AASP Conference Insights and Inspiration

It’s been a while since I’ve shot out a blog post, do people even read blogs anymore?! Well, it does not matter because I’m here and I’m back- with the goal of being more consistent in either writing posts or posting podcasts.

Last week I attended the Association of Applied Sport Psychology Annual Convention in Portland, OR. It was amazing and I ❤ Portland! Sprinkled throughout this post are a few snaps from the trip.

I walked away with so much more than I expected! I not only learned a few new techniques or approaches that I would like to apply in my practice, but realized how deeply important it is for me to intellectually challenged and to grow. I call this “intellectual self-care.” I realized that in the almost 2 years I’ve had Ari that intellectual self-care has been low. I will not make excuses, and for a while, I was using Ari or lack of sleep as ones, but really, I had not made time to get out of my intellectual comfort zone.  This conference reminded me of that, well Michael Gervais keynote talk reminded me that I’m not challenging myself to get out of my comfort zone as often as I need in order to grow. He reminded us that the mental edge we are all avoiding is really an emotional one!

He shared many other things but that was the one that really stuck with me.

The other amazing thing that happened was a chance encounter with George Mumford, mindfulness and meditation expert that works with the NBA, Phil Jackson, Lakers and Chicago Bulls (to name a few). I’m a firm believer in Divine timing and guidance. Three years ago, I was supposed to do a meditation training with George in San Francisco but due to his health issues it was cancelled. But during the conference I was hanging out at the conference hotel talking to my husband on the phone when I look across the way and see George paying for food. I wasn’t sure if it was him at first but I promptly hung up the phone and introduced myself. He was so gracious and kind to hang out with me while he waited for his food. I was in awe and blown away by his kindness, guidance and friendship he offered in those moments. He was so genuine and real. It’s not often that you meet a perfect stranger but connect as if you knew them for a lifetime. George has a presence of seeing the soul and connecting on a real level. It was truly a gift to spend that time with him. I am truly humbled and it reminds me that Divine guidance is always working on our behalf. “When the student is ready the teacher will arrive”  George reminded me that my heart always knows that answer and I need to stop making excuses to talk me out of what I know. DAMN, talk about a truth bomb!

One thing that has been in my heart is learning new ways to get out of my comfort zone- to boss it up and take new risks! This has been tricky because for the last two years, I’ve been thrust out of my comfort zone of being a new mom and parent. However, this past week I was reminded that I also need to focus on doing that as my own person- as me, Gloria. I do know that my passion and purpose is to share my experiences, knowledge, wisdom, and skills to help others uncover the Light within themselves to help them in shine, in life and sport.  I am grateful to have had the opportunity to attend this conference and receive the message loud and clear! Time to get to more work and help others shine!

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I also got to meet my AASP mentor, Dr. Liz Boyer of Northwest Performance Psychology, in person! I am deeply blessed for her connection, guidance and support. Thank you for sharing space with me Liz!

Lastly, I am deeply appreciative to Sac State Athletics for providing me the opportunity to attend this year! Everything I learn is not only for myself but to serve the student-athletes and our Hornet community better.

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Dr. Gloria Petruzzelli

Dr. Petruzzelli is clinical sport psychologist and certified mindfulness meditation teacher located in Sacramento, California. She works with elite athletes and sport teams across the country. She is competitive athlete herself and enjoys practicing yoga, spending time with her family and traveling.

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