Fears are something we all have in common, maybe not the fear of the same things, but we have all felt fear at one point in our lives. I recently had the opportunity to do something that I am pretty afraid of. As much as I love to ride my bikes, I am terrified of biking down steep, windy mountain roads. But to be fair, I am also fearful of being in a car on mountain roads. There are not too many things that I am afraid of, I like snakes, I love zip lining and have even rappelled off the top of the AT&T building; however, mountain roads seem to be my nemesis.
While in North Carolina, I found a few amazing cyclists who welcomed me to their group ride. I explained my fear to them and they were very encouraging. They even gave me some helpful tips for descending mountain roads. Although I have ridden in the mountains two other times, they were very scary experiences and I descended very slowly (Sometimes walking my bike down. Sad, but unfortunately true.). This time was much different, I decided I was facing my fear. I decided I was going to make it down the mountain safely, without being scared the entire time. And I did it! It was not only exhilarating, but also a huge weight lifted off of me.
Everyone has some sort of fear in their life, the question I have is: is your fear stopping you from doing something amazing? Are you afraid to sign up for that race? Or are you scared to try a new exercise class? I know people who want to lose weight but are so afraid of failing, they never begin. There are so many people frightened to swim in the ocean, so they do not want to do a triathlon. Fear stops so many people from experiencing what other people enjoy.
If there is something you want to do, but fear is holding you back, my advice is to find someone who you trust that can help guide you through the experience. Trying to overcome fear by yourself can be very difficult. A supportive friend might just be the solution you need and could be the most defining moment for you. I know the great group of cyclists in North Carolina helped me!
Sometimes you have to take a leap of faith to experience what may seem scary, yet can become something wonderful. As Will Smith once said, “God placed the best things in life on the other side of terror.” Come join us on the other side!