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Incredible Lessons On Overcoming Fear From a Blind Paralympic Skier

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By Phoebe McHugh, Legends Report Contributor

How we can learn from the determination and passion Millie Knight has to keep on skiing after two near-fatal accidents? 

 

Imagine skiing down a mountain at 70mph...

When all you can see is this...

 

Well, Millie Knight does just that, she is nineteen years old, partially blind and has won a silver medal along with her guide, Brett Wild, at PyeongChang 2018 Winter Paralympics. Racing down the mountain, Millie Knight hits speeds of up to 71mph. Her vision is only 5% and she is able to keep on track by following her guide's fluorescent orange jacket in front of her and through him communicating with her via a Bluetooth headset.

Knight's bravery is incredibly inspiring to all, however, her passion and determination to carry on is the greatest lesson we all can learn from. In January 2017 Millie experienced a terrible fall, her guide Brett explains to the BBC,

"I looked back and could tell instantly how bad it was. She was getting rag-dolled and there was blood all over the snow. She slid on the ice and it ripped her face."

A month after this fall, Knight had another skiing accident and this time it was much worse….

After winning the race, Millie failed to stop at the end of the run and crashed through the barriers, forcing her body to flip and land on her head. It took her six months to recover from the injury. The greatest recovery, she says, was to rebuild the confidence to compete again. She explains,

"Concussion has so many symptoms and each one takes a different approach to recover from - and time as well. And as one gets better, the others start to creep up again. I think the biggest thing is the confidence that was lost a little bit and the fear of crashing again."

How often have we felt like this in our own lives - suffered a setback that could be really damaging and then given up? How often does this happen when we break up with a partner? When we lose a job? When a business fails? Or, tragically when we suffer a death of a loved one? One thing successful people do is no matter what happens to them, if they want it badly enough, they eventually dust themselves off and get back up again.

So despite all this, Millie Knight’s ambition and willing mentality to carry on skiing enabled her to conquer all her doubts.

"Of course, there is a point where you think, 'why am I doing this if it is going to cause me injuries like this. Why am I doing this?' But I am doing it because I love it and I'm doing it because I have a talent in it and I want to do it. I definitely wouldn't ever quit."

Although she had a great knock of confidence and a push back in her ability to ski, Ms Knight has shown to the world that nothing should get in the way of doing the things you love.

Millie has a greater purpose to ski that is more powerful than any fear preventing her from carrying on. With her win in this year's Winter Paralympics in South Korea, it is clear Millie's fight against fear is paying off.

As you watch the video below, reflect on what fears and doubts you feel are holding you back in life? What do you deep down really want to do in your life but doubt that it will ever be possible? If you had the chance to stare fear in the face and overcome it, what would the fear be? Is is that "I’m not worthy enough?" "I don’t deserve everything I want in life," or that "I fear other people might judge me?" Whatever it is, we have all been there and still are there. The best way to overcome fear is to bring it out in the open, to talk about it, to hear others who have the same fears and to persevere together. If you’d like to discover more about how to do this and figure out what it is that will drive you like Millie Knight, talk to one of us using the contact form below…

Watch and read more about Millie Knight's incredible story in this interactive BBC article...

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