Updated: Dec 22, 2021
Did you learn how to ride a bicycle when you were young?
If you recall, being able to balance on our bicycle requires developing a skill that take hours of practice, a strong determination to "get the hang of it", and probably a supportive teacher such as a relative or friend.
This supportive teacher would have demonstrated to us how to ride a bicycle, figure out with us what went wrong and how to improve whenever we lost our balance, encouraged us not to give up, and cheered with us when we finally "did it"!
But that's only the beginning and the road ahead is long.
To go the distance, we have to pedal on our own and put our balancing skills to the test as we avoid obstacles, turn at sharp corners or move over bumps along the road, etc.
After we have improved our balance and become stable on our bicycles, we learnt that sometimes we need to pedal harder such as when we cycle uphill; sometimes we need to loosen our brakes a little and enjoy the breeze as we go downhill. We can now travel at various speeds without losing our balance.
If minor accidents were to happen along the way, we might cry but we also picked ourselves up, reminding ourselves to learn from our mistakes, and practised how to maintain better control of our body position while riding.
Perhaps we would need to slow down, avoid cycling on wet pavements, or maybe it's time to explore new cycling paths, upgrade our bicycle, etc.
Thus, being able to balance and cycle comfortably and safely on our bicycles is important to us, whether we are new to cycling or have cycled a long time.
I was fortunate enough to have my father buy me a bicycle when I was 9 years old. After the first few lessons, I continued practising alone but kept bumping into things and injured my knee badly after I fell off my bicycle.
Eventually, I became better and could look up to enjoy the scenery when I cycled with my father and sister. I had even taught a few classmates to cycle during a field trip. It was a fun and memorable experience!
Fast forward 3 decades later, I'm now training my youngest child to confidently and safely cycle along with me as we explore the outdoors during the pandemic...
All the above starts with an intention, a desire or a goal, and it helps to have a supportive mentor/coach who can get you started off.
If you're facing challenges in life, I hope the above cycling analogy gives you courage and encouragement not to give up, and may you be able to find the right support and guidance to help you find your balance, overcome your obstacles or discover a new path in life!
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this post are the author's own, and do not constitute therapy or medical advice. Please seek professional help or immediate medical attention if you are experiencing overwhelming distress or suicidal thoughts.
About the Author
Hi, I'm Janet Gay and I'm a counsellor based in Singapore. I offer individual counselling and life coaching services to students, adults and mothers. I have worked with clients looking for help in self-development, stress, self-esteem, anxiety, depression and relationship issues.
If you wish to talk to someone without feeling judged, gain a deeper understanding of yourself and your issues, overcome your challenges and live a more fulfilling life, get in touch with me today.