Extreme Abilities

You're only as limited as you allow yourself to be


Adaptive Surfer, motivator, pioneer and differently abled trendsetter, 


In this blog, Extreme Abilities CEO and  T8 complete paraplegic shares his view of the world from the perspective of living life in a wheelchair, paralyzed from his chest down. Follow Dries Millard and read his exclusive blog on how exactly someone who is paralyzed can be independent and active like he is.


What is Fear?

What is fear? I ask myself that on a daily basis. What am I afraid of? It varies on a good day to be honest. But if someone asks me what scares me most, I’d probably say spiders. Let’s face it, those critters are scary. Eight eyes, poisonous  fangs, ability to defy gravity, walk on water, ninja level jumping and climbing and the most tenacious ability of them all, the casting of webs. It’s very relevant to be scared of spiders. They can kill you… in your sleep. I seriously don’t like spiders for exactly that reason. One might bite me and I won’t even feel it. I’d just fall asleep and not wake up. When I see a spider I’m not necessarily scared of that spider right there and then, I realised that I’m actually scared of dying. The fear of death. It’s when I shake out a t-shirt I’m about to put on and one of those dark ninjas falls out on to the floor. I almost put that t-shirt on. That’s when I get that icy cold stroke of fear followed by immediate relief. I’m not dead yet. I could’ve been, but I’m not. 

My fears vary from day to day as there are many things that may result in my imminent death. That is your only guarantee in life. You only have the one, for an undisclosed period of time. So for me, my fears motivate me to prolong that period of time. And while I’m prolonging it, I also try and make the best of my experience during it. Funny as time is infinite,  we only get to experience a small portion of it. Sadly, another infinite thing is human stupidity. Einstein said it himself, “There are two things in this world that are infinite, time and human stupidity”. And it’s true, we are stupid. Our social constructs flourishes on that one rule. People are stupid; we will believe a lie either because we are afraid that it is true, or we want to believe that it is true. So my fear is that I might fear something that would prevent me from having good experiences in life. Example, the fear of sharks. If I was afraid to be eaten by a shark, I probably never would’ve discovered the stoke of surfing. A silly fear that could have prevented me from discovering myself and that one thing which defines who I am,  and that is surfing. It’s actually funny when you look at the fear of sharks from this perspective: We eat sharks. Shark fin soup is a sought after delicacy that has the shark population dwindling. We kill sharks in by catch.  We kill sharks for trophies. Sharks kill less than 10 people annually worldwide. Just google “how many sharks gets killed each year” and then you think about  why you are scared of sharks. How many times have you actually seen a shark at the beach? I’m not scared of sharks. I am scared of driving however. Going full speed past another car heading straight your way also coming in at full speed and all that separates you is a line on the road. You are aware of what you are doing but the guy coming up ahead just dropped his cell phone and swerves right into you. Guess how many times that happen annually worldwide…? Yet we all drive every single day and take that risk. Now that’s human stupidity at its best for you.

So what is fear? For me it’s motivation. Fear of anything is the expectation of the worst possible outcome of a scenario. Your fears basically conduct your life. You are either willing to take the risk or you are not.  I’m afraid that my fears will prevent me from missing out on life. So I use my fears to motivate myself in to trying out new things, pushing my abilities to be able to do new things. I find strength in my fears that way. Unless it’s a spider.

ExtremeDries - 06:28 @ Adaptive Surfing | 7 comments


Weekend Surf Report

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Tune in to Radio Namakwaland every Friday just past 13:30 and listen to Dries Millard live, giving you the West Coast weekend surf report. Follow link for live online streaming.

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