Before you read on, a similar version of this post is available as podcast Episode 25 - We Can Do Hard Things. And if you're a little like me, you'll enjoy sipping on tea as you take in each written word.
I recently received my blue belt in jiu-jitsu. If you're unfamiliar with BJJ, check this out. (yep, that's me!).
Since then, I've been reflecting on how I got here. I'm always intrigued by the ways our desires come into fruition, especially as a woman who once had no reverence for or understanding of her own (desires).
Before I began my BJJ journey, there was a part of me who was intensely afraid of being a loser; being seen as one, perceived as one and being an actual one.
This 'loser' part of me is a part of me that I had abandoned and rejected. I not only denied that I was a loser, I also went to great lengths to ensure that I would never be seen as one.
My 'loser self' had been suppressed as a result of past experiences and BJJ had opened up a portal for her to reveal herself. And not only did she reveal herself, she was loud.
The more I ignored her, the more 'tough' I became. As if becoming more of the opposite would somehow polarise and shut down her energy. It did not. She simply became louder the more I did BJJ, and what she had to say was far more beautiful than my deep rooted fear of 'they won't accept or love me if I am a loser.'
The more I put myself inside experiences that challenged my shadow, the more light I generated for her.
I was always an over-achiever growing up. I got my first job when I was exactly 14 years and 9 months (the earliest age to commence employment here in Oz) and I excelled at everything I tried. No challenge was too much for me and I always believed I could be great.
This kind of thing is a really great way to be seen, heard and loved as a young kid. For me, it was how my parents showed love (through being proud and adoring). I always knew if I was striving and achieving, I would be loved.
And so being a loser wasn't an option. At least not to my mere baby brain. I attached my most basic human needs to doing well and doing it perfect (for another post).