As a WNBA player with the Washington Mystics, I’m having the most fun I’ve ever had and working harder than I ever have. It’s pretty standard to be traveling, and playing or making appearances on nights and weekends. I’ve learned that to successfully live my mantra of “demand excellence,” I need to carve out time for the important people in my life, myself included. Here are a few of my own self-care strategies. I hope they’ll help you too!
Water + Friends = Fun
I think the saying goes “the happiest day of a boat owner’s life is the day they buy the boat and the day they sell it.” My wife Amanda and I got a sporty 20-foot motor boat last year so we’re on the front end of that journey. We love being out on the water listening to country music. You don’t need to own a boat to enjoy being out on the water—join friends on theirs, rent a canoe or kayak, go sailing or just relax at a beach.
I’m surrounded by lots of people most days—fans, coaches, teammates, and staff. It’s essential for me to zone out and just focus on my breathing. Amanda knows I need my 10 minutes a day to meditate, and she takes care of that by giving me space and taking our two big dogs Rasta and Wrigley with her. When the Mystics are traveling, I’ll use headphones on the plane to get zen if that’s what I need to do.
Work Hard for Pizza
The WNBA regular season is 34 games, followed by playoffs and then hopefully the championship. Many of my teammates also play overseas during the WNBA off-season. If you’re like us, you need to play just as hard as you work. In Delaware, Amanda and I really look forward to time off the clock to grab a bite to eat – pizza is high on our list – and hang out with family and friends.
Find a Sideline That Brings You Joy
At the Mary Campbell Center for adults with special needs, located in Wilmington, Delaware, I have a buddy through the Best Buddies program. I love going there—it feels good in so many ways. Amanda and I have also gotten into woodworking, which is calming and rewarding.
In life, we’re never going to find the perfect balance. I’m thankful for the privilege of working as a professional athlete every day. And I know that being the best player, partner, friend, daughter, and sister I can be means taking time for me too.