Gabrielle Reece is a beautiful human being. I don’t just say that in reference to the former Volleyball virtuoso’s modeling career, or how she dominated the 90’s with her striking looks and indomitable will. Over twenty years later, she fully understands that her currency extends beyond the superficial and is rooted deep in her mindset. From a very young age Gabrielle knew that looks weren’t everlasting – the same goes for athletic talent. Instead of defining herself through the incredible accomplishments of her 20’s, she instead forged an iron will that lasts a lifetime.
With her volleyball and modelling career in the rearview, Gabby is now an author, mother and fitness inspiration to women across the globe. Gabby and her husband, surfer Laird Hamilton, have created the XPT (Extreme Performance Training) workout to encourage an active lifestyle. She’s the host of the NBC competition series “Strong” and creates incredibly inspiring blog posts designed to foster confidence through her website www.gabriellereece.com.
I didn’t know what to expect from our time together on the IQ stage, I was just excited to talk to Gabrielle Reece. By the end I was blown away by her wisdom, wit and winning attitude about a life well-lived. She dispensed nugget after nugget of tangible wisdom that’s usable for everyone willing to escape the Matrix. Watch this episode, it can change you.
what you'll learn
- Why there’s honesty in winning and losing.
- How trying to return to the person you were in your past is a punishment.
- How to evaluate your self-worth.
- How to create introspection through adversity.
- Why defining your values is fundamental to success.
- How to reconnect in the age of social media.
- How to defining success on your own terms.
- Why failure is like breathing.
- How to erase the slate to move forward.
I think life is about survival. When I went to college and kind of fell into playing volleyball on a scholarship, I felt really fortunate. Then I fell in love with the game. So when I had the opportunity to turn professional, I understood what the limitations were. Beach volleyball is a very niche sport and there’s only so many opportunities. So if you say, “Hey, I’m gonna take all my eggs and dump them into that basket,” sometimes that can maybe bite you a little bit later. So I think I was always navigating, following things that I thought I could do well, that I had a skill set for, but also again, back to survival.
This is really important for anyone and anything they’re going to do in their life: I played volleyball because I fell into it and I fell in love with the game and it happened. Golf, I put the end goal first and not the process. I didn’t enjoy it. I was so focused on “I want to try to get my card, my card, my card, my card” that I wasn’t actually enjoying any of it. I was just grinding it out. That really was a big lesson for me about following things that you truly believe in and like and enjoy because when it’s not going well you can still get after it. That was a very humbling and important lesson for me with golf. And I spent about eight hours a day at the golf course for three solid years, hitting thousands of balls, flying to Vegas to get coaching, flying to Arkansas — doing it. So that was interesting… And I was not a success.
“No matter what happens in life, when you build a home or a building, it has a foundation. Whether it was 100 years ago or it’s today, it always has a foundation. So as a person ask yourself ‘what’s your foundation?’ It’s honesty, it’s hard work, it’s self-respect, it’s respect to others. And I tell my daughters that whatever the building is, the color, the window shapes, the style, that’s on you. It’s your life, it’s your destiny, it’s your path. I will do my very best to make sure that that foundation is there.
I told my daughter, “Everywhere you go, there’s always gonna be someone prettier with better hair, a better butt. But if you can develop yourself as a person with an interest and a skill set, then everything else is a bonus.” And the other thing is if my only currency was beauty, or athletics for that matter, there’s a timeframe on that. So the idea is to become richer in certain ways as we get older, not poorer. If beauty was my currency, then my apex was about 20 years ago, probably. And so I everyone should try to understand what their long term currency is.
At the end of the day, when my husband and I talk about success, sometimes it gets defined as either power, notoriety, money. And I think all of that is and can be quite nice and useful, but how do I make myself happy? How do I express what’s inside my mind, and manifest it, and make it real? Because that’s an incredible feeling. If you have an idea, and you make it real through relationships, and friendships, that’s how we grow. We can’t grow isolated. It’s difficult. These are the things I’m trying to weave into the notion of success. Not just money, fame, and power. Because I think that’s short-sighted, and I also think the collateral damage on that can be heavy duty. I think people don’t realize things like if you have a billion dollars – That’s, great but what do you think that does to your family? If your kids have parents that actually think ‘maybe I do or I don’t have to work’ — that’s scary. So I think the idea of success is what it means to the individual person.