Oops that's going to hurt. Won't it? Who hasn't at some point in their lives, "burnt their fingers?".... Not just figuratively, but literally too! The memory of that one episode generally teaches us a lesson for a lifetime, "Stay away from fire!" That same lesson came echoing back to me last week in South Africa, where I had gone to get myself certified in a very unique experiential methodology. There I was, standing with my eyes closed for a moment. In front of me big tongues of fire, some up to 10 feet high, licked menacingly. A strong wind continued to fan the fire. Everything around was awash with the crimson hues of the flames. Gradually, as we stood \u2013 almost in a trance \u2013 the flames bid adieu, leaving behind a 10 feet long bed of hot, glowing ember. Flashing at more than 1500\u00b0F, the embers held out a dire warning \u2013 \u201cKeep a safe distance!\u201dAll of a sudden, breaking my trance \u2013 I heard a voice "The Fire is open - you can walk now!"....Hey, wait a minute \u2013 did I hear that right? Human flesh is supposed to melt at 500\u00b0F isn't it?... And yet the way the invite was laid out, it almost sounded like someone saying, \u201cThe bar is open!\u201d Disbelief slowly gave way to incredulity\u2026. made way for awe, mellowed down to surprise \u2013 before finally transforming to belief, as I saw a stream of people in front of me doing the apparently impossible! Yes, I could perhaps do this too..... To cut a long story short - in the past few days at South Africa, I walked on fire... more than 120 times! Having said that, it is not as if with experience, this becomes gradually easier to do. Every walk, is a new walk - entirely different and entirely new each time. True, you build what seems like a relationship the very first time that you walk on fire. However, that relationship has to be renewed each and every time you make that sacred walk. The purity of the relationship depends on the strength of your belief. It is very uncanny \u2013 but if you believe the fire will burn you, it does. But amazingly, when you truly believe it will not \u2013 it does not! But how is this possible, your rational mind asks you.... Fire does not have intelligence \u2013 it just burns! So how does our faith play such a large role here? Walking on fire, has been an ancient practice. In many cultures, it was considered a \u201crite of passage\u201d as a test of an individual's strength and courage, or in religion as a test of one's faith. There is even reference to fire walking in the Bible: "When thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned." Fire walking is considered a wonderful example of mind-body connection. For those who care to dig deeper, fire walking is explainable in terms of basic physics and is not supernatural nor paranormal... One popular theory is The Leiden frost Principle. According to this, a layer of moisture between a source of heat and human skin will evaporate into vapour on contact and will temporarily protect the skin from burning. This is as long as one walks briskly along the burning ember. However, should your faith be weak \u2013 making you dilly-dally, the fire will burn you for sure! Source: Flickr Walking on fire is hence clearly a classic example of the mind-body connection. The many holy books that humanity has inherited, all state a single truth: \u201cIf you can believe, everything is possible for he who believes\u201d. Walking on fire \u2013 challenges you to overcome all your conventional thoughts, fears and limitations. Think about it \u2013 how much more powerfully could you live every single day of your lives, if you truly believed you had no limitations? Go ahead, try this for a minute \u2013 shut your eyes and think about all the things that hold you back from achieving your potential \u2013 everything that limits you. Now, lets continue with the mind exercise \u2013 just imagine that you have the power of wiping away all those limitations. What do you now see yourself achieving?.....We often surprise ourselves as humans, when we stop believing in our own limitations. For years, people believed no human could run a mile in less than 4 minutes. It took one man, Roger Bannister to break that glass ceiling\u2026. Soon many others broke that same record too. When you walk on fire, you have given yourself the best gift of your life. You have given yourself the gift of faith and belief in yourself. Belief that, as Adidas puts it in their memorable ad \u2013 Impossible is Nothing. It is not the fire, but this faith that empowers you! Source: Flickr Personally for me, that one week in South Africa busted many of my lifelong beliefs. Beliefs that we generally hold as the truth without questioning them. Beliefs that said: \tFire always burns \tAn iron rod cannot be bent using the soft skin at the throat \tNo reasonable man can pass a needle through the hand without extreme pain \tWe can't walk on broken pieces of glass without hurting ourselves As these myths were busted, the mind naturally drifted to all my other limiting beliefs \u2013 things that were engraved in my mind from a lifetime of conditioning. Knowingly or unknowingly, all of us set boundaries for ourselves in our lives \u2013 in the form of limiting beliefs. These are usually in all aspects of our lives \u2013 our financial goals, our career goals, our health goals, our relationship goals..... What would happen if a whole team was energized and challenged in a similar way? What would that do to not just the team \u2013 but the whole organization? Fire walking as an experiential tool \u2013 has the potential to shake up your subconscious mind, to never settle for anything ordinary. Go on.... Challenge yourself and your team to walk on fire \u2013 and live a life extra-ordinary!