I will share with you one insight when I did this exercise. This is it. On the surface, I was afraid of dying—fair enough, right? I was 38 years old at the time, but when I went deeper, my true fear, my “why” was that I was 38 years old and even though I had done all the things in life that I was supposed to do—get a good job, find a nice man, buy a nice house and a nice car—I felt that I had never truly lived…that I had never really experienced life…it was a profound moment for me.
I sat with that for a while, but that feeling never left me a few years later. I did the unthinkable. I left a very well paying career, sold my car, rented my house, packed my bags and set off on an adventure, both internally and externally. In the second guide, Pasha Hogan talked about answering the call to adventure. This was it for me…
I had absolutely no idea where it would lead me and for a reforming control freak, that was huge for me. But, this is where it took me—to live in Bali for a year and meet a amazing local healer, to study Italian in a university in Florence, being invited to photograph a traditional Balinese wedding that outsiders are never invited to, teach English to eager little minds in both Laos and Cambodia and providing an avenue for cancer survivors to empower themselves after treatment.
Over the past few years, I have lived and worked all around the world. I didn’t plan for it, but I faced my fear and made decisions to make it happen. I have lived a life of experiences. In Ubud in Bali, I met a young man named Made. He was my house manager and earned US$200 per month. His father was a rice farmer, who had been diagnosed with cancer. There is no health care for locals in Bali. His father was unable to work in the fields as often as he needed, so his income was reduced as a result. The cost for chemotherapy was US$1,000 per treatment, the same as in a western, more affluent culture. My friends were gracious and paid for some treatment for his dad, who was doing well the last time I was in contact with Made.
As Terri Wingham said in her interview, “I met people that would have traded places with me in a minute”. And so have I.
I am no longer scared of dying, but I am not ready to go just yet, as in the last few years, I have lived more and experienced more than I had in my lifetime before that. Overcoming fear was not about jumping out of a plane for me. As Florence Strang says, it could be just making a commitment to exercise for 30 minutes per day, five days a week. Simple baby steps…
Really, it’s about understanding your “why” and making the simple lifestyle changes, so that you feel you are doing everything you can to live the healthiest lifestyle possible FOR YOU. Understand and deal with your deepest fear, and the fear of recurrence with lessen its hold over you.
I have an event coming up in June, where we will give you more insight into the “how to” and skills of those healthy life changes you can make to empower yourself. For now, sit with and really understand your “why”…
What did you learn about your “why” from doing this simple exercise?
P.S. It was while I was living in Bali that I started working through what I needed to do to provide an avenue for cancer survivors to empower themselves after treatment. 🙂 …I thought you might like to have a look at some of the images from my travels.
P.P.S. Traveling the world may not be the “normal’ you are looking for BUT facing your fear can lead you to some unexpected places….