As a child, I loved swimming. I played in the ocean and wouldn’t miss the opportunity to play in the pool, splash around, swim to the deep end and lay out all day in the sun. Then, I had an incident, in childhood, in which I slipped and hurt myself in the pool, panicked and nearly drowned… or at least it felt that way. From that moment forward, my love of water had been from a distance. I loved watching the ocean, whilst laying on the sand, watching other people splash around in the pool, from a lounge chair… wishing that I had dealt with the trauma in my youth. While my mind knew that swimming is like riding a bike – a skill that can’t be unlearned – my body knew different, sending me into a panic every time I went too deep. The way the mind responds to trauma is a big, ugly bitch!
When I had children of my own, I made sure that they were taught how to swim at young ages. I even tried lessons with them before… HA! I wasn’t ready. I hated being the grown woman that “couldn’t swim” and that I allowed my mind to actually believe that. With my 41st birthday creeping up, I just couldn’t go out like that anymore! I got my mind and inner(G) in the right place, signed up for private swimming lessons, and wouldn’t you know it… the instincts kicked back in on the very first day of class and I was all over the pool, swimming from one length to the other. Life skill re-learned. Body conquered mind. Out of fear’s grasp.
It’s crazy how powerful a force fear is… how your very own mind can subconsciously be working against your body! When the mind projects fear within itself and starts imagining all of what it doesn’t want, if the fear is not dealt with early on, it will take root within your consciousness. And then these thoughts repeat themselves… over and over again… sometimes for years, or lifetimes. That’s deep. The power of the mind is sooooo effective, whether it’s working for or against you. Perhaps if I had projected images in my mind in remembrance of knowing that I could swim all along, the fear wouldn’t have consumed me for so long? Why do we project images in our minds of events and fears that we don’t want to actualize? It’s a good thing to know what it is that you fear, but here’s the key – create visualizations on the exact opposite of what the fear is suggesting. If you fear sickness, affirm health. If you fear poverty, affirm wealth. If you fear swimming, affirm your inner mermaid…and take some swimming lessons! Get gangster about eliminating your fears before they take root!
xoxo, Naima Woodson, Beachbum Wisdom
Follow my journey @beachbumwisdom and @beachbumwisdomtravels