Skip to main content

Amy on What Being a College Athlete Taught Her

I’m never at my desk.

“Where’s Amy?” is a frequent question around our office. My executive assistant Callie is always running around trying to tracking me down. I like to be in the action, buzzing between our buildings, talking to people, conducting meetings, testing products, getting into the thick of things.

I’ve never liked to sit still. As a kid, I used to skip or run everywhere, which drove my parents crazy. I loved being outside, playing, surfing, and being at the beach. Eventually, I did learn to channel this energy into sports, and since the age of eight, I’ve been an athlete. I even went on to play tennis at Flagler College and dreamed of being a professional player.

While I might not have become Maria Sharapova, tennis has taught me a lot -- about life and business.

Tennis taught me how to be in control -- of my body, my time, and, most importantly, my mind. To be an athlete, you have to learn mental toughness.

The mental toughness I developed as an athlete helped me survive my personal health struggles. As an athlete, I was used to having this body I could count on, one that naturally performed for me, so struggling physically threw me for a loop. There was a lot of inner turmoil initially as I came to terms with the fact that my body wasn’t going to act the way I’d like it to, but my training helped me to overcome that fight -- mentally and physically.

Tennis also taught me how to thrive under pressure. As a student-athlete, who graduated in three years, I’ve always done well when the pressure was high, and I still carry that with me today as a mom and CEO, juggling everything my five kids and our business have going on. It’s also given me mental clarity during high-pressure situations that could have meant either big wins or losses for my business.

Lastly, tennis taught me that the last point counts the most! Whoever wins the last point, wins the game, so it’s important to stay optimistic and plan for long-term success. You can’t let some low points get you down in business or life; focus on the big picture and your end goals, and keep going. It’s not over until it’s over.