Let Your Fear Inspire You By Laurel Attanasio

The truth is, I am afraid of a lot! Despite my confident demeanor on the mat and in front of my classes, there are so many things I avoid simply because I am afraid. I know I am not the only one because I see my students, friends, colleagues and family act out of fear or not act at all because something scares them.

So, I am ready to chat about one of my biggest fears in an effort to get over it. I am putting it out there in the world and I hope you are ready to put some of yours out there too! Here it goes…I hate being in front of the camera. I honestly hate having my picture taken and I hate being filmed. I have slowly begun to face that fear since social media basically requires us to expose our lives and our faces on a daily basis, but I am still terrified of being filmed.

For years, many of you have asked me to create yoga videos, and I shrugged it off and said it was not necessary or that I would get to it one day. Truth is, I never planned to do it because I was and am afraid to do it. There is something so terrifying about seeing myself talk, move and teach. There is something terrifying about seeing ourselves through our own lens. It is not about the camera, but rather my perception of what I see on the camera. So many thoughts, judgements and, again, fears run through me.

I think this is a common fear, but I know that there are so many others out there. I have a friend who is afraid to try surfing, my sister is terrified of taking tests, my husband is afraid of heights… There is nothing wrong with having fears as long as they do not stop you from moving forward. My fears were doing exactly that.

As yogis, I feel that our actions off the mat and on the mat always parallel each other. Similar to my aversion to the camera, if I am afraid of a pose, I most likely won’t try it. There are very few poses out there that give me the butterflies, but they do exist. The real conversation is not about the fear on your mat or off the mat, but rather about how you are going to overcome it.

For me, this is my first step. I am putting it out there in the world knowing that you will all expect me to overcome this fear. I cannot promise perfection, but I can promise I will try. In return, I ask you to do the same. What is holding you back? What are you afraid of? What fears are stopping you from living a more fulfilling life? I would love to hear about your journey because you always get to hear about mine. Keep me in the loop and let me know how everything is going. And, I promise to share my videos via Gather sooner rather than later.


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