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Success Story-Life is Beautiful Down There-Part 1

Success Story-Life is Beautiful Down There-Part 1
11 Sep 2015

I live in a beautiful country; Its official nickname is Paradise. Seychelles is one of the most beautiful Islands in the world. It is a beautiful set of granitic islands set in the middle of the turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean. These Islands are a world away from the modern world. Home to some of the most beautiful beaches, the Seychelles experience is one of unspoiled beauty with silver white beaches fringed with palm trees and secluded coves.

Having lived here a few years my experience with the sea had been limited to boats, snorkeling and generally leisure swimming in the crisp clear blue waters. While I love the sea and enjoy every experience I’ve had with it I could not help this nagging feeling that I should not go too far into the sea because THERE ARE SHARKS OUT THERE.  I therefore restricted my exploration of the sea to those parts and activities which I considered safe from these menacing creatures of the sea. Consider that I am the kind of person who is generally hungry to learn and explore so I decided to shake of my fears and step out of my comfort zone. This was the birth of my idea to take up my first DISCOVER SCUBA diving lesson.  Along the way I learnt key life lessons that I would like to share with you.

Ignore the chatter in your head

Now the first hurdle I had to overcome was right inside my head. The minute i thought about SCUBA the guy who lives inside my head sprung into action and was hell bent on convincing me that the minute I get into the sea a huge great white shark would be waiting for me and would have me for lunch that Sunday afternoon. Let me tell you this, when the mind is out of control it can drive you nuts. Besides causing distraction, it can also paralyze us into inaction or make us crazy. I struggled, I started pacing myself up and down the yard trying to argue with the guy in my head. I told him to shut up and let me experience this but he was incessant, he wouldn’t let go. I read every website that I could find on SCUBA diving that day and I was convinced it would be a great experience but the endless spew of discouragement kept coming.  It is true that this neurotic inner talking wastes a lot of energy and time. It took me a week to convince myself that I was going for it and everything was going to be ok. The breaking point in that week was when I remembered having read about meditation somewhere and how helpful it was to calming the mind. I scurried the internet looking for an easy guided meditation that resonated with my beliefs and one that would help me to calm down and slow down my wanton mind. Believe me it helped. The chatter slowed down after a few days of meditating for 30 minutes a day. The chatter didn’t stop completely but it was much less and much weaker but there were constant moments of relapse but nothing strong enough to stop me. Positive thoughts started coming. I began to be able to envision a great dive ahead. At the end of that week I was able to call the dive centre and booked my Discover SCUBA Diving lesson. Phew I did it finally.  I am now a believer that the only person that could be called a failure is that person who tries to succeed at nothing. Success does not lie in achievement; it lies in striving, reaching, attempting and overcoming challenges, including overcoming the chatter in your head.

Preparation is Key

The divemaster, Leo was his name, advised me that it was important for me to arrive at the dive center an hour before time so that he could take me through the theoretical part of learning to dive.  I excitedly complied albeit with a menacing thought still stuck in my mind that I was about to do the dumbest thing in the world. The lesson was quite informative as Leo took me through the paces. He taught me about the equipment commonly known as SCUBA Gear, that is, the equipment that enables people to visit the underwater world by making it possible to breathe, see and move comfortably while below the surface. It was quite an experience to learn about the regulators, the importance of the wet-suit, the SCUBA tank, the power of the fins, mask, snorkel, the pressure gauge and much more. It was an hour compressed with so much information that I needed in order to be mentally comfortable to take the dive.  Of all the things he taught me this one thing he taught me and pleaded with me to remember even if I forgot everything else. As you go down you will feel pressure in your ears. This is because when a diver makes a descent, the increasing water pressure compresses the air in this space in the middle of the ears, causing a squeezing feeling. Equalizing this pressure by holding your nose and blowing out lightly is a life saver. This extra air compensates for the compression and results in a comfortable dive. Failure could lead to an injury called Barotrauma. This almost triggered my overactive chatter again but I stayed focused and listened carefully as Leo expertly detailed the way to equalize the air. After my hour was over I was equipped with enough information and the one most important lesson and I was ready to try out.

It is as such in our lives, getting oneself prepared to face the challenges that they will face towards achieving their goals is one of the most important steps to be taken. The telephone man, Alexander Graham Bell, put it aptly when he said “Before anything else, preparation is key to success”. Some people surprisingly believe that being prepared is the sort of thing that is only reserved for fear mongers and doomsday enthusiasts. Nothing could be further from the truth. As SCUBA accurately teaches us, before you embark on a journey to achieve your goal acquire the knowledge and information necessary to equip for the task and therefore enhance your chances of success in achieving your goal. In fact it is at the point of interface between preparation and opportunity that success is defined. That is how Henry Hartman defined success:  “Success always comes when preparation meets opportunity”

Let me conclude this first by saying this.  The better prepared we are the larger opportunities we can handle

More to come in Part 2 as I relate to you the interesting world of SCUBA diving and the life lessons that I personally discovered through the world of SCUBA.

My name is Wellington and I seek to share strategies for successful living particularly strategies for mitigating the various risks that we face in life, strategies that would smoothen our journey through life and increase our chances of success. I hope you enjoy this article. Feel free to share with your friends.

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