We’re always challenging ourselves to push further and further, no matter the role in which we find ourselves. The most successful sports stars, for example, are those who don’t confine themselves to one training routine and continuously make time to incorporate other exercises and methods into their regime. They don’t limit themselves to one path, one procedure.
Alex Morgan is the striker on the US Women’s National Soccer Team and she uses yoga to improve her physical strength, ultimately advancing her soccer career. So far, she has scored 73 goals internationally, was a member of the team that won the 2015 Women’s World Cup as well as a leading lady on the squad that scored a gold medal in the 2012 Olympics.
Alex has been ranked by Time Magazine as the top-paid women’s soccer player and is the first female player to appear on the cover of a FIFA video game. She is more successful than most current professional soccer players, including her male counterparts.
In an interview with the Huffington Post, Alex credited yoga as crucial in her professional development. “I really do love yoga. Sometimes I forget myself, forget about what I need and [focus on] the calmness that I need at times,” Alex said, adding that she believes it is possible to take an hour out of each and every day, encouraging everyone to take time and take care.
Self-care is complicated and often time consuming. It is different for every person, simply because we all have a unique way of learning and growing. Many of us may not have been taught about the importance of “me-time,” whether that means taking the time to read a new book or trying a new bike trail. We’re always so go, go, go and live in a world where re-setting (napping, for instance) may be perceived as laziness. However, we all have the power to challenge ourselves and to work towards our goals, whatever they might be.
When we find time and put our personal wellbeing at the forefront of our success, we’re supporting our personal and professional development. We need to challenge ourselves to excel, while also challenging ourselves to find the time to make it all happen (even though our to-do lists are already never-ending, which can indeed add stress). “The time,” however, doesn’t have to translate into hours. We devote so many of our days to helping other people, no matter where we work, play or learn. Are we not worth an investment, too? Even if it’s just for a few moments?
Trying something new like yoga, in Alex’s case, may be beneficial to any path or plan. By taking the time to find out what works for you, you will have taken a step towards improving your personal development. Creating a strategy like this, though, does not come to fruition in the blink of an eye, and that’s something we too need to recognize. Beneficial first steps could include re-evaluating how time is spent on a weekly basis. Whether we take a few moments every morning to think about prioritizing or whether we designate an entire weekend to the feat, reflecting and refreshing will benefit overall productivity and efficiency. Realistic goal-setting and creating our very own definition of what success means are key to this puzzle.
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Indeed, there are times we must be status quo and passive, but there are other times where we need to find our inner Alex and lead the charge. If we’re not in control of our wellbeing, who is?
Feature photo by Amanda Urbanski Creative Photography.