Flirting With Fear

28 February 2021 | It’s late in the evening, struggling to make sense of all the thoughts in my mind. I’m desperately trying to finish this blog post so I can meet my monthly target of posting at least one blog post. For some reason, words fail me and the former “perfectionist” in me tries hard to resurface, telling me to prioritize perfectionism over getting it done. I struggle to reconcile how I’ve survived for so many years, living in constant fear of scrutiny, failure and God forbid mediocrity!

LMT Adventures

My struggle with fear spans over decades, where I’ve often felt I needed to prove myself. I’ve allowed my fear to overpower and imprison me, keeping me up all night before my Statistics (STK) 120 supplementary exam at TUKS – scared of failing AGAIN! Let’s not forget about my fear of living out boldly, being present in the moment without worrying about tomorrow’s to-do list or what people would say. I’ve procrastinated about making big life changing decisions, because I was worried about the financial commitments such as my mortgage bond and keeping up with the Nthebe’s; when my mental health took serious strain.

In a recent conversation with a dear friend and social entrepreneur, Paballo Mokoqo; I was introduced to a new concept that challenged, but got me very excited. She called it “flirting with fear”. Gosh, this kept me up all night! For the first time in a long while, my monologues made sense. I was not crazy after all! I finally had the guts to have a conversation with my fear- bold enough to ask tough questions, such as “is this it?” “Is this my purpose?” “Am I really happy?”

I dared to flirt a little, to flirt with my fear with the hope of “scoring” .

Hiking at LMT Adventures

I decided to take things further, went on an adventure date with my fear at LMT Adventures, situated in Maseru, Lesotho to shoot content for my upcoming video. My day started with a 8m hike up a mountain, did some archery, abseiling and rap rope jumping.

Archery at LMT Adventures

The truth is I’m not really big on extreme sports nor am I comfortable with heights, but I was determined. Till this day, I am still traumatized from my swing jump at Moses Mabhida in 2018, but not even that memory would stand in my way. So as much as the day was about shooting and creating great memories for my YouTube channel, my call to action was much bigger. I wanted to confront my fear head on. I wanted to flirt with my fear!

If I had to be honest, a greater part of the previous year was spent deep in thought; contemplating a number of changes. Like most people, I procrastinated and never took the necessary action to make things happen. I convinced myself that I was not ready, that the timing wasn’t perfect, that we were in the middle of a pandemic. The misconception that “I have things figured out” also made it’s way to the surface, prolonging a decision that needed to be made. I settled, terrified of being inconvenienced, scared to raffle my feathers, TRAPPED! I wanted a change, I NEEDED a change, but I was scared. The thing with fear is if you do not deal with it, it will consume and forever hold you hostage.

Nervous, second guessing my decision I sat at the edge of the mountain; ready to rap jump 35m down. The wind hit my face gently, pupils dilated and heart beat pacing. I was scared, very scared, but I was determined. “What’s the worst that could happen?” I asked myself.

Abseiling at LMT Adventures

Gradually I got closer to the edge and jumped. My mind went blank for a brief second, waiting to hit the ground. I opened my eyes and I was still alive, afloat mid air. I was in control, hands all over the place. I looked down, smiled a little and I was not as terrified. I was on a date, on a date with my fear!

Rap jumping at LMT Adventures

The thing about fear (like the founder of LMT Adventures describes it) “false evidence appearing as real” is it’s ability to terrorize and limit us from living our lives. We unconsciously allow the false evidence to permeate, settle and eventually appear as real. We hold back and risk not pursuing the things that make us happy.

Am I still scared? Well, yes I am! The difference however, is I’m a little daring, willing to flirt. I’m willing to flirt with my fear, challenge myself to jump, take the leap and pursue my wildest dreams. My question is are you willing to flirt with your fear?

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