Finding Serenity BEFORE learning to swim!

"Help me overcome my FEAR-BASED emotions with learning how to swim?”

Yesterday I was asked by one of our adults to help them overcome their fear-based emotions regarding learning how to swim.   They were paralyzed with fear due to a past trauma that occurred surrounding a near-drowning incident as a child. 

If fear is your primary emotional response when it comes to water, like the adult you just read about, you’re in the right place!  Make sure you read to the end for 2 simple action steps you can immediately start eliminating fear from learning to swim!

Let's jump right in and unpack:

Most of us have heard our parents or grandparents say, “This too shall pass” BUT for some reason, with learning how to swim with fear, it doesn’t always feel that way.  

Even at the thought of water or thinking about possibly learning how to swim, our bodies are flooded with hormones that scream: 


We are pushed into survival mode, our bodies tense up, our breath becomes shallow and quick, & our mind begins racing with these instinctual thoughts.   Fight or Flight has kicked in.

This response is for good reason: 

  1. We may have had a near-drowning earlier in life
  2. We may panic when we can’t touch the bottom of the pool
  3. We may choke on the water anytime we submerge our face

Fight or flight helps us SURVIVE.  


No matter how justified our emotions might have been to help us survive the past, we must question if these emotions continue to serve us.  Are we REALLY in danger when we think about a swimming pool?

To make matters slightly more challenging, avoiding the water only reinforces the EMOTIONS we are having.  When we avoid learning, we are inadvertently justifying & reinforcing the validity of the fear.   With each successive action that is NOT on the path towards learning how to swim, that fear response gets stronger and stronger.

The question then becomes: “How can we allow ourselves to acknowledge how we feel while NOT allowing it to steal a lifetime filled with incredible water memories [like going into the ocean, going snorkeling, boating, or a simple backyard swimming trip with our friends and family]?  

How do we break out of being confined by our minds?

The answer is MUCH simpler than you may think and occurs in 3 simple steps:

  • Breath work.
  • Meditation.
  • A self check in process that guides our progress in the water.

We call this process “SERENITY BEFORE SWIMMING”


The utilization of the SERENITY BEFORE SWIMMING process, allows us to quiet the mind, slow down our breathing, & relax our bodies.   Each one of these processes allows us to begin interacting with the water in a way where the water SUPPORTS us instead of us fighting AGAINST it.

For today’s article, I am going to stop here.  My goal is only to share with you the truth we have learned and create the space for you to walk through the door of possibility.  To take action.

The only way to let go is to truly connect WITH yourself and create space for the possibility of a different way of being.  

To know in our hearts that we CAN live a life that doesn’t revolve around fearing future pain in the water.

When we stop trying to control how we hurt, the pain will guide us right into the solutions of loving life more and needing less pain.  

To learn more about The SERENITY BEFORE SWIMMING process or if you are finally fed up with allowing fear to dictate the events you can and cannot do around water then make sure to do the following:

  1. Join us on Saturday mornings at 9:00 AM for our webinar on the SERENITY BEFORE SWIMMING process.  Every Saturday we go into greater detail on our techniques and offer a live Q&A so you can get any swimming question answered.  To register for our next webinar, (click that link to register!)
  2. Join our Facebook community of individuals who are just like you - high fear individuals who have decided to take action - Join the Facebook Group! 

Remember, you are always only a step or 2 away from leaving a path dictated by fear, and walking a path filled with water experiences so rewarding you have to experience it to appreciate.   

To becoming SwimAble,

Jim & Jeff Wood

SwimAble Adult Owners.


P.S. Did you know that you are not alone, over 100,000,000 adults in the United States cannot swim due to some level of fear.   Take action so we can start reducing that unacceptable number.