In the scheme of things and in the living of my life I’ve learned one thing really important: Fear never really goes away. I can quiet fear, ignore fear, or try to trick myself out of fear, but it’s always still there for me. The only thing that works? To dance with fear.
You see, when I dance, the world shifts on its axis. I get into contact with what’sreally real, and at the same time I am transported to a magical place where I feel strong, vibrant, and capable. When I’m dancing, I look like this:
Lots of people say to me,
“But Kypris, you always look so calm. Your presence is so soothing and safe”. And I always tell them that I work at it. I work at it a lot.
I remember the exact moment when I decided I was sick and tired of being scared. I was on a trip with my husband in San Francisco. I was sitting in a perfectly beautiful cafe outdoors on a gorgeous day. I couldn’t enjoy any of it because I was so panicked. I don’t even remember why. Maybe it was just being in a strange place, or maybe I was worried about not being able to find my way in a strange city. Whatever the reason, my heart was pounding, I was shaking, and forget about trying to actually drink my tea!
I got kinda mad. Even though I was freaking out, I knew it wasn’t what I wanted to do. I remember trying to breathe deeply and calm down, to connect to the Earth and let that spiritual support center me. But it just wasn’t happening.
That day I made a commitment to myself to end the fear, somehow. Or at least to be able to manage it.
I began doing daily spiritual practice that I call the Sacred Tree Meditation. At first it was only 10 minutes — I couldn’t sit still any longer than that! But gradually, over time, and with the support of my spiritual teachers I was able to meditate fully and completely for a longer period. But more importantly, the fear started to recede.
Why? Well, I think it’s because when I meditate I actually can feel the presence of a wonderfully loving force that is taking care of me. Running around in my daily life, I was too busy to feel any of that. But in meditation I started to “plug in” more quickly.
In addition to meditation, I did mindful movement. I’ve always been a big fan of yoga, but my body was asking for more vigorous movement, so I began studying bellydance. Using my intuition, I found my way to a sinous series of bellydance movements that helped me tune into my true self and let go of fear. There was something about moving my body in a mindful state that brought hope, confidence, and sheer joy into my being. I wish that for you.
I knew that I had “graduated” from my dancing with fear program when I encountered a snake one day on a hike. My first instinctual reaction was curiosity, rather than fear. I stood for a long time looking at that snake, wondering what it would do (it eventually slithered off in search of food). Since that time I’ve traveled to Peru alone, climbed mountains, and backpacked for 4-5 days in the wilderness. All without fear. I’ve learned to engage my curiosity in unfamiliar situations, and it has given me tremendous freedom in life.
Today fear is coming up in other places. Although I no longer feel scared about traveling, I do feel fear about my value, my success, and the legacy I will leave in the world. I guess it’s something that happens when you’re over 50 — new things become important that weren’t important before. But as these new fears arise, I’m dancing with them!
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If you’d like more help learning to dance with fear, I have a couple of other ways to support you. The first is my new Shamanic Clarity and Balance e-course. Or you might want to join me for a new round of my Six Gateways Shamanic Initiations, a 6-week class beginning on January 1. If you’d prefer one-on-one support, I offer that too. To get started, just click here for a free 15-minute consultation with me.