Insight Mind Body Talk

Ep 7: The Psychology of Student Athletes with Kelly Kendricks

May 09, 2021 Jessica Warpula Schultz, LMFT Season 1 Episode 7
Insight Mind Body Talk
Ep 7: The Psychology of Student Athletes with Kelly Kendricks
Show Notes Transcript

Jess and her guest, Kelly Kendricks, have a conversation about the mental health of student athletes and the psychology of sports. While also looking at how the mind/body connection influences the athlete in all us. Kelly, a coach with 30 years of experience, discusses how families can support children and youth in developing their athletic potential. 

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Produced by Jessica Warpula Schultz 
Edited by Jessica Warpula Schultz

Music by Jason A. Schultz

Psychology of Student Athletes

[00:00:00] welcome to Insight Mind Body Talk, a body-based mental health podcast. We're your hosts, Jessica Warpula Schultz  and Jeanne Kolker. Whether you've tried everything to feel better and something is still missing or you've already discovered the wisdom of the body.  This podcast will encourage and support you in healing old wounds, strengthening relationships, and developing your inner potential- all by accessing the mind body connection.   

Please know, while we're excited to share and grow together. This podcast is not intended to be a substitute for mental health treatment. It doesn't replace the one-on-one relationship you have with a qualified healthcare professional and is not considered psychotherapy. 

Thanks Jess. And thank you for listening. Now, let's begin a conversation about what happens when we take an integrative approach to improving our wellbeing.  Hi there. Thanks for joining us today.

We have a very special guest. I'm very excited to talk about resources for student athletes and supporting our high school students in their athletic endeavors today with us is Kelly Kendricks. He is a therapist and service facilitator at insight counseling and wellness, 

but not only that, Kelly, you have 20 years of teaching experience. 30 years of coaching experience. And do you have coached basketball? Both boys and girls. And I hear you helped bring your teams to state three times and finals.  Well, Indeed,   fill us in, tell us how you got interested in working with student athletes and how this became a passion of yours. It actually all started with my mom who Roberta Corrine Baron Kendricks Smith.

And that is her full name. She was one of the. First female coaches in Wisconsin history to coach high school basketball. And I believe she was the first black female coach to coach fast pitch softball in high school. [00:02:00] So I got started really taking stats on the bench and then offering advice.

And then essentially just becoming an assistant coach. That was when I was 17. 

I, in fact, I got a letter in being a scorekeeper because they couldn't actually pay me as a student. But my mom was one of the first people inducted into the Wisconsin softball hall of fame. And so I grew up with her playing sports and going to tournaments all over the place. And it's funny because all I ever wanted to do was play sports.

I wanted to play baseball. I wanted to play basketball. I wanted to play football and growing up. I knew my mom as rabbit. That was her nickname. And so this is embarrassing, but I'll share. Yeah. Until I was a freshman in high school hand to God, I thought my mom's name was rabbit because that was her nickname.

And that's what everyone called her. I never heard anyone call my mom anything other than rabbit. And of course I called her mom because yeah. So my freshman year in high school, there was a baseball coach and he asked me, Oh, so you're the Roberta Kendricks says, son might know. I'm rabbit son. And he just looked at me like, no, you're Roberta Kendricks is.

And I know cause he was big and softball on in the state. And  and he's just most of the country on this side of the world knows your mom,  so of course I went home and I asked my mom, what's your name? She said, Roberta,

that's so sweet. I think that is so sweet. And what a great nickname. I love that rabbit. I got the nickname because when she plays softball, she played shortstop. And of course you get into the hall of fame, then you probably were pretty good. And she had a habit of whenever she picked up ground ball, she would hop before throwing it to first.

So they started calling her rabbit. Wow. What a legacy? What a [00:04:00] way to come into this world of, movement and mind, body. That's amazing. And it's, it runs in my family. So my dad was an athlete. He played high school basketball as well. And baseball. I have a cousin who is playing professional basketball right now in Europe.

Oh, wow. If you've heard my name Kendricks, you're probably wondering, Hey, is there any chance that he's related to Lance Kendricks we used to play tight end for the Rams and the Packers and briefly what the chargers and the Patriots. Yeah. He's my first cousin. So tat are brothers all right. It's in the DNA.

It's official.  So I've always been working with student athletes.

And so it's just been something that I started. I'm like, I love doing this Oh, wow. I'm so glad you're here. I was preparing for this episode and I didn't realize there are over 8 million student athletes in the United States.  I was  really blown away by the amount of people who spend their time  have passion, the discipline, the courage, it takes the leadership and the community that's created for these student athletes.  Let's get into it. What we're going to talk about today is we're going to go over just how to help students find the sport.

They're interested in giving some parent education on how parents  guardians or families can better support their student athletes.  We're also going to talk about mental health and mind, body connection that's so important. So let's begin starting with in your opinion, how we can help families support a student to find a sport that they're interested in.

Because there's so many options. So how do we begin thinking about that? I think for the most part, a lot of families will not necessarily push. Their child into a sport, but they'll make suggestions. I would like you to try baseball or I'd like you to try soccer. But there are a lot of other things that your child might be interested that in your mind might not be a sport, but could probably should be considered a sport.

It takes as much athleticism.  It's important to [00:06:00] it's okay. To push if that's what your child wants. Sure. If they're clearly not interested in a certain sport, then pushing it is never going to work.

It's never, yeah. Oh, I agree. When we, when you and I talked before we talked about the tri path versus the do path, can you explain that for our listeners? What that means? Yeah, absolutely. There's a, and it's to quote Yoda from Star Wars is that there's do or do not. There is no try. The try path is.

Yeah, it's okay for them to try a sport or to try a dance or to try some motional activity. And if they don't like it or they do like it, but  , this isn't something that I want to do as a world-class event, so to speak or a state event, that doesn't mean that they can't enjoy it, but to do it, that's where you're committing is this is something that I wanted do, and you'll know that your child will let you know, it won't be a secret.

It won't be a, if they're hemming and hawing, then it's something they may want to try. And if they don't like it, that's fine. Yeah. Yeah. So what, yeah. So what you're saying is it's really important to support <TAG> Yes. And trust that they know what's best for them and that when they find it you'll have to, Pull them by their arms and legs to get them to stop doing it, to get them to come in the house or to, slow down.

Yeah. Because now at that point, now you're at the dewpoint. You have to realize, okay. They want to push forward. How far and how much do they want to push forward? Because there are certain sports that take an immense amount of time and practice and training. And there are individual sports where they're out there on an Island all by themselves.

So if you're, if you're a golfer or if you play tennis, you're on your own. If you're a swimmer you're on your own. So these are things that you have to take into account, and it's a different mentality if [00:08:00] you're doing a solo sport than it is, if you're doing a team sport and how is it different, would you say mentality.

With a team sport is you have that family and that connection, and you can depend on other people. If you're playing tennis, it's you're out there, you're on your own. And you have to have that mental toughness that if you fall down, it's you, who has to pick you up. In fact, it is actually against the rules.

You'll get, you can be forfeited if you get outside help. So your coach can't coach it from the outside and it's completely different than in baseball and basketball. You can get help from your teammates. You can get help from your coach in tennis and golf in golf.  That's it, you're out there on your own.

And that takes a lot of mental toughness. Yeah. That's such a good point because when families are  trying to help their child choose which direction they want to go, I would assume then that personality temperament. Yes. Really plays a part in whether they should choose an individual sport or a team sport.

If you have someone that, you know, would grow  more in a  populated environment where they can turn to other people and build that sort of mental. Game I would think that they should do a team sport. Versus if you have someone maybe where they already enjoy solitude or they're pretty 

Internally driven towards something, they don't need much prompting. Maybe they would thrive with an individual sport. And there's some people who may struggle with anxiety, or they may struggle with social situations, but they get into an individual sport and they're fine. They like being able to rely on them.

They don't have the pressure from anyone else and they do absolutely find playing tennis or they played golf or they do swimming or track and field events.  You're part of a team, but you're not necessarily working together with anyone .

That's such a good point. I never even thought of that. That's a really good point. What about for depending [00:10:00] on age, any tips on. Developmental stage age of the child. One thing, a lot of course you probably know that there's T-ball leagues and mighty mite leads for just about every sport. That's a really good time to judge just how much your child wants to play in a particular sport.

When they're, I would say between the ages of three and seven. because the way those sports are played, if you've ever seen a soccer match, you know that with the adults and. Young adults it's spread out and everybody has their assignment, their area with three-year-olds all the way through seven year olds.

It's a cluster of about five or six kids, all trying to kick one ball and got a goalkeeper who's chasing butterflies. I have seen this before. My friend Molly coached a kindergarten team ones and it was so adorable. All it it was was trying to get them to kick in the same direction, because they were confused about why they couldn't just kick the ball to the closest goal versus their goal.

Exactly. At one of the younger teams that I coached once we score two goals that entire season, but we scored them against our goalkeeper because when we practice that's who they were used to practicing again. And during the game, I would try to convince them no. We want a score against the other go.

Okay. Good job, Jeff. Yeah. So in that age group, it's  introducing them to even the structure of, we go somewhere, we practice, we share, we wear jerseys, and then we show up on Saturday and we have community and things of that nature. What about more late elementary, middle school? What starts happening then?

  So that's when you really start to figure out what they're developing into and what they're really interested in. I think the best example is little league and you have the little league, whether it's literally baseball, softball, or hockey, you have a tendency to figure out right away.

This kid wants to do it. He's practicing all the time. He shows up at every game and there are some players that, Oh, I'm done just doing it for [00:12:00] fun. And there's nothing wrong with that. So it may just be, a casual experience for them, but there the others, and you think of people like LeBron James, who, is one of the few athletes to make it as a teenager into the NBA. He was playing from an early age with a mentality of, this is where I want to go. I've got goals. And when you're setting goals, you are basically announcing I have a plan of what I want to do in this sport.

I have chosen sport. And again, that's a mentality of dedication.  It's also really good to offer support to those who just want to do it for fun. Yeah, I agree. There's a lot of play in play is important. It's really important to our nervous system.

It's important to our mental health that we play and as adults, I think sometimes we forget. So yeah, yet offering children that opportunity to just get out and play and enjoy movement.  I think it can be really helpful to their mental health and their physical health. And this comes back to the do and try.

So if you're trying a sport and you're doing it for fun, Then it's also important to get them into the right area. And what I mean by that is you have like in high school, you'll have players that I'm playing basketball because I want to work towards getting a state championship. There's a huge difference because in, at the varsity level, that's what most teams are trying to do, but there's some athletes that just want to play.

I just want to have fun. So that might not be the locale for you to play. If you're not taking it as serious as everyone else, it might not be as enjoyable. You might not get as much playing time.  But there are absolutely other avenues that you can take on.  Really important for parents to realize and not pressure.

Even if they have a big interest in it to not pressure them into, having to play in high school. No, that's a really good point because they can find joy in movement outside of, the high school  arena and still stay [00:14:00] connected, still, enjoy and play. And yet maybe it doesn't come with the expectations and the pressure.

Yes. Speaking of which, let's talk a little bit about that. Let's talk about the experience of a high school athlete and in your opinion, the mentality of the mind body connection when you're playing high school athletics. And this is a another area where it separates between team and individual obviously at the high school ages and where.

For me, I started high school at 13, so I'll limit it from 13 to say 18, maybe late teens. And just the difference between the mentality of the 13 year old, an 18 year old. It's huge. It may not sound like it's huge, but the difference of five years in that, that's where it becomes. The thing for the coaches to be careful about, you have a huge effect on a player's mentality. You can push certain players in a certain way.

They need that push. They need  someone to tell them, you can do better. I expect better. There are other players that will get that reaction and they'll crumble because it's not the way to approach them. And so it becomes a very mental health aspect for coaches relating to their players to find a way to bring out the best in them.

That's where you have to have that mentality, 

Have to focus on your mental health, you have to focus on the match itself. And that can be very challenging for youths. , I heard Aaron Rogers recently speaking , you know, of athletes. I heard him talking about  how people often may try to push away their emotions when they're nervous,  feeling overwhelmed,  stressed and

what he tries to do is tries to be present with those emotions and accept those emotions, support himself through them and perform through them. Because the thing is, is that they're not going to go away. And we talk a lot about that on the podcast about accepting our authentic [00:16:00] reality what's happening in the present moment, nurturing  and supporting  is actually how we work through things and build resilience and tolerance to those distressing emotions.

I  thought it was really cool that he's now  spreading the word about really how to regulate and how to be with your emotions and still perform through them. So I think of another great quarterback in two situations where they're taking on leadership traits and they're being the sort of folks, honestly, to be like a therapy guide for their teammates.

A couple of years back the Packers had some struggles and it looked like they were, six and five and they were going to have to win out the rest of the season. And they were all these sports channels were talking about this and that. And Aaron Rogers stepped up and said, R E L a X relax.

And then when six straight games and end up in the NFC championship and people were like what just happened here? It's like he took the time to tell, tell his teammates. I, and I honestly think that's who he was talking to. He got all the sports people to calm down and he's telling his team, yeah, relax.

We can play together as a team. I'll lead. You follow me, we're going to get this done and they got it done. That's leadership. That's taking the account of your emotions of your teammates and helping them with that, letting them know I got you. Your support person. Let's them. And it's also teaching them emotional regulation and, even some polyvagal theory in there, right?

Our nervous system, when we feel under pressure, when we feel threatened is activated 

and so what he knows, I think and at least what we know is that when you're in ventral vagal, when you're feeling safe and calm and relaxed, you're in the front of your brain, and we have higher health outcomes and our bodies were more in flow and more in tune when we're in that state.

And we're starting [00:18:00] to do a lot more neurological work with athletes. And I love hearing about it  and that makes me think of the other example that I wanted to bring up, which is way back in I think April, 1989 and the 49ers were playing the Cincinnati Bengals in the super bowl and the Bengals had just taken the lead and there was very little time left and Joe Montana, who was another great leader.

This is a situation where, yeah, it's very emotional. People are tense. They're on the verge of having anxiety texts, because this is it. This is the biggest game and  Joe Montana, he looks off into the crowd and he tells us, he may say, there's John Candy. This John technique, look at that.

And they're all. Yeah, it is John candy and it's just wow, that's cool. All right. So let's go win this. You take that moment where people are just like, this is how he got the nickname, Joe. Cool. Most people in that situation. Not to call out poor Donovan McNabb, but in his game and a Subaru in the same situation he threw up in the huddle.

Oh yeah. That's it that's like the opposite of reaction of what can happen. .  It's so smart to point up into the crowd to someone that we all know and love,   and to see John candy, like immediately the nervous system probably settled, I would imagine, and regulated in a way that then yep.

Let's go back to it. Yeah, that's very wise. And sometimes I call it the sort of distraction technique and I've had players where again, assisting my mom coaching and soft, fast pitch softball in high school. And I was basically the pitching coach and we had a pitcher who was in a tough situation, had the bases loaded.

And my mom said go out there and talk to her like, sure. Okay. And so I go out there and I say, Hey, did you know there's penguins in South Africa? And she just looked at me like what, w what, w what does that have to do with any, seriously? So this colony of penguins that got lost off of Antarctica ended up in South [00:20:00] Africa.

And so now they migrate there all the time, and then I left. So now she's standing on the mound, trying to figure out I don't understand what that was about, but now she was   not thinking about the situation on the field. She just went out and did what she was supposed to do all the while thinking what, I don't understand what penguins have to do with this, and absolutely nothing to do with it, but you are so focused.

Or just doing your job so that you can come to the bench and asked me what I was talking about to get out of the situation. You didn't give up any runs and he hits and you struck out the last two batters. Agreed. So put her in the front of her brain activated that prefrontal cortex, slow down the amygdala, oh yeah.  We're talking a lot about, the, the icons out there. We've mentioned Aaron Rogers, we haven't yet mentioned people like me, Hamm ham, or Michael Jordan,  those top athletes.

How can we help support. Students with higher aspirations, right? What would you recommend if someone is seeing  a student who could take it to the next level and who wants to take it to the next level? 

There are a lot of athletes that are on that track where they think I'm going to be this, I'm going to be this success story. So supporting them in that is always a wonderful thing, but you should also recognize, realistic aspirations. The biggest thing is to offer them support if they change their mind. We have a lot of athletes.

Basketball is probably the best one. And you have a lot of athletes that have this desire to make it to the NBA or the WNBA. you want to help them say, okay, first steps first. So if these are the steps that you're going to need to do, you're going to need to really dedicate yourself.

You're gonna have to go to some camps like high school basketball. There's there's the rare situation where you're as good as Kobe Bryant or LeBron James or Darryl Dawkins or Kevin Garnett who came out of high school and went to the NBA. [00:22:00] So you, I would say so. Yeah, that's pretty rare. It is very rare.

And you want to give them that realistic goal that you're playing to try and to get into college. And there's nothing wrong with that. There's a lot of. High school athletes that, make it through college because they got a scholarship, which is wonderful. There's a realistic part that you have to present to anyone like that.

And one of the things, one of the risks that you may take is you don't want to douse their dreams. You want them to keep those dreams, but you want them to know what their realistic goal is and what it will take to get there each year. There are 60 players drafted into the NBA. There are about 20 million basketball players.

 You're right. College is a wonderful Avenue for movement for, the NCAA  really. Creating opportunity for a lot of people and allowing them to live in two parts of themselves that they wouldn't necessarily get to.

So really helping people thrive grow and develop leadership skills, hard work as well as develop the resiliency needed to take defeat in  life .  I was  reading about Dr. Benjamin Bloom. He suggests really helping frame for these students. One hard work is important, no matter what the end goal is to, there's always more to learn.

Yes. Always more to learn and three can the learning and the curiosity be fun. And that he said, that's the most important step is that the learning and the growing and the curiosity is fun. And that's why we're doing this, not just to have that outcome of making a specific team or making it to, being a professional athlete, but can we cultivate these other aspects of, who we are and grow through it and enjoy?

I think that's absolutely possible. I [00:24:00] think it's a lot easier. Maybe at the high school level. And maybe, and to an extent at the college level as well. I think those are really good places to not necessarily reach your peak, but a lot of college athletes aren't going to get to the NBA. They can get to the G league, which is like the minor leagues of basketball.

They can go and play in Europe. But again, you have, just a ton of athletes in college, but there's only a small amount of spaces available in whatever professional sport, whether it's hockey or baseball. Sure. And it's smaller for the WNBA because they have not quite as many teams as the NBA.

So getting that enjoyable experience in college and having the fun is absolutely integral. And it's one of the things that I think coaches who have a lot more success. Are the ones who have their players enjoying the game.   We're talking a lot about mental health in your opinion, being a student athlete is so much more than just playing a game. It's not just a game. How do we support them on their journey , student athletes are at times representative of the community's hopes and dreams, the school, possibly viewed as a little bit of a local celebrity.

And they're thinking about college and how this could be a path, which is very important to them and comes with a lot of pressure. Some of them are leaders on their teams, and that's even a different degree of expectation. how would you support a student athlete carrying the weight of this world?

I think the biggest thing most people need to do. speaking to two different levels. I'm starting with the high school level. Remember that they're kids and remember all the things that a human goes through from the ages of 13 to 18. And there's a lot of changes physically and [00:26:00] emotionally mentally that they're going through.

And as a fan, you want to obviously support your team, your players, your high school, but at the same time, you need to remember to kids. They make tons of mistakes, and it can be just overwhelming for them  this is an incredibly important for those gung ho parents that are really into.

The whole athletic scene and the support, but to remember they're still kids and they need that. Hey, it's okay. We'll get them next time. Speech need the, don't tear them down. It takes so much to build them up. It's incredibly easy to tear them down. I agree. I agree. Just honoring their reality, how important it is to them and cheering them on ,  you know, I've heard a lot about how difficult it is to manage relationships, training, nutrition, sleep, homework, family, life, thinking about college.

A lot of the high school athletes are, taking the act, preparing, doing all these different things and they're still just trying to be themselves. So really honoring that. And you didn't even mention any of the, just physiological changes that they're going through. Exactly. And how that affects them mentally.

Such a good point. Such a good point. You're right. Listening to their bodies. We were talking earlier about if student athletes get injured and how to support them in listening to their bodies, taking care of themselves. I mentioned I was watching Tik TOK, doing my research on, student athletes in high school.

And I saw this theme . A lot of them feel guilty for taking rest days or they feel like they're supposed to push through a possible injury. Get back sooner can you speak to that at all? Did you see that as coach and I [00:28:00] absolutely did. And it was actually one of my, as an assistant coach.

It was one of my duties to make sure the athlete did not put themselves at risk. When you are very dedicated and especially at the varsity level for just about every single sport when you're that dedicated. And again, you have that close knit connection. You're formed a family and you don't want to let them down.

If you're one of the best players on the team. And they generally need you to win most of their games, but your ankle is twisted, but you feel like I can put a little pressure on it. So it became my job to go, you know what? I'm going to wrap this ankle. And then I'm going to tell you whether or not you can play, because I'll be able to tell just as I'm wrapping it, if you grimace, you're done, go back out there.

I was able to, I had some athletic training, so I was able to judge, if a player had a concussion, just doing a mild concussion test and I'm doing the finger thing and your head rocked back, just trying to sack my finger. You're done for a couple of days. And that's not something that was always done when I was younger and started coaching because I've been coaching for 30 years.

So my last 10 years, that was a high priority. You think about a lot of the things that happen in the NFL with head injuries, each time a basketball player in our games fell and hit their head on the floor. They immediately had to come out and we had to do concussion protocols. That's not what they were called in protest.

What we did because the players want to go back. They want to play. Even if it's just, it may not even be like an important championship game or conference championship game, they want to play, they want to support their teammates and they don't want to let them down. And sometimes you have to be the bad guy and say, I can't put your health at risk.

I'm not going to do that.  And individually, even the psychological response to injury, if it's an injury that has a predictable path of rehab versus not   a twisted ankles may be very [00:30:00] different than if there's a concussion and how long until they can return to their activity.

And what does that look like?  I just imagine that perhaps it feels like a sign of weakness, or even if it's the first time experiencing that sort of difficulty, or they're really used to working through the pain, that it can be hard to slow down. Okay. Rest. Oh, absolutely. 

 And parents as well as they can also be instigators of, Hey, I know you're injured, but you need to play because this is important.

There'll be scalps there at the game. What good does it do and what they end up injuring themselves more? I just think To avoid burnout, we need to rest. We need to work hard on the days we're supposed to work hard and then we're allowed to rest and take care of ourself.

And that includes if there's an injury. And just keeping them involved with the team. Let's say it's a longer injury  demystifying, what can happen psychologically when you're injured, helping them notice any emotions that are coming up, helping them notice any difficulties.

 really encouraging them to get any support that they need from someone like you, if they're injured if they're struggling .  Yes, absolutely. I think I think one year, one of those years I was talking about when we were in the state championship.   All year long, we have been coming from behind and just mentally how  this team went from doubting themselves to a 13 game winning street that led them to the championship game of state.

Wow. The mentality change  

constant belief that we can do this, no matter what it is, we can do this. We can do it together. As a team is easily the most close knit family style team we have ever had. It was our motto and each cheer family team, everything was together 

and and this is a real private moment that we had in our locker room. We just talked about how much we loved each other. How much we love this season and no matter what, [00:32:00] yeah. We didn't get the gold ball, but we're all still champions in here and we always will be. And so that was so important. Yeah. .  All right, Kelly, let's close out this episode with talking about fear and how not just students, but really how all of us can honor the presence of fear without necessarily letting it influence our choices 

I think of a particular game where we had a very successful team and I was coaching the junior varsity helping out and all season long, we had done very well. We had a very good record, but we struggled against good teams. We would play all the teams that we were absolutely supposed to win against.

We won those games games that could go either way. We lost all those games. And there was again, a whole different mentality when we took on those teams. And it took me all seasons to figure out that not only did they have a fear of playing these teams, they had a fear of winning, and it's a difficult thing to, to work on, especially when you've only have one game left in the season and you recognize it too late.

So for those of you that want to recognize these symptoms It's where they have so much success that they don't know what to do when they don't have that success. They don't know where to go from there. And sometimes it doesn't matter what the coach says, and this is a mentality strength level where you can either, it's almost fight or flight.

Sure. Okay. Yeah, absolutely fleeing. They were just fleeing from the chance to win. They just wanted to get out of there. And we were playing our drivers in our last conference game and the winner was going to win the conference title. And I saw them in warmups where it just looked like they were nervous.

They were edgy. And so I brought them back in early and I just had this speech for them where I [00:34:00] said, I recognize what's going on and I'm sorry, I didn't see it sooner. And I don't know why, but. We struggle against good teams. And I think it's because you're afraid, whether it's the fear of winning, where there's a fear of losing, there's this fear that you have, that's keeping you from doing your best.

And so today what we're going to do is we're not going to have any fear. We're going to unite as a team, all of us together, we're going to do our best part because this is what I promise you. If you do your best, I don't care if we lose by 20 or win by one. If you give me your best, there's absolutely nothing to fear.

I have belief in you. I have confidence in you and I'm going to be okay, no matter what we do, as long as you give me your best, there's nothing for you to fear. Don't be afraid of them. Don't be afraid of you. And so . After a timeout after each break, the only thing we cheered and said was no fear after every single thing, no fear.

And directly after that game, I got a text from one of the players on the team and she was still pumped up. This is two hours. This is after the varsity game and she's on her way home. And she's still, I'm still pumped up from that speech. And it was years later where she was playing in college and she said, I wanted to give that speech to my team.

And I'm, I can't believe you remember that speech. I was like, just never forget that speech. It just made a huge difference in how I thought about myself. And it was funny because she actually ended up in that state, that last state game I told the head coach, put her in she's not scared.

She's too. She's never been here before. She's only a sophomore, so she doesn't even know what's going on. So just [00:36:00] put her in and tell her she, and she was just all I ended up just like you realize that this is the stakes in my final. There's 9,000 people here in the Colson are watching you and she's Oh, okay.  In the first round, she tied a state record for three pointers 

Because she didn't have any fear. And I think that was just a huge moment  and we won the game. Awesome. Yeah. But I appreciate what you're saying and that the idea of when we. When we act from what brings us joy.

And when we act from a place of trying our best  being present  regardless of the outcome, it can be very freeing.  If you follow what's in your heart, how can you ever regret it? that's At least what it reminds me of is that when you say, when you go out there and you play from your heart and you give it your all, what is there really to fear at the end of the day, because 

you were true to yourself and at the end of the day, you'll look back in 20 years, 30 years. And you'll remember how you felt about who you were, not what the score. And I relate that to some adults who struggle with anxiety or fears of what other people think of them.

And I will always tell them that. Especially depending on their age, it's like you haven't reached that point in life yet where you just look in the mirror and go, why am I worried about what they think?  I'm okay with me I'm going to do this. And when you hit that point, it's just, as you said, it's incredibly freeing because then you can sure. I heard what you said. It doesn't matter to me, but thank you for your advice.

And I'm going to do it my way. I've got my support. I've got the support of people who care about me. .   You're right. That's a really important skill to develop.


How do I say it even, I don't even know, but I agree  if you can learn that skill as a high schooler, as a college aged person and incorporate that into your life at 1619, think of what that can [00:38:00] do for you as you navigate all the different challenges.

Yeah. Yeah. Kelly, it has been great. Thank you so much for being here and for opening your experience to us and sharing what you've learned. I'm sure this will benefit families high school athletes college athletes and really all of us, right.  the philosophies we talked about, the psychology behind elevate can be transferred into jobs, relationships, life  in any capacity.

Yeah. Thanks for having me. I appreciate it. Yeah. Thank you. 

 As, and I wrap up today's episode, I just want to let you know about the week ahead. We're going to be talking about adults, living with ADHD with clinical psychologists, Lynn Hyland. We'll explore the common mind-body experiences we'll talk skills, we'll talk tools to help manage ADHD symptoms  it's a relevant episode for any person living with ADHD, as well as their loved ones, or really someone interested in learning more about how the brain influences mental health.

I hope to see you then.

 Thank you again for joining us on Insight Mind Body Talk, we hope today's episode was empowering and supported you in strengthening your mind-body connection  please join us again next week As we continue to explore integrative approaches to wellbeing until then, take care.