up.

My hands are sometimes shaking, my breathe is slightly agitated. I am scared. Sometimes relieved when I feel my hands touching the mat and realize I am still in one piece.

It’s my biggest challenge at the moment. Bigger than balancing in Headstand in the middle of the room with no one to support me has ever been. And I could have not imagined that just a couple of months ago.

Despite the fact, it’s almost 2 months since I put the daily work in dropping back, this morning I felt more scared than I usually feel. I placed my palms in front of the chest, grounded my feet and legs into the mat, lengthened my spine, shifted the pelvis forward and then dropped the head back. Almost ready for it… When I suddenly got panicked and came up to standing again… The moment I realized what a great deal of courage dropping back requires, I got scared and I stopped.

It is the same in life. The moments when we get scared are usually the moments when something magical is about to happen.

But I do not want anymore to stop losing wonderful opportunities just because I am scared. So I accepted my fear and decided to work with it. I won’t let it stop me from doing something that I am ready for.

I took a few breaths to calm myself down. I’ve done this before and I think I can do it today as well. There was no physical limitation, only my mind that freaked out realizing what the body was actually doing.

So I tried once again. I did not give up. And again. And again. Managed the 3 drop backs without any problem.

However standing up from wheel it has been a challenge. I tried and I tried and I tried, but today I could not do it. I could do it yesterday, but not today. Maybe tomorrow it will be possible again. My legs did not want to cope with me. They were heavy and burning, but still I could not find the strength to lift up. I do not know for how long I stood exactly in wheel, balancing and trying to lift up. It was hot and sweaty and my legs were burning. I put the effort! I did not give up on the first try.

There was a small feeling of disappointment. Just a small one 🙂 In the past it could have definitely been a bigger one. I managed to find acceptance. Every day feels different, everyday we are different, but if we continue to put the daily work, everything will eventually come. As Pattabhi Jois used to say “only lazy people cannot practice”.

I could have never imagined that at my age I will manage to drop back and stand up for the first time in my life. For a while, I thought this was possible only for those people that have been practicing a very long time and maybe started when they were children. I believed it may come to me someday, but probably after 10-15-20 years of daily practice. It looks like the posture came to me earlier. But it’s not about that. It’s about the fact it came exactly at the right time.

I truly feel this was the next step into my journey. I needed to work through fear.

As I child, I did not fall many times because my mom was always there to protect me or better said overprotect me. So I built up a phobia against falling and hurting myself.

Working through the fear of falling it’s a tremendous challenge for me. Every time I put the palms together in front of my chest and prepare to drop back, there is a sense of fear. I am scared, but in that moment of fear, somehow I find the strength to let go and believe in myself. And when I believe in myself, everything that seems impossible suddenly becomes possible. I get stronger. I feel how it is reshaping myself, my thinking, my nervous system.

It is amazing how this daily practice changes us. Some days are crappy, others are magic. Just like in life 🙂 There is progress in daily practice and there is a lot of change for those that commit themselves do not give up. Sometimes it’s hard to see you are moving forward and you might feel trapped, but even in that moment without you knowing it, you are making a great deal of progress. It’s in the moment when you want to quit, but decide not to, that you grow.

It takes a great deal of commitment and courage to embark upon a journey of self-discovery and it’s amazing.

I do not want to leave this Earth without knowing that I did not do my best. So I am choosing courage over fear. Ashtanga, you are exactly as they said! 🙂

© Unfold Your Mat 2017



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