You Are More than an Athlete: what can you do when you’re injured or another long-term commitment takes priority?

You are more than an athlete. Think about how many different roles you play in your life.

▪︎ Parent
▪︎ Sibling
▪︎ Family member
▪︎ Son/daughter
▪︎ Employer/employee
▪︎ Community member
▪︎ Friend
▪︎ Role model

You may closely identify as an athlete, but there will be times where we can’t exercise due to injury or participate in sports due to another long-term commitment. Rest or needing to care for an ill family member needs to take priority.

Transitioning when there is a big change can be extremely challenging, and to some, agonizing. We can experience feelings of loss, grief, depression, anxiety, uncertainty, and confusion.

If you’re going through a low point and you can’t exercise or participate in your sport, I can provide you with a few strategies to get through that period:

1. Focus on the importance of your other roles in life. Reflect on why those roles and relationships with other people matter to you. Think about those you care about and how they care about you. Continue to connect to others and do what you can in this period of time.

2. Make self-care a priority. When we go through trying times, even if we’re taking care of another person or a business/employees during that period, we must always take care of ourselves. Make sure your self-care is adequate.

3. Dig into your strengths. Our views and opinions of ourselves can change, this can especially happen when we’re facing injury because negative self-talk creeps in. “You’re a sucky runner.” “You should just give up.” “Why bother trying?” With this, we need to do the opposite and identify our strengths and what we’re good at. Think about times in roles and relationships where your strengths really shined. List the strengths that come to mind on a piece of paper as a reminder, and then, piece together where you can utilize those strengths in your current situation.

Of course, these are not the only ways to get through a rough patch. Practicing gratitude, “go with the flow,” savoring the little moments, working towards other meaningful goals, experiencing nature, and a few others, are helpful mood boosters.

Remember, you are more than an athlete. If you can’t run, exercise, or participate in your sport due to an injury or another commitment, there are things that you can do to help get you through that time. The three things mentioned in this article aren’t the only ways to help. If you’re struggling through a downtime similar to what I mentioned above and would like to talk about it, contact me. Let’s get through it together.

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