When it comes to juggling classes, practices, workouts, and sometimes a job, college athletes have a full plate (and then some). Though it's rare, some student athletes make the decision to take on second sport at the college level as well, complicating matters even more.
Richard Carthon is one of those rare two-sport college athletes down at Tulane, playing both football and baseball for the Green Wave, so he knows a thing or two about the sometimes overwhelming time demands student athletes face. Carthon recently took the stage at TEDxTU to talk about the lessons that he has learned being a dual-sport college student athlete, and his message is something that people from all walks of life can take something from.
Carthon's objective in taking the stage was to "be a voice for student athletes," by sharing his stories and perspective.
Below are some of his highlights from the five points he touches on:
-Wherever your feet are is where your focus should be
"When you're on the football field, your focus should be on football. When you're in the classroom, it should be on your studies."
-Remain disciplined so you can be time efficient
"I've done the math. Every one in this room has 168 hours in a week. But in my week, after you account for eating, sleeping, mandatory and 'voluntary' practices, working out, playing games and traveling, studying, going to class, and everything else, on a good day, I have about 3-4 hours of 'free time. So if I want to take a nap, or just go hang out with friends, I have roughly 3-4 hours a day to get that done."
"Within all of these time constraints, I am expected to be successful by producing results."
"Everyday that I wake up, I make a list of items that I have to get done, and as I check off each of these lists of items, I have a little bit more time for things that I want to do, as opposed to things that I have to do."
-Produce results, not excuses
"It's challenging for my teachers to understand what it's like to come from a three-hour practice, followed by strength and conditioning, and then go to a three-hour night class and stay alert and attentive. There are no excuses.
"My coach doesn't want to hear about how I stayed up all night studying for a test, or writing a paper, and that's why I'm going through the motions the next day at practice. Organizations don't want to hear how I couldn't attend their meeting because I've been averaging three hours of sleep for the past four nights. There are no excuses, they all want results and production."
-Success comes in cans, not in can nots
"I am a huge advocate in the power of your word. If I say that I'm going to get something done, it's getting done. Period."
"One of my life mantras is that you make time for what is important to you, not excuses."
-Build trust with others so you can become a part of the ultimate team
"You build trust when you turn a weakness into a strength."
"Building and maintaining trust in your relationships will do nothing but benefit your life."
"Whether you're and athlete, or just a regular person, it doesn't matter because when you think about your accomplishments at the end of the day, you don't think about what you did, you think about what you did with those people. You think about the times and accomplishments you had with the people around you."
We could argue for days about whether college student athletes deserve to be paid, or if they should be able to sign endorsement deals, but put all of that aside for a moment and listen to Carthon's full message below.