That Olympic Feeling

 
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WhiRLwiNd weekend for this crew in the best possible way. Road tripped to Lake Placid for Bigs’ first travel hockey tournament.

There’s something about being back in an Olympic town that just gives me all the feels.

The flags. The rings. The energy, so palpable - still, nearly four decades later.

39 years actually. To the day. Of that Miracle on Ice.

It was twenty years later, as I settled into our section of the strategically arranged Athlete’s Village, that I began to understand the magnitude of the moment.

Of what it really meant to be a member of the United States Olympic Team.

To me. To my country back home. And to fellow Olympian’s from around the world.

I quickly realized it was a role that transcended sport.

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You can still feel the magic inside the walls of that 1980 rink, inside that tiny mountain town.

The Miracle on Ice and my aha moment driving into the Athlete’s Village are deeply connected by all that is being an Olympian.

Never former. Never past.

The process of becoming an Olympian revealed parts of me that may have stayed hidden otherwise, allowing me to tap into the greatness that’s inside of me. A greatness that’s inside all of us - our magic.

My experience as an Olympian has impacted how I see the world - and what’s possible. And, with that, it’s also affected how I journey through this wildly beautiful ride that is motherhood. Especially now that I’m a mother to littles who play sports.

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For all of us,

The Olympic journey started out as a far-fetched DREAM.

Some of us were told no way. Some of us were called selfish. Some of us were told we were crazy.

{Have you seen that video yet?!}

All of us faced self-doubt and fear. All of us faced challenges and struggle.

Parents. Teammates. Coaches. Financial stress. Playing time. Attention. Bad calls.

Though the details of our individual journeys varied, every.single.one of us had to navigate through hard things.

 
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I’ve learned a lot since then. And one of the biggest, most critical pieces I’ve taken into my parenting is that these four littles KNOW they are loved without conditions.

Which, for me, means the first question out of my mouth after every practice and game is,

“Did you have fun?”

That’s. It. No dissecting.

Fun doesn’t mean easy. Fun doesn’t mean free from hard.

Culturally, we’re up against a belief that hard is bad; that if something takes time + effort then we must not be good enough and/or it’s too much work. Something that can be exacerbated by the high-tech, fast-pace, snap-chatting, highlight-reeling that is social media: We only see the tip of the iceberg.

Fun and hard can coexist.

There’s actually a lot of joy to be derived in hard work. Especially the challenging, empowering, growth-centered kind of hard; the kind of hard FREE from shame.

If there’s no joy on the journey, we have to ask ourselves what’s driving us to continue.

Because, it’s far too dangerous to hinge conditions to our worthiness - and subscribe to the belief that ‘if I just get there, THEN I’ll be happy / content / whole.’

 
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IF after SeVeN hours of hockey games, she’s asking to go out and play pickup hockey on the lake, under the lights... I’ll take that as a yes.

I’m pretty sure she’s having fun.

My role as their mother isn’t to protect them from pain; or navigate the hard for them; or dissect their skills after a game; and it’s certainly not to tie conditions to their worthiness.

My role as their mother is to walk alongside of them + help them cultivate the skills they need - as a whole human.

My role as their mother is remind them that we see what we believe, not the other way around.

AND, remind them that they can do hard things. 👊

Because, they can.

And so can you.

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Friends!! On Monday, April 1st I’ll be linking arms with a new cohort of Rise Free Warriors, an 8-module online course infused with live coaching, with 4+ hours of video content, 8+ customized deep dive modules and access to our private community space with guest speakers.

The modules are packed with powerful tools to help you gain clarity around what it is your really want in your life, relationships and/or business; unearth limiting beliefs that are holding you back; expand your skill set so you can shift into aligned ACTION; and truly live free.

We’re ready to hold space for you as you take the leap - peel back all those layers and give yourself permission to be who you are.

To learn more, head over here. Not sure if it’s the best fit for you, schedule a free, discovery call and we can talk about options.

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Samantha Arsenault Livingstone is an Olympic Gold Medalist, high-performance coach and consultant, transformational speaker, educator and entrepreneur. She is the founder of Livingstone High Performance, LLC. and the Rise Free Academy - inspiring, empowering and equipping athletes, coaches and women who lead with the skills they need to cultivate high-performance - to achieve AND feel fulfilled along the way. 

In addition to private and group coaching, Samantha consults with teams and organizations on athlete wellness, Mindful Sport Performance Enhancement (MSPE), leadership, courage building, rising skills and creating high-performance environments. 

A mama of heart warrior and mama of twins, Samantha and her husband, Rob, live in the Berkshires with their four girls. To learn more about her offerings, go over to www.samanthalivingstone.com