MEET Lindsay                      

 My name is Lindsay Gottlieb. I am an assistant coach with the Cleveland Cavaliers. I was the first woman to leave a Division 1 Women’s Basketball Head Coaching position to work on an NBA coaching staff. I spent 20 years coaching women’s college basketball. Most recently I was the head coach at Cal, where we won a Pac 12 championship and reached the FInal 4. I am most excited about using my platform to reach young women and help them to become the best versions of themselves, and to believe that they are capable of greatness in whatever form that takes. I am passionate about my career and work life, as well as my family. I have a supportive and amazing husband, Patrick Martin, and we have a gregarious, energetic and loving 2 years old son, Jordan.

 Tell us about a GRITTY MOMENT in your life that has forced you to learn what you are truly made of…

    In the beginning of my senior year of high school, I tore my ACL playing basketball, ending my season and crushing my spirit. Up to that point, basketball was a large part of my identity and the injury was the toughest thing I had ever had to deal with. It forced me to find my value beyond sport, to deal with fear and sadness, and to ultimately tap into a new level of strength I wasn’t sure that I had. Less than 2 years later, at the beginning of my sophomore year of college, my mother passed away from a brief illness. It’s funny how life works: only 23 months before, I thought there could not possibly be anything more difficult than a torn ACL. However, the juxtaposition of these 2 life events actually forced me to “grow guts,” learn the true meaning of “grit,” and has actually guided me through navigating much of my adult life. While I would never have chosen to lose my mother at such a young age, I am truly grateful for the 19 years I had with her, and for the everlasting values and grit she instilled in me, both in her life and through dealing with her death.

GUTS: How did you “grow guts” and be brave enough to get through your “gritty moment”? Were you afraid? Where did you find your courage? How did facing that moment affect your confidence? Did you feel more confident afterward?
    In dealing with my injury, and then my grief, I was able to get a deeper sense of my own sense and what I value in life. I allowed myself, in both instances, to really FEEL how I was FEELING. In doing so, and not hiding or pushing away those feelings, I was able to gain strength and move past the sadness, or anger or pain …in doing so, I found that I became truer to myself and being the type of person that I wanted to be.
 RESILIENCE: What did you learn from pushing through your “gritty moment”? What helped you “not give up” and persevere?
      I learned that life will always have peaks and valleys, and learning to navigate (in a healthy way) various adversity or emotions is the most important skill you can have. What helped me to persevere was a tremendous support system around me, but also an ability to listen to myself, and give myself what was needed: whether it was time spent on mental or physical health, taking risks, the company of others, etc.
 IMPERFECTION: How do you deal with failure and making mistakes? Did your “gritty moment” force you to learn and grow?
    I deal with failure by owning the moment. Not shying away from it. Letting myself feel the feeling, and then figuring out how to move on. As a coach, I have lost many games. There have been moments of failure. I allow myself to feel badly for a period of time, and then learn from it and move on. My “gritty moment” back in HS and college certainly has helped me deal with failures throughout my life.
TEAM: What role did your support system play in helping you through this challenging time? What role has this “team” had in your life?
    I have many “teams” in my life: my family, my friends, my colleagues, and my actual teams! These support systems have been there for every up and down. I think it’s so important to have a healthy relationship with yourself, and high self esteem as an individual, but everyone also needs a built in support system, around them.
How has playing sports and/or participating in athletics positively affected your life?
    Sport has made me feel strong, it’s taught me to understand and value the power of my body, it’s taught me teamwork and how to deal with adversity, success and failure.
And just for fun… What advice would you give to your younger “GRITTY GIRL” self?
  I would tell myself to embrace every moment … the good and the bad. Spend energy on the people on your “team” and don’t worry too much about those who aren’t.

“Thank you Lindsay for sharing your GRIT!” 

Connect with Lindsay via her Twitter