Post 2: The Added Value to Life

Post 2: The Added Value to Life

Being a part of the rugby community for as many years as I have been, has added a lot of value to my life. I have learned many valuable lessons in regard to who I am and how I conduct myself. Participating in a sport at its highest level can come with a lot of moving parts. Daily, I was working with a team consisting of twenty-two other females whom all had the same goal: to make a twelve-person roster, as well as full staff consisting of a head coach, assistant coaches, strength and conditioning coaches, physiotherapists, athletic trainers, sport analysts and sport psychologists. We all worked together towards a common goal, to win games. With so many people involved you can only imagine this could lead to a few conflicts along the road, since of course we are all human, we express different opinions, emotions, recollections and methods of doing things. Through this, we strived to make a healthy environment where we dealt with conflict, had uncomfortable conversations and moved forward from it. I didn’t recognize it at the time, but I do now, that I was developing skills that would help me in my post rugby career. I have become more apt to have an open conversation with someone and try to mitigate a negative situation as soon as it arises. 

Rugby on the world stage was also filled with a lot of different high-pressure situations, everything from practices that determined selections for the upcoming tour to playing at the Olympics for your country. Being exposed to these atmospheres at a young age has allowed me to establish strategies of how to stay calm under pressure. By feeling a sense confident in these positions, I was able to learn to relax, breathe and trust in my abilities. It wasn’t until I learned that my training was the thing that helped me thrive, all the behind the scene things that other people didn’t see. To be successful you have to develop a strong work ethic by always pushing yourself for more. This is a hard thing to do, to push beyond mental barriers and self-motivate yourself to give that extra little push, either at the end of a conditioning session, at home when you really want to eat an entire bag of chips or after a long day of training and all you want to do is lay on the couch and ignore your recovery. Acknowledging that I had done everything I possibly could have leading up to important events has transferred into my day to day life. I ask myself regularly “is this going to help me with my next goal or make me a better person tomorrow?”. It all comes down to preparation, from being at training early to be ready to hit the pitch right on time or getting an extra mobility session in to help you feel at your best and confident. 

There are many things I have learned from the community of rugby. Making decisions under pressure, reassessing situations and developing a new game plan, working with many others of like-minds or different-minded, analyze and critique myself, ask for help or feedback, and the list goes on. All of these skills have developed me into a well-rounded woman who enjoys a challenge and is determined to be the prepare myself and be the best I can be each day, even recognizing when I wasn’t at my best, owning up to it and moving forward (because we all have bad or off days).

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