How One Olympian Turned Devastation into Inspiration

Yes, gymnastics is about perfect performances — but it’s also about getting back up after you fall, over and over again. When gymnast Jordyn Wieber failed to make the all-around finals at the 2012 Olympic Games, she was devastated. But two days later, she helped her team win gold. She shares how she’s learned to be resilient through life’s toughest moments and what it takes to move forward. [This talk contains sensitive content.]

This talk was presented to a local audience at TEDxUCLA, an independent event.

Jordyn Wieber, Olympic Gold Medalist, looks at the moments of devastation that at times are part of the fabric of life, and how to turn these into transcendent​ moments of inspiration​. Jordyn Wieber is an Olympic gold medalist and American gymnast from DeWitt, Michigan. This teenage gymnastics phenom caught the world’s attention by becoming the World Champion in 2011. A key member of the “Fierce Five”, Jordyn helped the U.S. Olympic Women’s Gymnastics Team capture the team gold medal at the London Olympic Games in 2012. In 2017, Jordyn graduated from UCLA with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and currently serves as an Assistant Coach for the UCLA Gymnastics Team. As a former Olympic gold medalist, Jordyn has expansive knowledge of how to succeed in gymnastics, but her influence extends beyond the confines of her winning combination of physical prowess and determination. Jordyn is still one of the top influencers in gymnastics and also serves as a motivational speaker and vocal advocate for preventing child sexual abuse in sports. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at https://www.ted.com/tedx

Sleep Better. Be Stronger. Live Longer.

What We Do

  1. Start a wind-down time if possible where your evening or time before bed gives you a chance to relax to sleep.
  2. Your bed is for sleeping so treat that space as such so your body will habitually recognize that area.
  3. Stop tech or use blue blockers so you aren’t signaling your brain to stay awake.
  4. Don’t play on your phone in bed. Remember the bedroom is for sleeping and umm other stuff.
  5. Consider an evening bath with some passive stretching to unwind and relax the body.
  6. Avoid naps as much as possible.
  7. Wake up and go to sleep at the same time every day.

What We Eat

  1. Watch your stimulants. Even 300 mg a day can be disruptive to your day AND night. It also can disrupt proper hormone regulation.
  2. Nicotine is a stimulant that won’t actually relax you contrary to prior thought.
  3. Try a calming tea in the evening.
  4. Don’t eat too late so you have enough time to digest your food.

What We Experience

  1. Make your room dark. Blackout curtains are inexpensive and work to muffle sound as well.
  2. Use ambient noise like a fan if you like.
  3. Keep the temperature cool. 66-69 degrees seems to be ideal for the body.
  4. TURN OFF THE PHONE. Set your phone to silent and on a schedule where it can turn on when you are waking.
  5. If you are unable to sleep get up and sit in your living room and read a book. You want to relax the mind while keeping the sacred space of the bedroom for sleeping.
  6. Heavy blankets can help some relax and sleep better
  7. You might need a pillow under your knees or between them for low back comfort

Additional information
https://shawnbellon.com/2018/08/06/circadian-rhythms/
https://shawnbellon.com/2018/09/09/the-lack-of-sleep-is-killing-us/
https://shawnbellon.com/2018/10/12/binaural-beats-for-improving-physical-mental-health/

Frog In A Blender

“Frog In A Blender”

“Mental illness. What comes to your mind, pardon the pun, when you read the words mental illness? I know some people just rush to the quick verbiage of a “crazy person.” And I’m okay with using those descriptors because this particular writing isn’t about what’s accurate or appropriate and description is much as the trueness of your thoughts. I also not naive and I realized several years ago that the mentally ill will continue to be a marginalized group that is misunderstood by the general populace and greatly ignored. The mentally ill tend to be part of the dredges of society. A unique cast system of broken individuals not seen valuable.

After I was diagnosed my heart broke in several pieces. You knew something was wrong with yourself You felt these different thoughts, urges, sensations, and sometimes confusion, and yet as if a paralytic trying to will their legs to move, you yourself or unable to act or think in a normal way.

You know it’s funny as I reflect on a lot of the different relationships throughout my life of coworkers, colleagues, clients, business associates, friends, & lovers. All the while I never felt okay. I felt like I was doing my best to keep a deep dark secret. Who I am must not be found out.

It’s funny, living years with the mind of someone with borderline personality disorder, you think I wouldn’t be nearly so ignorant to what people would think in regards to my behaviors. And yet I felt like I was able to sort of fool people. That I too could be normal. I wasn’t fooling anyone. As the cliche goes I was only fooling myself.

One thing for sure, an individual that struggles with something like borderline personality disorder has his work cut out for himself BUT so do the loved ones who also experience that diagnosis as witnesses. In some ways, it feels like collateral damage and your personal shame grows exponentially because in the normal stable moments of your thought process you’d never want anyone to be harmed with what you struggle with. But that’s not how it works.

So, of course, a lot of people would think with my own life I would use my diagnosis as an enabling tool. That I too am just a victim of something outside of my control. My divorces, broken relationships, personal debts, suicide attempts are things that happened to me.

Man! I would love that excuse! I’d take it and run with it if that was possible. However, my actions are still on me. Even the unknowns in my life are my responsibility to uncover and understand.”

(Excerpt from book)