#41 Mastering Your Fate & Captaining Your Soul with Carly WOPAT
March 24, 2016
Athlete Case Study: Professional volleyball player who graduated from Stanford University, plays for the USA National Team, and currently plays in Ankara, Turkey
In this athlete case study, we focus on what it takes to overcome the most difficult times in our lives. Having people around you to lean on, finding what outlets work best to express yourself, and focusing on doing what is best to accomplish your dreams are just a few of the topics we cover with our infinitely resilient guest: Carly Wopat.
Born, Carly Wopat in Santa Barbara, California on October 13, 1992.
Parents: Ron and Kathy, younger brothers: Jackson and Eli. twin sister: Sam (passed away in 2012).
Graduated in 2014 from Stanford University with a degree in Human Biology and a concentration in Human Performance and Behavior.
Began gymnastics when she was 3 and was a tri-sport athlete in high school.
Trains with the USA National Team.
“It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.” - William Ernest Henley
Most influential people in their life:
Liz Towne-Gilbert; Club coach, great person that has taught me a lot of life skills
Kerri Walsh; volleyball athlete, spreads light and happiness to everyone
Ron Wopat; father, humble and is a very caring person
KEY DISCUSSION POINTS
What has been the biggest struggle in your life?
What can we do to get through these hard times?
Share a moment that you feel you accomplished something that you have been trying to accomplish for so long.
What are some non-negotiables you must do to stay on your journey?
What are the most important things to do to be ready for your next matches?
The world is a beautiful place but there is also tragedy and loss
After losing someone very close to you, get to decide how it changes you.
Four years ago, “my family experienced an unexpected suicide. My twin sister Sam had been struggling with depression. She was a beautiful person through and through. We did everything together growing up...losing her was devastating. Everything I knew came crumbling down and a huge piece of me was lost forever. It is a void that can never be filled and she can never be replaced. Accepting this is the most difficult thing; that things will never be as they were. You get to decide whether (in times like these) you cower from life and fight everything uselessly, or embrace it…and attempt to find your footing in life again.” CW @ 14:20
Finding outlets for our emotions and ways to express ourselves is a major means to get through difficult times in our lives.
“I had a sculpture class that I could go in and just spend hours working on projects and building things; an outlet of self expression through art. I also wrote poetry, taught myself how to play guitar, got into photography. I have just learned how to express myself and get emotions and feelings out through different types of media.” CW @21:00
There is strength in the people around you and in new ways to find outlets.
Different mentors bring different things to the table. It is important to go about these mentor-mentee relationships with an open mind and receive advice without judgement.
Dreams may seem impossible at the early stages of the pursuit, but keeping up the grind is the only way to achieve them.
“One of my biggest dreams was to play on the national team and play professional volleyball. I would look up to these girls playing the highest level and try to imagine myself in their position. It seems so impossible when being so young. Just kept climbing the ladder.” CW @ 27:00
Cross training and diversifying activities is a great way to increase mental and physical health.
Recovery is crucial in performing at your peak
Search for resources and people that are subject matter experts to learn about staying healthy.
ATHLETE'S TIP JAR
What is one insight you would give to athletes in your position?
“Do not let your performance define you. Even if volleyball is life (or any other sport), it can overtake your mind and everything you do. When we lose or don’t perform as good as we want, we feel bad. Just know that playing bad doesn’t mean you are a bad person! If you make a mistake don’t check yourself out. It is only a mistake in that moment. Don’t let your performance define you.” CW @ 48:00
What advice would you give to your younger self?
“Follow your passions. Don’t worry about going on the route society has set up for youth today. Everyone has opinions on how kids should transition and what the career path should be. Just because yours is different doesn’t mean it is wrong, it’s just your path.” CW @ 51:05
The 4 Hour Workweek - Tim Ferris
The 4 Hour Body - Tim Ferris
The Model Health Show - Sean Stevenson
Invictus - Poem
FOLLOW CARLY HERE:
Snapchat: carwo | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
DEFINITION OF BEYOND ATHLETIC?
“It means not just being an amazing athlete but (also) having skills, passions, and hobbies outside of athletics. It is really starting to grow, being beyond athletic. It is amazing to balance and juggle so many things. Being an athlete at this level is a big feat, but having other skills as well is amazing.” - CW