Category Archives: Being EXTRAordinary

An Athlete’s Exit Game Plan: Three Essential Steps for Successful Transitions

Hanging out with Big-Al-Chelsey Former NFL Star

You hear business owners talking about having an exit plan. If you are an athlete in college or entering the Pros, it’s even more important for you to have one. Although you may have spent your entire life preparing to make the team and become the star athlete, the reality remains: it is not uncommon for an athlete to swiftly and unexpectedly get cut from the team through performance, financial decisions, or through injury.

Unfortunately, many teams seem to be interested in “what can you do for me today?” Nor are they generally focused or necessarily appreciative of what you have done for them in the past. What you embraced as a promising college or pro career can be immediately impacted by unexplainable struggles on the field or court, another player emerging that is hungrier or more talented than you… and of course, the dreaded injury that dwells in the back of every player’s mind during practice or live games.

Having an exit game plan for your career after sports gives you direction and helps you to prepare now for whatever your athletic future holds in store for you. Below are steps you can take now to ensure a successful transition for wherever you are in your life and career.

Three-Step Game Plan for Success

1. Take stock of your talents, gifts, and passions;
2. Cultivate your esteem and love of self as essential to success; and
3. Create your own destiny.

Talents, Gifts, and Passions:

It is likely you have dreamed all your life of making the Pros in your sport. What else makes you passionate about this kind of a life plan? Is it teaching and coaching other players, being a leader of your team, being the analytical specialist, or being able to make a difference in the world with your celebrity as the drawing card. Perhaps, one of the joys from your achievement and stardom is being able to influence the young and eager wide-eyed youth who look up to you—giving them hope and inspiration for a better quality of life—that they too can create their dreams.

In reality, it’s more than giving hope and fulfilling dreams. It is about making a true difference in someone’s life, starting with your own. Can you become a financial planner to reach other athletes? Do you desire to motivate others through corporate presentations or speaking and writing to help others reach their dreams?

Begin to make a list of your passions. Then make a list of the skills that would complement your passions and help you fulfill them. A word of caution: don’t let your critical, analytical self-talk you out of your highest dreams. You can do it, but the first step is getting clarity and honesty about your desires, skills, and talents. Whatever is deep in your heart, you can reach them.

Cultivate Self-Esteem and Love:

The lack of love and self-acceptance are two primary enemies that sabotage your success in life, relationships, and career. If you are self-critical, you talk yourself out of taking steps towards your goals. You may have used criticism to propel you to change your behaviors and skills for athletics. Yet, these put downs and harshness toward yourself can later lead to feelings of failure and not feeling good enough…and the deadly tendency to compare yourself to others. When you do compare yourself with others, it is all too easy to find those who are quicker, stronger, more skilled, smarter, etc. The natural result of these thoughts is that you begin to feel more inadequate, which then translates to diminished self-esteem, confidence, and performance.

You don’t have to beat yourself up! Instead, you are here to learn to be your best self by being your foremost supporter. When you encourage yourself—even through mistakes and shortcomings—you are learning the art of Conscious Loving™, the power of which is to give yourself the best intentions and allow your brain to support you as you make the best decisions for yourself. In contrast, when you start with yourself in showing unconditional love, you immediately lift your energy, spirit, and mental game—and almost magically, you achieve far more. Remember self-love and acceptance equate to healthy self-esteem.

Create Your Own Destiny:

As an athlete, you are in charge of your own destiny. You determined how much you practiced, strengthened and conditioned, the types of foods you ate, the coaches’ instructions you employed, and the lifestyle you lived to give yourself the best possible ways to physically, emotionally, and mentally thrive in your sport. However, if you are terminated from your sport through injury or displaced from your team, you might believe that you have few options.

Keep an open heart and mind; consider that every adversity and challenge can create an opportunity for you to grow even more—and thrive—if you can face and deal with each new situation. You remain in control as the conductor of your life. No one makes these decisions for you, and you certainly don’t need to ride the train as a victim of circumstances! You do not need to believe or feel the current situation you are in defines you. No! Each momentary setback is designed to help you create an even more impactful direction for your life. What lessons can you learn from your situation? How can you leverage the desire to create even better outcomes? For a hint, go back to step number two: leveraging your self-acceptance and love.

Know that when you truly love yourself, you choose beliefs, thoughts, and actions that are consistent with supporting yourself and your dreams and visions.

Know that you are not alone. Many others have experienced what you may be going through. First, look inward to ways you can give yourself support and affection. Then reach out to others for their support and guidance.

With the many players that I have spoken, those who are the most successful are the ones who started to transition outside their given sport while they were in it. Some started taking college courses in the off-season. Others started writing their thoughts and experiences for a book to capture their highlights and inspirations; they learned to be grateful for overcoming personal fears and struggles. Some started working with life coaches to get a “game plan” for an optimal life after their sport.

Don’t put your head in the sand; believing you’ll manage situations when they are dealt to you. This is a reactionary course of action and produces poor outcomes. Instead, begin to think, dream, formulate, and take action now—to create the life you truly envision and deserve.

Mamiko Odegard, Ph.D. specializes in working with athletes to assist in transitioning from their sport to find meaning and success in new possibilities and careers.

www.drmamiko.com

NFLPA and YOU3

If you are wondering what YOU3 is, you will be interested to know it is one of the underlying tenets of the programs I teach… the work I do as the leading authority on overcoming self-sabotage in love, relationships, and high-performance. It is the belief that we have three diametrically different kinds of love, which we must understand and manage. The first is the love we have for ourselves… the jumping off point of all other love we hope to experience.  Another deals with the relationships we have with friends, family, and professional peers and finally, the love we feel romantically.
As I connected with the various attendees and sought to develop relationships at this stellar, and unique event, I was blessed to join and communicate with amazing people:  Kim Sherlock Anderson, a former actor and now stand up comic and Larry Mallory, Board of Directors of the Fort Worth Police Athletic League, a 501C organization that provides youth a place to play sports, learn, and to become leaders in the community and my golfing partner, Joe Wesley, now a Safety manager in Houston. Clearly, these communications were in the second category of professional peers, but I could easily see how some of those would shift to more of a friend status over time – you just know when you really develop long-lasting relationships with others.
I thought of the YOU3 of romantic relationships as I met fabulous wives and partners such as Dr. Amy Lewis, A National Board Certified Accupuncturist and President Acupuncture Society of DC, Brooke Kalama, an actress, and speaker, Dr. Monica Hill, a couples and family therapist.  In another post, you can read about how a group of us had fun and camaraderie building a dog house and painting them to help raise funds for Forever Loved Pet Sanctuary.  All the while, my mind considered the wives and partners of the EXTRAordinary sports figures, knowing that without question they have been-and remain- the backbone of the players… they are the beautiful spirits who inspire athletes and participate in the ultimate game plan as they emotionally and physically support them.

As you can probably tell, there were many layers of connections at this event, and many memories started we will all carry forth to the next annual event! The concept of teamwork extends so far beyond the game!

NFLPA: John A. Amos

As a peak performance expert working to help athletes’ achieve their ultimate game plans, it was a pleasure indeed to connect with John A. Amos, Jr. at the recent NFLPA event. Talk about a person who has figured out being EXTRAordinary – John certainly has!
There is much to be said about John and his career, but all of that can be seen online through various media pieces. What fascinates me is his playing full out in life – not just in his sports. A part of me would like to interview this remarkable young man and inquire, “What was the mental/emotional connection for you between sociology studies, college football, social work, and Golden Gloves boxing?”
And then… there is John’s further life journey that included writing, television roles – some a comedic take on life, and others drama-based such as The District and the 1977 miniseries, Roots.  The list of his television roles is lengthy, and his work as writer and producer of Hailey’s Comet gained international acclaim – rounded out by stints on Broadway. and the release of an album of original country music songs. This EXTRAordinary performer has the distinction of winning more TV Land Awards than any other actor.
On a more personal level, we see John’s standards of performance extending to being a veteran of the 50th Armored Division of the New Jersey National Guard and Honorary Master Chief of the U.S. Coast Guard. At the end of the day, all in all, I feel honored and grateful to have met this impactful man – and look forward to seeing just how many more ways he can think of being EXTRAordinary!

Is World Class Performance In Your Sights for 2017?

The New Year is full of dreams and hope for a better future. The magic of the holidays seems to linger, making you feel that you can achieve anything that is in your heart and mind. This is the time of the year when you set new goals and examine how you get there. Using the power of your mind and emotions to help you reach your goals in the quickest amount of time encompasses the skills of Conscious Loving.

Do you find yourself setting goals of what you truly want to accomplish? Or are you driven by the need to please and to fit in with others’ expectations of how you should look, feel, think, and act? The suggestions below are different than the traditional behavioral methods to reach goals. These strategies employ honoring yourself and being honest about what you truly want to create for yourself.

You are EXTRAordinary and capable of EXTRAordinary results. Your goals that you set for yourself are chosen to empower, boost your esteem and confidence, and to succeed at a higher level. When I refer to “world class performance,” you don’t necessarily need to be an elite athlete. Instead, it is about the ways you show up in an effort, integrity, communication, the actions of treating yourself and others. Do you find yourself being critical and holding high expectations of yourself and others? Is that voice inside of your head continually making judgments and pressing for you to do even more…like that feeling of feeding that monster who cannot consume enough food.

Whatever your goals, you can get there faster and more successfully if you follow these action steps:

  1. Brainstorm all the goals you would like to achieve this year. These could be your goals for your physical well-being, emotional growth, spiritual closeness, enhanced relationships, heightened performance, career success, greater relaxation, and enjoying vacations. Perhaps it is an external goal such as winning a championship or achieving a milestone.
  2. Examine your list, determine your top three goals, and place them in order of priority. Rate them as to their level of importance and urgency to accomplish these goals. How committed are you reaching these on a scale of 0 to 10, with 10 being absolutely, undeniably committed? If you are not at an 8, 9, or 10 in your level of commitment toward working on your goals, then what’s getting in your way? Are these pervasive “should” goals, because you think that this is the right or acceptable thing to do? Are you coming from a place of deficiency or a place of love?
  3. Now create an action plan as to how you can reach your three goals. To successfully reach your goals, create short-term, moderate, and long-term goals. These smaller goals keep you motivated and focused because they are taken in tiny, daily actionable steps and allow you to feel good about your progress and encourage your efforts. For instance one of the most popular goals every year pertains to losing weight and exercising more. It’s easy to get distracted, and off track by that luscious looking pastry or hot comforting chicken pot pie when it’s cold outside. Then it’s back to feeling defeated or scolding yourself for not being disciplined. It’s also easy to consume what you want in the moment and justify starting “tomorrow,” resulting in you feeling guilty and dishonest. Instead, consider what is it about losing weight, getting into that specific size, or having a certain shape and physique that drives you. Is it really about your body shape, size, or weight? Or is it about being acceptable, fitting in, and being desired? If it is about your feeling different or inadequate, then commit to making the real changes within you to acknowledge and to feel you are irresistible to yourself and others. Allow yourself to stay in the moment and to learn how to emotionally support yourself with tenderness and acceptance no matter what, starting with realistic goals that you can achieve. The stakes can become harder as you graduate toward success.
  4. Make a list of consequences for your activities that take you toward your goals or prevent you from attaining your goals. Directly reward yourself generously with compliments and activities that encourage you to feel proud and fuel your successes. When you find yourself underperforming and feeling unmotivated, examine what holds you back and specifically how you may be sabotaging your efforts and your esteem. Then instead of punishing yourself or feeling like you’re failing, be the detective solving the case by working backward to identify and change actions and outcomes.
  5. Practice gratitude and celebrate your greatness every day. By continually being in the moment and consciously recognizing and appreciating the small miracles that are happening in your life, you change your energy, your thoughts, your feelings, and your outcomes. Gratitude is a gift you give yourself to rebalance and empower you even more.

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The Art of Connecting – YOU3™

Throughout our lives we have experiences in three distinctly different types of love and relationships, which I call YOU3:

  • Relationship with Ourselves
  • Relationship with Others (family, friends, and co-workers)
  • Relationship with Our Love Partner

ACT on Love™

The relatioIMG_0561nship with ourselves is the most sacred, serving as the foundation for how well we treat ourselves and others. If we are critical towards ourselves, we are also judgmental and harsh with others, especially those closest to us. The concept of ACT on Love™ encourages us to act now to show love to ourselves and others. By accepting and loving ourselves first, we enhance all other relationships and build immediate and lasting connections.

As a former psychologist, individual and couples therapist, and now as a love, relationship, and performance expert, I have worked with many of you who wanted to feel more secure about yourself and be more comfortable and enjoy deeper relationships with others, as well as knowing the skills to retain the passion and bliss of fresh loving relationships. By starting with yourself first to become your best version, you actually become irresistible in attracting individuals to you romantically, socially, professionally, and personally. Yes, we find ourselves being attracted to those whom we view as happy, confident, fun, warm, thoughtful, a good listener, able to sense and understand what we’re feeling and experiencing. These desirable qualities stem from feeling good about you, which is reflected in everything you do and say. Self-confidence equates to self-love, that warm, acceptance and nurturing you practice on yourself, leading you to heightened performance in your careers, in building relationships with others, and in the ways you show up in your roles and behaviors as an inspiring lover, partner, and parent.

Be the First

If you want someone to listen and understand your feelings, be the first one to listen, ask questions, and demonstrate that you hear the other’s emotions and the reasons behind them. If you want more love, be the first to show love in different ways such as compliments and recognition, by physical touching with hugs, holding hands, snuggling together, or massaging the back or feet. You create memorable experiences and a closer bonding when you use Conscious lovingin your words and actions.

Discover Others…

A friend of mine, Larry Benet, is known as the “Connector.” He encourages us to really tap into what a person is about-not just finding out one’s occupation, but what that person does for fun, and how he can help with another’s passions or success with current projects. Larry, like others, has learned the concept “give to get,” meaning whatever we want, give it to another first, and that gift of what we desire comes back to us.

One way to quickly connect is to have laughter and fun. Think of the best times you have experienced? What were you doing then? Many times it is engaging in fun, zany, lighthearted physical activities or it could be moments when you felt most loved and connected… and even thinking about those situations where you felt the most love will often bring a smile as you remember the closeness, affection, words and gestures. You can create these special moments now with anyone.

Many people have come to me because they wanted to have a smoother, closer relationship with a co-worker, teammate, friend, family, and of course a significant love partner. Even though the other party didn’t participate in coaching, relationships dramatically changed for the better, because the individual who became the best version of himself or herself, impacted all others and how others responded to them. When you are in a place of love where you fully accept and love yourself, you have the power to be a magnet for positive people and experiences.

Dr. Mamiko Odegard, a premier life coach and founder of ACT On Love is the author of Daily Affirmations for Love: 365 Days of Love in Thought and Action. She will quickly show you how to make changes in your life and your relationships through her customized 1:1 Individual and Couples Coaching, VIP Intensive Retreats and Concierge Programs. Start better connections now with all the people in your life, by calling 480-391-1184 for your personal consultation with Mamiko.

YOU3™: The Secret to Success in Love, Life, and Career

Team winning at bowlingDo you ever wish you had the formula for:

  • Attracting and maintaining deep relationships?
  • Being loved and cherished with a partner who is in love with you, adores you, remains passionate through the years with you and you likewise, are crazy in love with your lover?
  • Rising to the top of your career in business, in athletics, or in any area for your pursuit of happiness?

It’s easier than you think when you recognize and develop YOU3™. You actually have three types of relationships. Each one affects the other and you must maintain a balance, a synergy, if you will. When one part becomes misaligned, you experience a loss of focus in your performance and passion. Instead you are filled with self-doubt, insecurities, anxiety, sadness, mistrust, criticalness, jealousy, obsessions, impatience, judgment, and self-destructive behaviors.

So what exactly is YOU3™?

  • YOU1: The relationship with yourself. This relation is the core of esteem and success. This is the part of you that you can directly control through the choices you make in your beliefs, thoughts, feelings, and actions. Thus, the first YOU is the most sacred. When you honor your thoughts and feelings and act in the highest good, your byproduct is greater success in all areas of your life that is important to you. In order for you to practice “conscious loving™” you must develop your highest and best self. This means that you learn and consistently practice accepting, loving, and nurturing yourself. How many of you are really taught that in your home? Most grow up in families where the parents did the best they could, but your own parents often didn’t know how to love themselves or to show you love. You might have ended up feeling unimportant, unworthy, and not living up to their standards…and now you’ve inherited their legacy.Imagine what it would be like that no matter your experiences and where you started from, you could have a fresh nurturing and loving relationship with yourself. No more criticizing and second-guessing yourself about how you feel, what you did, or what you said to someone else. Instead you are filled with compassion for yourself to allow you to treat yourself tenderly and foster amazing results in the ways you show up in every area of your life.
  • YOU2: The relationship with others. This includes family, friends, acquaintances, co-workers, and teammates. The quality of the relationships you have with these people in your circle of influence can impact you on a daily basis. If you are not secure within yourself, then you can easily feel threatened, jealous, mistrusting, and sabotage yours and others’ successes. For instance, have you ever known someone who seemed to be brilliant and talented that innately skills and decisions seemed to come so easily, efficiently, and produced astounding results? You might then become secretive, withholding valuable information so this star performer wouldn’t look so shiny. If you were the supervisor for this person, you might feel so threatened that you would be afraid this person would take over your position. Therefore, you criticize unnecessarily and assign this person the junk tasks. Even worse, do you take credit when your subordinate is the one that actually made you look good? The whole organization or team suffers because you are not mentoring and not utilizing the greatest skills and resources. The final performance, the outcome gets “dumbed down,” leading to your brightest stars to leave.Wouldn’t you like to know exactly how you’d change your thoughts, feelings, and responses to others? Do you want to reveal and clarify your hidden beliefs and stumbling blocks that prevent you for achieving what you dream of? It’s not just about you and your relationship with yourself! It’s about the ways you relate effectively with others in loving, respectful, deeper communication and actions.
  • YOU3: The relationship with a special loving partner. Again, most don’t have role models of a truly deep, loving, and intimate relationship. This is not about sex. Instead it is about trusting your partner and feeling so comfortable that not only can you give and receive affection, but you can be yourself. It’s about letting your partner see into the deepest parts of you such as thoughts and feelings when you might be stressed or afraid, or even being angry with your mate. Conversely, it is about being vulnerable enough to proclaim and openly display how close and in love you are with another.Have you ever fantasized what life would be like with your perfect soul mate? You can feel your energies rising and feeling hopeful when you think about meeting “the one” or what life was like for you when you were dating, starting to fall in love, or even when you said “I do.” Even if your relationship has gone stale with little affection, lackluster superficial verbal and physical interactions, you can quickly turn your relationships around in a matter of days and weeks when you know the secrets of YOU3™.If you’re single, looking for a quality partner or you find yourself “settling” for mates that keep you unbalanced with lack of emotional and physical commitment and distance. If you find your partner seems to bring our the worst in you, the power of YOU3™ can help not only strengthen your core of self confidence, worthiness, and love, but teach you actual skills to bring the best in your relationship with specific tools to reboot your relationship to a fresh new beginning in letting go of anger, resentment, hurt, and keys to forgiving and turning on massive passion, love, and intimacy.

You’ve heard the saying “behind every good man is a woman.” Success does start at home! Success begins when you recognize, claim, and embrace your greatness. This doesn’t mean you have to be perfect…that completely unreachable. Instead it means that you learn to accept the totality of who you are with your flaws and weaknesses as well as your uniqueness and stress. There is a warrior inside all, regardless of male or female that wants to take control and feel powerful over your own life. You can do it when you accept your worthiness, your greatness. Indeed you are EXTRAordinary! No one in this world is exactly like you; not even identical twins. You each have your own personalities, differences in the way you handle situations, the way you communicate, and the differences in the ways you relate to yourself and others in your life. No matter your skill set, no matter your background, it’s not where you started or came from. Rather it is where you are right now and your capacity to grow and become your own MVP, to yourself, others, and to your special intimate loved one.

ACT on Love now™ and let’s start your journey to greatness.

Call me at (480) 391-1184 to schedule a complimentary discovery consultation or email me at Success@drmamiko.com with your PHONE NUMBER and best times to reach you.