I Was Scared of a Wooden Box

Let me tell you a story.  It’s a story about a girl and a box.  Sadly, not a shoe box.  Just a plain old wooden box, about 18 inches high.One day, the girl went to a Crossfit class.  The board read WOD: ... something, something... lateral box jumps... something, something.  Eek!  The girl already disliked box jumps, now she had to do them SIDEWAYS?

Well, she put her big girl pants on and jumped like hell (sideways) onto that box.  She did quite well at first, but as her legs grew tired, her jumps grew sketchy. 

And then... she fell. 

Not a graceful type of fall.  More of a straddle-the-box, bruise-all-four-sides-of-your –legs, land-flat-on-your-face kind of fall.   Her eyes were burning with tears; she was fighting hard to hold them back.  In her head, she screamed “Fuck that box!”; in her heart, she was defeated and embarrassed.

She walked away that day terrified of the box and she stayed that way for over a year. 

Sometimes, she’d get it in her head that she was over it.  She’d stand at the foot of a box and she’d think about jumping.  But her feet wouldn’t budge.  Fear’s grip was tight.

That girl was me.

I’m embarrassed to share this story.  I’m even more embarrassed that I was scared of a wooden box for over a year. 

But there’s no rhyme or reason to the things that terrify us.

There’s a happy ending to this story: I jumped on a box this weekend!  15 times to be exact. 

box jumps
box jumps

I beat the shit out of fear.

So, how’d I do it?

First, I made the decision that I was going to jump (literally). 

Second, I gave myself the time and space to do it.  A whole year in fact. I told myself, “I will do f’ing box jumps this year.” (those were my exact words)

Third, I declared it publicly.  I wrote it as a goal on the wall at the gym.   

Fourth, I got fired up.  Sometimes, I’d watch other women at the gym doing box jumps and I’d tell myself, “If she can do it, I can do it.”  Somewhere deep down I knew I could.

Lastly, I got focused.  I turned off all the noise in my head (thanks meditation practice!), I found a spot right up against the wall, I only looked at what was straight in front of me.  And I jumped.  BOOM!  Feet on box.

Clearly, this isn’t really a story about me vs. box jumps.  This is a story about me vs. FEAR. 

It’s a lesson about how fears hold us back from achieving things that we are totally capable of doing. 

I could have jumped on that box a year ago, but my mind was holding me back. What is fear holding you back from?

Are you ready to punch fear in the face?  I dare you to declare your fear in the comments.