Feel The Fear and DO IT ANYWAY!
BY DI WESTAWAY | CEO and Founder of Wild Women On Top
"You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing you think you cannot do." - Eleanor Roosevelt
“Each of us must confront our own fears, must come face to face with them. How we handle our fears will determine where we go with the rest of our lives. To experience adventure or to be limited by the fear of it.” Judy Blume
Last Monday our office team went wild.
We escaped the email avalanche, housework and family responsibilities – in my case, domestic chaos – and went Canyoning.
Not just any canyon … a stunningly beautiful, technical water obstacle course canyon, finishing with a 30 meter abseil through a massive waterfall - also known as Empress Canyon in the Blue Mountains.
OMG! That’s a recipe for FEAR & Exhilaration.
We definitely got both. And the members of our team who were the most frightened got the BEST BUZZ ever! With the support of our team, they overcame white knuckled fear, and had extreme fun!
There was even more exhilaration around the recent Wild Women On Top Sydney Coastrek in THAT WEATHER! As if trekking 50-100k along the soft sand, undulating bush tracks and rocky headlands of the coast wasn’t enough of a challenge for our teams of 4; they embraced the extreme weather, monsoonal rains, almost gale force winds and high tides.
And the teams that faced the fear, worked together as a team and supported each other FINISHED. Then they experienced exhilaration … on a grand scale. Ha ha ha .. the exhilaration definitely comes later. - sometimes a lot later, depending on how sore you are! :-)
We witness a similar emotion every time a group of Wild Women On Top return from one of our challenging treks. And even in Trek Training when women push the boundaries, face the fear, and do it anyway.
Comments like: “Wow. You’ve changed my life. I was paralysed with fear on some rocks. Now I know I can do it and I’m never going back into the gym. Wild Walking really works,” Kay Soozer. And “Trek Training really takes me out of my comfort zone. I feel fitter and stronger and it gives me much more confidence professionally and in every day of my life.” Louise Fisher.
And, “Last night Kel was just brilliant – I panicked and got scared, and she helped me safely to the top of the rocks. … Those moments really help to create a strong sense of team and also give us all confidence that if we encounter something outside our comfort zone, it wont be the end of the world.” Karen Thompson.
Our photos and comments on Facebook say it all. WHAT a BUZZ! This is LIVING!
But what is it about facing and conquering fear that is so exciting and empowering?
Fear is an emotion induced by a perceived threat which causes us pull away and usually hide. It is a basic survival mechanism. According to surveys, some of the most common fears are of cockroaches, spiders, snakes, heights, water, enclosed spaces, tunnels, bridges, needles, social rejection, failure and public speaking. (Wikipedia)
In our challenging wilderness environment, we face many of these common fears. And we gain confidence by overcoming them. We come to realize that the fear is only in our mind. But how fantastic to face these fears with a group of positive ludicrously enthusiastic women, who encourage and support us through ALL life’s challenges.
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” Nelson Mandela