A snowboarder, Ester Ledecka, won gold in women’s Super G in the winter Olympics earlier today. As I watched her run, my mind thought fearless – that’s why she won. (In addition to technical skills and lots of practice, of course.)
What does fearless mean?
Does it mean without fear? Not really. We can act fearlessly even if there is fear. As some say, courage is to do something in spite of fear.
Does it mean not being stopped by fear? Yes, certainly. That’s a pretty good definition.
And how do we get there? How do we get to a place where we don’t stop ourselves when we experience fear? Here are some ways:
Inquire into the beliefs around fear. What are my stressful beliefs about fear, or situations triggering fear? What do I find when I investigate these beliefs? (The Work.)
Inquire into how the mind creates its experience of the fear, and the threat within the fear. Allow the bond between the sensations and thoughts (images, words) making up these charged experiences to soften and fall away. (Living Inquiries.)
Change my relationship to the fear. Dialogue with the fear. Explore how it’s here to protect me, and how it has a function and comes from care and love. (Voice Dialogue, Big Mind Process.) Use heart centered practices to befriend fear and what the fear trigger in me. (Ho’oponopono, tonglen.)
Rest with the fear. Notice and allow the sensations. Notice and allow the images and words. Rest with noticing it all. Allow it as is. Allow it as it’s changing. Notice the space it’s all happening within and as.
Act in spite of the fear. When we keep acting on something in spite of fear, and perhaps build up from action we have a small amount of fear about to those we experience more fear around, we learn that it’s OK to act in spite of fear. We shift out of the pattern of letting the fear control of. We live it. This is an essential component.
Use therapeutic trembling (TRE) to release tension and trauma related to fear and the fear-triggering situations.
If we have access to effective energy healing, like Vortex Healing, we can use that as well. We can invite emotional issues around fear, and reactivity to it, to clear.
And, of course, it helps to feel we don’t have too much to live up to and not very strong expectations of ourself. In other words, it helps to have investigated beliefs and identifications around that too, release the charges, hold it more lightly, and invite our relationship to it to change.
Fear has a function. It’s put into us through evolution to make us appropriately cautious. And when emotional issues and reactivity to it is released, that’s when we can relate to it with more clarity. That’s when it won’t hinder us inappropriately yet still serves the function of making us take appropriate action. It helps us not take too much of a risk. In the case of Super G, it may motivate us to develop the skills needed, and make sure we have the right equipment, to give it all on the way down.