I’m in midtown Manhattan on Park Avenue in a sales meeting of the NFL headquarters. In the lobby is a giant display with a championship ring from every Super Bowl winner. It's fascinating to see how the rings have progressed throughout the years from reasonable to the size of a small apple. Everywhere you look are pictures of NFL greats and team logo's. The conference room featured a long table with intricate inlaid chrome details that made it look like the lines on a football field. I had accompanied our company CEO to pitch a partnership idea to the NFL. I was recently promoted to a national director role in a newly created position and this was an incredible way to kickstart the new gig. By all accounts a dream come true - I’m a huge football fan and my career was seemingly headed in a super exciting direction. …
… And I was MISERABLE.
As I sat through the meeting my mind kept wandering back to the same thought: ‘I have to get out of this job’
I played sports my whole life and from an exceptionally young age I fell in love with the off the field training aspect of sport. This deepened and developed into a love for fitness. Why I didn’t choose that as my path for education and my initial career could be its own post. I did know that at some point I was going to make a transition to fitness in some capacity. At that point in my career, I was on the clear path to take over as a VP for the most successful region of the company. I figured I’d get into the role, spend a handful of years squirreling away a nice nest egg and then get out while I was still relatively young and do something I’d really enjoy: Something in fitness. I am (was?) a planner. So I set a plan in motion. I began to accumulate certifications – several as a running coach and the real undertaking, earning my Strength & Conditioning certification. That way, when I was ready to make my move, I’d have some bona fides that carried a little weight.
That plan got blown up. We underwent a company-wide, full restructuring and the job I was planning on was no longer. My plan, the one that made endure years of no work/life balance, years of taking on extra roles and extra work, the plan that was going to pay off with ‘one day’ doing something I loved was gone.
What to do? At that point, Vos was budding and we felt Laura was really building something but we were by no means certain the business could support us both. I’m someone that avoided uncertainty at all costs. Both Laura and I are (were?) extremely risk adverse. If I were to join her at Vos we’d have no safety net. Something that petrified us both. Was there a way to know when the timing would be right? Was there a way to eliminate all the risk of taking this shot? No!
And that was the most important lesson and best lesson I ever learned. I was right to be scared but I was never right to let the fear of failure stop me from doing something. Sometimes you just have to go for it. If there is something you want to do or really want to try, do what you can to make it happen. You then have to give it a genuine try and your very best effort. There will be struggles, sometimes things won’t work but you can figure it out. You find a way to make it work. Each day you get things done and you keep moving forward. You have daily wins – big and small. You’ll then have milestones and reasons to celebrate. You only learn from the setbacks and you don’t allow them to stop you. It’s something I only learned through doing it. It’s something I wished I had learned decades earlier. But maybe I wasn’t ready. Maybe this lesson came along at the right time in my life. And I’m damn glad I finally did get to learn it. I’m so happy I get to do something that I love. I’m so happy I get to work side by side with the person I love. It’s an incredible situation and I realize how fortunate I am.
If there is something in your life – YES! I’m talking to you – that you’ve been thinking about doing and haven’t, please reach out to me. If there is something you want to do or want to try or have always dreamed of doing and feel to scared to give it a go, PLEASE reach out to me. Let’s have a conversation. That’s not scary. I promise. Let’s talk it through, let’s put it out in the universe and let’s make it happen!!