• Robyn Kenney

Embracing an Underdog Mentality

Looking for a good book to read this summer? If you want a page-turner about one of the best women soccer players in the world, then look no further than Carli Lloyd's autobiography, "When Nobody Was Watching: My Hard-Fought Journey to the Top of the Soccer World." published in 2016. You'll easily get swept-away reading about US team soccer drama, extreme workouts, international travel, competition and how Carli pushed through it all.

Anyone passionate about fighting for their dreams or helping others get to the top of a respective sport would love the messages and stories in this book. Carli's story is about perseverance, strength of character and hard work. I highly recommend it, whether you are a coach, high school soccer player, collegiate athlete or just love reading about soccer. It is so easy to relate to what she went through regardless of what team sport your play or coach.

Being a jersey girl myself and former international athlete, I personally I loved it! Her stories brought me down memory lane. I also went through my own disappointments and triumphs being a late bloomer in high school, playing field hockey at Boston University, winning the Silver Medal at the 2003 Pan American Games and being honored into BU Athletic's Hall of Fame Honor in 2017.

It also affirms my current role - supporting athletes as the Director of Peak Performance at MB Athletics. Carli, just like every other athlete, struggled with consistent performance until she seriously added mental preparation to her game. She calls out her guided visualizations as a key component to her scoring PKs with tens of thousands of people watching and medal placement on the line. Contact me if you want custom tools to help you be more consistent under pressure.

Embracing an Underdog Mentality

As your read about her team selection struggles at an early age in U13 club soccer, handling incompatible coaching styles and battling for playing time - it becomes obvious she uses these setbacks to fuel her underdog mentality. Instead of quitting and complaining, she turns her experiences into an "l'll-prove-them-wrong attitude". This fuels an intense work ethic and ability to outlast naysayers. It’s motivating the read how she channeled this fire inside.

With the right mental training, anyone can build-up this resilience and motivation to work harder for your dreams.

That's exactly what I did when I got turned down by my top two choices - Duke and UConn field hockey programs as a high school player. I was fortunate to get recruited by Boston University which ended up being a wonderful experience. While I was there, I fired myself up to prove those other college coaches wrong. This led me to be a freshman starter, selected to the U19 National Team, receive All American Honors my junior and senior year and eventually selected as a USA Senior National Team Player. I was one of only three Boston University Terriers that played for Team USA. That's the power of the underdog mentality!

It is a skill to take setbacks and perceive them in a way that helps you grow and be stronger. Many know about the idea behind the growth mindset – but few know how to implement it. If you are looking for some motivation and tangible tools to give yourself an edge, call or text me for a free consultation.

Secrets to Success

To find out the secrets to her success that ultimately put Carli on top of the soccer world as FIFA player of the year in 2015 & 2016, Women's World Cup Champion and two-time Olympic Gold Medalist, read her book. She credits her long-time personal trainer James Galanis. His support, wisdom and tough-love attitude kept her focused on the right mindset and continuously challenged her - which gave her the confidence to reach the pinnacle of her soccer career. You'll read about his advice and actual emails he wrote to her before every big tournament. His play-book; known as "The Five Pillars" is a well-rounded philosophy any elite player must possess.

#CarliLloyd #USWomensSoccer #FIFAPlayeroftheYear #Soccer #WorldCupSoccer #DukeFieldHockey #BostonUniversityFieldHockey #USAFieldHockey #halloffame #jamesgalanis


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