The Nature Fix: How do I overcome a paralyzing fear?

The Nature Fix

The quest to share your partner's passion, even when it terrifies you

Dear Out There,

I have a question about fear and water.

About two summers ago, I went whitewater rafting on the Poudre River with my husband and a friend, in a small raft called the Mini-Me. I'd been rafting quite a few times, but never in this small a boat, on the Poudre. I've fallen out of bigger boats on desert rivers and done fine. I've even pulled people back into the boat, who have fallen out in the Poudre. But up until that day, I had never fallen into the Poudre.

We were having a good time, and then our boat hit a rock, and my friend and I toppled into the river. My partner stayed in the boat. I was shocked by the cold river and how terrified I was. I felt paralyzed, even though I used to be a life guard and rescue people. It was so different than other rivers I had fallen into.

My friend and I got back into the boat, and my husband soon started yelling paddle commands at us, because we were coming up on another Class IV rapid. After thinking, "Gee, I'm glad we fell out of the boat; that will never happen again," we fell out again. This time I couldn't see my friend, and I was afraid something had happened to her. But in the end, we were on either side of a cliff where we'd gotten ashore. 

I haven't rafted since then. Rafting is really important to my partner - so important it was in his wedding vows. I'm wondering if you have any tips for me on overcoming a scary water experience like this. I want to raft again, and we do have a rafting trip planned for later this summer, on a bigger desert river. But I would like to go on the nearby Poudre again, and have some strategies for being brave.

Thanks for any advice you can give me.

— Over My Head

Want to ask Angus and Becky a question? Just e-mail a voice memo with your question to willow@outtherepodcast.com. If you don't feel comfortable sending a voice memo, you can also e-mail us your question in written form. We can't wait to hear from you!




I wanted to love the things that he loved, because I loved him.
— Becky Jensen, Advice Columnist


One thing that helps is to remember that the fear I have isn’t always proportional to the danger that I’m actually in.
— Angus Chen, Advice Columnist

The Nature Fix: Should I suck it up, to take care of my family?

The Nature Fix - Just Tired.jpg

What to do when you're living a life you don't love, buried in responsibilities?

Dear Out There,

My brother moved away to Colorado 30 years ago and made that choice to live his life as he wanted. I, however, did not get that choice. Once he left, I had no choice. I must stay near my mom and make sure she is taken care of.
— Just Tired

What happens when you turn 59, you wake every morning, do the exact same things every day. The way you shave, shower, comb your hair, feed the cats, eat the same things every day for breakfast.

Drive to work, do the same job. Which you are locked into, by the way, because you cannot go anywhere else without taking a giant pay cut. You are tired of living in the state where you live and want to move north, somewhere, anywhere but Florida, where you have been since you were five years old.

However, you cannot because your mom is old and lives in Florida, your daughter also lives here and comes over for dinner every Sunday.

I just want to stand in the middle of a stream, waders on, with my fly rod in hand, and live out my last quarter. But I am about 5.5 years away from retirement. But even then, will I be able to live my dream with mom still living and daughter still single?

Or should I relegate myself to dying in a state that I cannot stomach to live in, just to please everyone else?

- Just Tired

 

Want to ask Angus and Becky a question? Just e-mail a voice memo with your question to willow@outtherepodcast.com. If you don't feel comfortable sending a voice memo, you can also e-mail us your question in written form. We can't wait to hear from you!

Introducing The Nature Fix

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Out There's new advice segment uses lessons from nature to solve your problems

Drumroll, please!

We're thrilled to be launching a new segment on Out There: an advice series called The Nature Fix.

Nature has the power to help us make sense out of our lives - particularly those parts of our lives that are messy and scary and overwhelming. The Nature Fix is designed to harness that healing power of nature, and help you navigate this crazy world we live in. Each month, we'll use wisdom from the outdoors to address your most pressing personal questions.

On this episode, we introduce our wonderful new advice columnists, Becky Jensen and Angus Chen. And we dive right into advice giving, with questions about career, happiness, success, and work-life balance.

 

This is Becky...

...and this is Angus.

 Becky Jensen is a writer, hiker, and mother from Fort COllins, Colorado.

Becky Jensen is a writer, hiker, and mother from Fort COllins, Colorado.

 Angus Chen is a reporter, surfer, and climber based in Brooklyn, NY.

Angus Chen is a reporter, surfer, and climber based in Brooklyn, NY.

 

Want to ask Angus and Becky a question? Here's how...

Got issues you're grappling with? Tell us about them! Email a voice memo with your question to willow@outtherepodcast.com. If you're not comfortable sending a voice memo, you can email us a written version of your question. 

Can't wait to hear from you!