I credit one woman for my career in psychology.
Her name is Auntie Anne.
You may have heard of her. She makes an incredible pretzel.
As a teenager, I spent many days sitting at the food court in the mall, people watching, wondering who they were and what made them tick.
It seemed to me that all these strangers were just like the pretzels from Auntie Anne: some had hard exteriors, most had soft interiors, and each was a little twisted in his or her own way.
My interest in psychology was cultivated during my time at Ohio State. As a member of the 2002 National Championship football team, I was able to witness the culture and importance of a strong mind on a winning team.
After my time at Ohio State, I attended the University of Akron, where I received a MA and PhD in Counseling Psychology. And while I knew I wanted to work with the mind, my own mind was filled with a variety of activities: caddying, yoga, and even singing in a rock cover band. Through those experiences, I expanded my interest beyond sports psychology to performance psychology.
In Columbus, Ohio, once you are a Buckeye, you are always a Buckeye. And I returned home for my dream job in 2013, becoming the Ohio State University Sports Psychologist. I helped athletes of all sports deal with stress, anxiety, and depression, as well as strengthen the key mental elements that make up elite performance. Life was good…
But after a year on the new job, my life started to undergo major changes. I broke up a long relationship. I started traveling to different continents. I began questioning the long term viability of a demanding 40-hour-a-week client load.
Something in my life HAD to change.
So I changed it.
In 2016, I started my own business called Mindurance, with a few goals in mind.
I wanted flexibility. I wanted autonomy. I wanted innovation.
But I also wanted to keep eating my cake at Ohio State. And because of that, Mindurance grew slow - albeit organically - for the first three years.
Have you heard the story about the very successful man who stayed in his comfort zone his whole life?
So in 2019, I cut my scarlet and gray safety net, leaving the university I loved behind to move forward to pursue Mindurance full-time.
There's something liberating about giving up that guaranteed pay check. And by "liberating," I mean "terrifying."
But sometimes the greatest risk leads to the greatest reward.
Every opportunity in my life has led me to where I am today. And now, it's led me to you.
So here we are, at Mindurance, an organization dedicated to helping people live the lives they want to live.
But that path is not a straight line. It bends and winds in various directions, twisting when you least expect it.
Almost like a pretzel.
Thanks, Auntie Anne.