Monday, July 11, 2016

Any life changes can prove to be difficult.  Change is defined as doing something different and transition is the action of undergoing change.  I am learning that the more I can prepare for change in my life the smoother the transitions is.  In 2014 upon retiring from bobsled I was faced with an enormous amount of change.  I moved from my home in Colorado Springs.  I needed to find a new way to support myself.  Additionally, I encountered a huge shift in lifestyle change after being provided for by an Olympic Training Center.  Simple things like grocery shopping were completely overwhelming.  On top of everything I was dealing with the disappointment of missing the 2014 Olympic Team and faced with the challenges of trying to figure out what was next.  I was completely unprepared.  I was ready to move on from bobsled, but struggled daily with the face that it was not on my terms. 

The enormous amount of change I was experiencing seemed to compile and paralyze me from moving forward.  I tried to be brave every day to work towards an unknown goal.  Although my family couldn’t completely understand what I was going through they have been patient and loving with me as I’ve worked to figure myself out.  I was not pushed to move forward quicker, but was allowed time to grieve the loss of my life and gradually explore the overwhelming amount of future options. 

I have learned that along with preparing a plan, surrounding yourself with people who support you, not judge you and will love you unconditionally, helps the process.  I have been fortunate to have been able to use the past two years to explore different career options and narrow down what direction I want to go.  I think I have learned that I may never know exactly what I want to do, but it is important to be brave and dive into options.  I can still continue to explore and move in and out of jobs as I see fit. 

Soon I will be going through more major changes.  I am still nervous, but I feel significantly more prepared this time.  I have learned that I thrive in the routine that athletics provided me, so it is important for me to create a similar structure as I begin school in the fall.  I will be surrounded by my family support and I am more confident than I was a year ago.  Although change can be difficult, it can also be very fun and exciting depending the perspective you chose to take.  I know I will continue to be overwhelmed but utilizing the tools that made me a success in sports I am confident that I can achieve anything that I want to.