While vacationing in Cabo San Lucas with my grown children and their spouses, my kids decided that we should rent four-wheel, all-terrain vehicles. We would ride across the sand dunes on the ATVs and see the lighthouse as well as watch the sunset. The children rented ATVs for everyone with a hired guide and insisted that we all go, including me!
I have to confess, I am more of a reading-by-the-pool type of person. I do not ride motorcycles and my children's assurances that an ATV has four wheels instead of two did little to soothe my fears.
I told them, "I don't think I want to go. I've heard about accidents on those four-wheelers and they just don't seem safe." However, all my protests were in vain; my kids were determined that I go and I finally agreed.
If you have ever ridden a four-wheeler, you know what it is like.
This was my first time ever riding one, so it was a big deal to me! An ATV has five gears that I had to learn how to shift. It was confusing and even frightening at first. I lagged considerably behind the big group, and my oldest son, John, had to keep returning to the back of the convoy to urge me on, "Hurry up, Mom. You're holding up the whole group. Put on the gas!"
When we reached our destination, I put the vehicle in park and told my kids, "You all go on ahead. I'll just wait up here at the top for you. I think right here is a good place to watch the sunset." Mat, my youngest son, rode up to me and told me that they could not go on ahead because it was another hour of riding.
"We won't leave you here. So, are you going to let fear run your life? Just take a baby step. Affirm," Mat said.
I had to laugh because my son was reminding me of everything I had taught him so he'd overcome his own fears. Although my knuckles were white and there was nothing I wanted to do less, I finally whispered reluctantly, "Okay."
When we reached the sand dunes, instead of the hard, bumpy road I'd adapted to, the terrain became sandy and soft.
This new landscape required me to learn some new driving skills. I kept getting stuck and I was the only one who seemed to be having this problem. I rode the sand dunes down to the bottom but then lost my momentum and came to a stop.
The rest of the group was able to ride easily up and down the dunes but whenever I tried, I slipped backwards. This was not so much frightening as frustrating.
Finally, it was time to leave and all my children were cheering me on from the beach. "You can do it, Mom! You can get that bike up these dunes!"
Unfortunately, I could not. After my fourth or fifth try, my son-in-law, Jorge, came to the rescue. He leaned forward and whispered to me, "Mama, you have power you are not using. Take your foot off the brake!"
At that moment, I realized that every time I had tried to go up the hill, I was unconsciously putting my foot on the brake.
I was giving the machine plenty of throttle, but the back wheel just spun and dug in the sand. I hadn't realized I was putting on the brake at the same time. No wonder I wasn't moving!
During the next few minutes, Jorge had to tell me twice more that I still had my foot on the brake. I was doing it without my consciously realizing it. Eventually, I absorbed what he was saying. "Mama, you have power you're not using. Take your foot off the brake."
Finally, I did.
Once I took my foot off the brake and eased off my fear, I found I could climb any hill I wanted to, easily. I started to have fun exploring the beauty around me from the lighthouse to the beach. I was even able to keep up with the group, and it was a thrilling experience!
The lesson I learned that day has stayed with me.
Unconsciously, we may have a foot on the brake of the power that we have been given to create the life of our dreams.
We have a foot on the brake of our creativity.
We have a foot on the brake of our power.
We have a foot on the brake of our potential.
Let today be the day you begin to practice what it feels like to live life calling on the full power available to you. The power speaks to you through your intuition.
For a moment, even though you may have no idea of what it really could mean, just be willing to consider that you have power that you are not using!
Take your foot off the brakes, and see how far your dreams carry you.