Where Does Your Wanderlust Take You? Elle: Part 4
There’s freedom from what others think once you get beyond the fear.
Typically, we censor ourselves in order to retain “their” approval. Well, I lost that censorship on this journey. It was stripped from me, through a series of events that began with risking rejection and publicly asking to go on a journey that was seemingly very ill-suited for me.
None of it made any sense. Go to a yoga festival. Wait outside for a movie I had no intention of seeing. Take the middle seat in the front row. And then jump at the chance to face a collage of fears I didn’t even know I had.
If you heed that kind of “inner assignment”, you can’t worry about what others think… not if you want to come back alive.
Instead, you have to really listen to YOU.
And there’s really no need to announce what you hear inside. Running home and bragging to everyone about your epiphany is not the point. What’s more important is to simply heed what you hear. It leads us to freedom.
There is power in being free. I’ll never forget the day I rode those first 60 kilometers. I pulled up near the Ganga River next to the beautiful women who accompanied the other riders. Like an action figure, I jumped off my bike and ran over with no worries about being fast or as good as the guys. I had tapped into a new level of me, and I loved sharing that empowering moment with those fellow riders.
There is innocence in being free.
At Anand’s orphanage, I couldn’t help marveling at the children. At how fully they expressed themselves. Yes, they were all living in the same place with the same “unfortunate” circumstances, but they were not bound by a need to fit in. It struck me: what’s the point of being an adult with a lot of stuff if we’re all fighting to be the same?
There is passion in being free. I didn’t even know what the word Sadhu meant the day we came across a cave where one lived. For years, I secretly struggled with balancing my love of fashion and my deep love affair with the spirit world. In America, or maybe just in my mind, I always felt pressure to abandon one in order to embrace the other. But this beautifully adorned man who lived alone in the high Himalayas proved to me that it’s not about anyone else and that I can indeed have both. Freedom is NOT about excluding things.
So, did all of these lessons come to me in one glorious revelation? Oh no, quite the contrary. Finding my way to freedom took 30 days, many tears, and even stepping on a few toes (which Anand promptly brought to my attention). I listened. But even the apologies I had to make within the group added to my freedom.
Only fear subtracts from who you are and how far your journey goes. Choose the power of freedom instead.
What’s next for Elle? Find out here in the Cover Story of Las Vegas Woman Magazine.
~ Elle Swan is a yogi just like you, who came to Wanderlust and had a transformational experience that set her on a whole new journey. When she is not getting outside of her comfort zone by traveling to foriegn lands to ride motorcycles on epic adventures, she is a life coach and speaks all over the world teaching the benefits of rising above mediocre living. Her story and strategies have been featured on ABC, FOX, NBC, and PBS and in The Wall Street Journal. She is the author of several books including “Elle-evate: Change Your Life in 60 seconds or Less!” Learn more about her on her website and follow her adventures on Facebook, here.
~ 'The Highest Pass' has won several awards, including Best Documentary at the Naples Film Festival, and is available to view on iTunes here. The sequel, 'The Four Peaks of Freedom' (featuring our guest blogger) is 5-part TV mini-series coming in late 2013. For updates on this program, please sign up for their mailing list on their website and follow the Facebook page here.
If you'd like to go on a journey with "The Highest Pass" guide, Anand Mehrotra, you can now do it without leaving your house! You can sign up for a 7 week on-line course "Himalayan Wisdom for a Life Beyond Fear" by Anand Mehrotra: Featuring Seven Teachings from The Highest Pass. The online course features over 70 minutes of footage, including unseen footage from The Highest Pass and Four Peaks. The teachings are not-to-be-missed, so be sure to sign up for this incredibly valuable online offering.