Carrie Soto Is Back by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Carrie Soto is fierce, determined, and incredibly hard-working – characteristics honed during her career as the unquestionably best tennis player of all time. She was enjoying her retirement until a talented young player burst onto the scene, threatening to break her record.
As Carrie plots her comeback, she is continually plagued by impulsivity.
We all have impulsive moments. If you can’t perfectly recall a time when you’ve had impulse control problems, try going into Target with a list of exactly one thing you need.
Impulsivity is problematic when it creates negative (personal, financial, professional, etc) consequences in your life, as it does in Carrie’s.
If I were working with Carrie, I’d want to teach her a few skills.
First, I’d say: “A feeling doesn’t have to mean a behavior,” until I was blue in the face. We’d probably say it together a few times, which she would hate a little and internally mock.
Then, we’d discuss the situations that trigger Carrie’s impulsivity and plan alternative ways to handle them. Things like practicing mindfulness, taking deep breaths, or walking away.
Finally, I’d remind Carrie not to expect immediate perfection. Like the perfect serve, change takes practice.