Yogi Warrior: Being With Fear

PART 2 – When restlessness sets in, any distraction is accepted so we don’t have to feel what’s really there. We have to just be honest and except that fear is perhaps lurking in everything we do. Our lack of mindfulness, alongside constant distraction, is what stops us from seeing that it is there. We pay little attention to anything beyond our self-importance, so there is little awareness of our actual mental and physical condition, unless it is screaming and we are in trouble. And then we cannot understand how the same mental patterns are not finding answers to the problems they have created. And then we are screaming again internally and around we go.

When we look at our fear we may see nervousness, worry, inadequacy and anxiety. It is hiding underneath our daily actions and with us in all our moments. But that is only because there is something there that we are not getting in touch with. Something that we do not understand and have yet to fully experience and perhaps let go of. There is a chance that what unfolds may open your heart – but with it there may be some sadness and emotion as you come face to face with what really lies beneath. The approach requires softness, gentleness and courage.

We can come out the other side with a new zest for life as we gain confidence in the ability to deal with our fear. We gain a deeper capacity to connect with others and ourselves, and we do it with an open heart, care and softness, and we gain trust in this approach. This is the growth of the Yogi Warrior. The heart opens as we become free from the doubt of being ok just as we are – not what we think we are or should be. We all have moments like this, but often we don’t understand how it comes about. Mindfulness and meditation practice can help us with this.

This softness is the means to be in touch with all that is going on around you. We don’t become passive and withdrawn but develop the capacity to respond to any situation that comes your way with clarity and fearlessness. The core of our being becomes strong, resilient and robust. We are no longer brittle on the inside and easily cracked. Like steel wrapped in the softness of cotton – flexible like bamboo.

Dancing with our fear will take us beyond the word ‘no’, which keeps us looking for acceptance, keeps us limited to not being good enough or doing enough, not having lived up to expectations, full of fear and doubt about whether we will accomplish something.

We learn to move beyond our limitations, our fears, not because someone told us we can (of course, sometimes we need a little push), but because with an open heart we understand that we always have been able to do so. We learn to be with the unfamiliar, and even if we are thrown off-balance we re-gain our composure and continue along.

 ‘If you don’t need it – then throw it out!’

is a quote from our yoga teacher. He would often shout this in the middle of our practice in his thick indian accent. Throw out those moments of entertainment that bring you nothing. The moments of ‘he said, and she said, and have you heard about, and look at me, and am I doing good, and look at her and am I better?, and all those things that stop you from experiencing yourself fearlessly just as you are. Develop simplicity and naturalness and you may find that there is resourcefulness there. Give up what you don’t need. Have the courage and determination to move on.

So, with gentleness, relax your body and mind, and open your heart. Don’t be afraid of softening your hard edges – it requires courage – let go your armor and thick skin, and dance with your fear.

Happy Practice to all practitioners everywhere.