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Olivia Vivian has been competing as an Australian Ninja Warrior athlete since 2017. With only two years of experience in ninja thus far, her vast accomplishments speak loudly of her determined and passionate heart. This podcast interview took place at the 2018 National Ninja League Finals, after Olivia competed as the only woman on the Stage 2 course, earning a first-place NNL World Title. Olivia boldly attacks each ninja course, giving off the impression that she has trained ninja her whole life. However, we know that’s not the case. In this episode, Olivia shares her secret to ninja success: self-belief.
Ninjababes defines self-belief as confidently encompassing the inner truth that you are in control of the direction of your thoughts and actions to reach what you define as your goals, passions, dreams, and purpose. Self-belief has been Olivia’s greatest obstacle in ninja; an obstacle every athlete encounters at some point in their athletic career. Her past struggle with self-belief may seem ironic being that Olivia competes amazingly well now, but her athletic journey is a testament to how self-belief has transformed her into the incredible athlete she is today.
We all know self-belief isn’t black and white. If it were as simple as saying, “I can do this”, then everyone would already be accomplishing what they set out to achieve. Self-belief is deeper than that. The core of self-belief is the unwavering belief that you will succeed in your passions or what you have set out to do. You must have hope in the goal, dream, or mission first. This is essential because it is easy to believe in yourself when others are believing in you or when everything is going just how you want it. Self-belief is easy when the circumstances are, but self-belief is not dependent on circumstances. It can’t be, not if you want to succeed. Hard days are even necessary to build perseverance and endurance, which are crucial to self-belief. Sometimes self-belief simply means showing up and knowing that your confidence in your dreams outweighs your emotions of the day.
Olivia had to decide that her dreams were worth pursuing. She had to intentionally choose that her dreams were bigger than a current injury, a setback, or defeating comments. Because of this mindset, when she heard destructive remarks about her ability, her self-belief helped her voice and actions respond with, “Watch me.”
Since believing in yourself is key to walking towards your dreams, you may ask yourself, ‘How do I foster self-belief when I honestly don’t have it? I truly believe in what I am doing, but believing in myself is another story.’ My feet are no strangers to this lonely road. I have been buried by burnout, injuries, and painful insults. But, they brought me to a place that made me redefine what I wanted, my purpose, and the reasons for why I was doing what I was doing. This led me to a crisis of belief in which I realized I needed a major change in my life to pursue happiness. In order to make this change, I needed to say ‘yes’ to a new opportunity that I didn’t know the definite outcome to.
Self-belief can be born out of the opportunity to say ‘yes’ to something daring and out of our comfort zone. This is exactly what Olivia did. She said ‘yes’ to trying out ninja, to the extraordinary, to different, to change. Olivia declared that she would show up. She told herself that she didn’t have to like it, but she would give herself the opportunity to see if she did. Olivia intentionally chose to respond by saying ‘yes’ to a new opportunity, instead of conforming to a perceived perception of what she thought the experience could be, which we often fall into. I feel that when I am faced with new opportunity my own brain is quick to jump to thinking: ‘I won’t like this’ or ‘I won’t like them.’ I jump to this conclusion because it’s safe. It saves me from the vulnerability that is necessary to grow. If you find yourself opting out instead of diving in, you may have believed the lie that joy lies in comfort of ‘no’, instead of the beautiful mystery of saying ‘yes’ to both your dreams and yourself.
Olivia’s story is a perfect example of why Ninjababes is the way it is. We know the power of self-belief and we have seen it transform lives. Ninjababes was started because Cara Poalillo believed in a vision for positively supporting women. Her self-belief encouraged her to take this step forward to making a dream become reality. As the Ninjababes community, we are passionate about building your self-belief up so that you can build your dreams too.
Check out this free downloadable mantra to help you get your mind in that positive, self-believing headspace! Click on the About page > Mantra