I want to talk about being afraid and feeling fear. We all feel fear. When something matters to us we feel fear.
I used to feel fear going into every single race that I raced, every school session that I did in preparation for those races, and I feel afraid, now, going into or being in the midst of the biggest challenge of my life.
The reason why I want to talk about fear so openly is that we all get afraid. We all feel fear. But the key is to not have that fear paralyze us as it can. When I was younger it would paralyze me and it kept me from being able to do the things I wanted to do. But what I learned throughout my journey and triathlon is it you need to embrace that fear.
Let’s reframe fear as something that’s good.
What if fear was that thing that truly allowed us to concentrate to mobilize everything we have inside ourselves to bring it to whatever task is at hand? To whatever it is that we are afraid of are wanting to do well at or wanting to succeed? What fear is what gave us the ability to mobilize all our strengths, all our abilities, everything we have inside of us to be successful?
What if fear was a good thing?
Tony Robbins always says, and I used to say this as well, “Dance with your fear.” Instead of fighting against it or pushing up against it or trying to pretend that you’re not afraid, acknowledge the fact that ‘yes I’m feeling this fear and it’s because I care.”
Right now I care about living. I want to live this incredible gift of life. So I get afraid, of course, I do, but one of the secrets is that when you replace that fear and reframe what fear means to you, that can be really helpful.
But also, another thing Tony Robbins always says is gratitude is an antidote to everything. Gratitude is an antidote to anger. Gratitude is an antidote to fear.
So in the moments where I get really afraid and I feel like it’s almost about to paralyze me, what I do is I switch my brain to think about everything that I’m grateful for. I am so grateful that I have my beautiful wife and my incredible mom by my side every single step of this journey. I am so grateful for all of you and the love and support that you’re showering upon me that’s giving me so much strength. I’m so grateful that I’m in the most incredible hands with my doctors and nurses at UC Health. I am so grateful for the health, energy and vitality and the strength of mind that I have now. I’m so grateful for my mindset and my ability to be able to recognize negative thoughts but replace them with the positive one that I truly believe in.
So as we all get afraid, remember we get afraid because we care. We care about making a difference. We care about succeeding. We care about doing a good job. We care about the people we love. We care about our health. We care about our life.
So being afraid is natural. We’re all human. But it’s how we look and define that fear and what we do about it. Dance with your fears. Acknowledge it. Have it allow you to mobilize everything you need inside of you to approach the task at hand with all your best ensuring that you will do a great job or that you will succeed. Then be grateful instead of being afraid at the start line of this big race that you’re going to do. Be grateful. ‘Wow. I did what it took to arrive at this starting line. I’m arriving at the start line fit, strong, fast and ready to race. I’m grateful for that.’
Be grateful. It will dissipate the fear and it will allow you to tap into your strength and be all that you need to be.
Thank you, everyone, and have an amazing day.
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