It was almost a year ago that I stood with my pink blind fold on amidst a sea of hoopers, surrounded by a redwood forest on the great field at Hoop Camp. As the sun went down and the beats picked up the Hoop Path team lead us into our flow and a journey to connect with our high selves. It was Ann who offered up the words “you know how to dance, you were born knowing, you just need to remember” My spirit bubbled in that moment and a rush of flow serged through me. It was later on that I wondered how many other hoopers felt such connection with those very same, powerful words.
Time and time again I hear or see the vibes that go along with “oh but I can’t dance” or “I have never been very good at dancing” even “I don’t really know how to dance, so I don’t think I can do this”. I know for certain I have similar lingering vibrations in my old thought patterns. It is the emotion that is swirling around inside these thoughts, an emotion we all stumble upon, grapple with and explore – fear.
Tokyo-based hooper and writer Trixie Maru is our special guest today. Her powerful post on fear is sure to get discussions whizzing and heads nodding.
Hooping, for me, is all about facing fears and then overcoming them. For as long as I can remember, I’ve considered myself to be what you would call physically uncoordinated. In gym classes I was ridiculed and embarrassed by my apparent lack of ability. One of the biggest blows came when I moved to a school that graded students on their athletic abilities rather than their efforts and I got a C- (the lowest possible passing grade) in PE when we were studying badminton. The teacher’s comments read something like this: “Though Melissa tries, she has failed to grasp the skills of badminton.” Thanks a lot, Mr. Tait.
For the longest time, I thought that not being good at sports meant that I wasn’t athletic or that I didn’t enjoy doing physical activities. It wasn’t until I started dancing that I realized that there are certain forms of physical expression that don’t require you to be “good” in order to enjoy them. Every once in a while I’ll see myself dancing and the fear will come back, I’ll find myself thinking that I look like an idiot, but for the most part I don’t care.
When I started hooping, a lot of the old fears from elementary school and high school came back. I struggled to learn how to keep the hoop up, how to do tricks, and how to feel comfortable with other people watching me as I wrestled with these tasks. I wish I could say that the fear has completely dissipated and now I’m completely comfortable with my hooping, but that is not the case. I still find myself afraid that I don’t measure up or that I look stupid to those around me. But at the same time, one thing that is different now is that I have learned to persevere. When I go through those moments of doubt and insecurity, I have learned that instead of letting them prevent me from doing something, I should just think the thoughts and move on.
Hoop Mantra: I am greater than my fear!
Action of the day: a) as your fear encased thoughts and actions creep into your hoop practice combat them with radically alternative thoughts either voiced or clearly thought e.g when the thought “oh what if I drop the hoop in front of these people watching me” enters your head combat it with “i am a miraculously agile and sticky fingered performer, I execute my delicious hoop moves with ecstatic confidence” b) Do something a little scary, or a lot scary today. In fact do it everyday for the next 24 days of HBC. Go on live a little!
Question of the day: a) What are you fearful of? b) What techniques do you employ when you feel fear rising up?
Positive Affirmation: I am safe. I trust the flow of life completely.
Inspiration: The greatest mistake you can make in life is to continually be afraid you will make one. Elbert Hubbard
Here’s to making peace with our fears.