Tami Matheny may seem like she’s always been confident in herself, but confidence is something this Moore, South Carolina entrepreneur has had to work at. Matheny works to help athletes, coaches and teams build confidence, leadership and positive mindsets through her business Refuse 2 Lose Coaching. While helping others, she continues to push herself as well, overcoming her own fears of writing by, you guessed it, writing a book – because personal growth is a life long journey.
Matheny’s story, as told to The Story Exchange 1,000+ Stories Project:
I have always been fascinated how the mind can be your biggest asset or worst enemy. I wanted to be in a position to help make a difference in other people careers and lives. Success to me is making a difference. Every day my goal is to make a difference in at least 5 different people’s lives. I ask myself if I can I share an experience or a technique that might help someone overcome adversity or achieve a goal.
My biggest success was actually with myself. Growing up, I seemed from the outside a very confident person. I made good grades and I was a very successful athlete. However, on the inside I rode the confidence roller coaster. When I did well or had good feedback from a coach or teacher I was on top. When I didn’t receive the feedback I wanted, I quickly went down the hill. Through my work, I have been able to achieve 100% confidence in myself. Now everyday, I help someone else get off their own personal roller coaster. I am rewarded. My goal is to make sure I keep what’s most important to me at the center of what I do, while being able to make a living and reach as many people as possible.
My favorite part of my job in interacting with people. The part I do not enjoy as much is the business aspect. Word of mouth had been my biggest sales tool. However, that tactic did not work as well with the release of my book, “The Confident Athlete.” I am trying to learn new ways to get my book to reach more people. My book has definitely been my top challenge. I always had good grades – except when it came to writing. Once a teacher actually handed me back a paper I had written with an F on it. Her comment said, “too good to be yours.” This only fed my belief that I was smart but couldn’t write. For years, I refused to write blogs or even a book. I finally realized I had to get outside my comfort zone and break this self limiting belief. This led to me writing “The Confident Athlete.” Not only did I shed some beliefs that weren’t beneficial to me, I also created a lasting business card with the book. Despite the challenges, I would like to continue writing books.
I don’t think I could single one person out who I look up to. I have been blessed to have family member and friends that have been positive examples and influenced me. I won’t be able to name them all but I would have to start with my parents. My dad taught me my work ethic and showed me the benefits of being mentally tough on the playing field. My mom has taught me that relationships are the most important thing in life. Relationships fill in the missing pieces.
I have to mention Dean Smith as well. I have modelled some of my coaching philosophies after his. He knew his purpose was to make a difference in the guys he coached. It was more than just about winning. He was big on relationships and creating ‘family.’ This has become an important part of who I am as a person and coach. Again, there are many people that have set an example for me.