Welcome to Friday everyone! Sharing a smattering of pieces from Windermere’s 2020 VirtuCon this week. For those of you who joined, I hope you enjoyed the content as much as I did. We had a great turnout across the entire network and I sure appreciated the space to gather + reflect + grow; despite our virtual setting. Huge shout out to WRE Events, ProDev and Services in pulling this 2 day event off – nice pivot!
I had the opportunity to host the conversation with Yasmin Farooq, head University of Washington women’s rowing team coach. The interview flowed from this season – one that started with hope of a third NCAA sweep in four seasons (no other program has done it before) to a story of resilence. I took Coach Yaz back to March 12, 2020 11:17am when it all began to change and change quickly. I’ll take you to that morning too – Seattle Times article, “Their season was swept away by the coronavirus outbreak, but the reigning NCAA champion UW women’s rowers remain unified.”
…fast forward to now, and let’s look back at how this team remained unified despite a normal season ending within hours and the challenges of 2020 took over.
“The whole theme for the year was, “Thank you,” Farooq said. “As in, when you get into the third 500 and your lungs and legs are on fire, you are grateful for the opportunity to be in there together. You’re going to find an extra gear for everyone around you.”
Coach Yaz went on to share with us several intentions that became the focus in their blueprint of the 2020 season – out of the boat and off the water. Let me take all of us inside of their locker room (figuratively speaking)…and then look inside our own locker rooms for the remaining of 2020 and beyond…
Bringing gratitude into next year because we know what it felt like to have a season taken away from us.
Growth mindset, staying in the present and rolling with the punches; trust ourselves to adapt to what’s going on.
Be in the now / love in the now; dedicating training to others and not focusing on outcome.
Make the days count instead of counting the days, be at peace with bad pieces.
Forgiveness: removing fear of expectations after a bad piece and give yourself love for the next piece.
Understand one another’s individual needs in addition to being one team.
How we carry ourselves through this time / training now brings value to the team later.
Removing others expectations / judgment of yourself in the workout.
Embracing every moment we get together in the future and not taking it for granted. Remembering how hard this is now to make those future moments appreciated.
Internal vs external focus. Reminding yourself that you are doing this because you want to. Shifting your long-term focus to each week.
Expectations to be fast vs enjoying and trusting the process.
Taking back control, knowing you are trusted and can decide what is best for you, and if you carry that into fall you can handle the hard tasks when they come.
Self-expectations and doing your work with joy to remove them.
I’m hopeful we are in the “third 500” of this race and yes my “lungs and legs are on fire” and yes – every day I am grateful “for the opportunity to be in [our boat] together“…
So I ask all of us – as we continue to stare resilience in it’s face – can we “find an extra gear for everyone around [us]?” Can you imagine if we did?
I’ll leave you with this. Here is a cool video that takes us inside the UW women’s varsity 8 at the 2019 NCAA’s. Inspirational and as Coach Yaz shared with me, reflects their training mindset to life on race day. Check out their final 250 on this race day – here.