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Anna Mathisen, ACC

“As an athlete, I understand that self-awareness is everything. To master my sport, I need to feel every muscle, understand each movement and know how my body will cheat when it is fatigued. When I learn a new physical skill, if I try too hard, push too much and am tense or negative about my progress the result is never as good as when I relax, enjoy, encourage, and enhance what works. Outrigger canoe paddling is an ocean sport that informs my understanding of self-awareness and growth and most of all embracing and welcoming fear. Sport is a raw arena where our deepest truths come out. My love of growth, systems, connection to self and others crosses over and blurs when I coach people on their lives outside of sport.”

Anna has a natural way of connecting with people. She blends her strong physical presence and direct, straightforward approach with a sense of softness, depth and fun. After 10 years working as a shipping broker, struggling to find connection and meaning, Anna rediscovered strength as a leader through the sports arena (paddling outrigger canoes in Hawaii) where she coaches teams and individuals to happy goal-reaching experiences. “Put a group of adults together in sport and you will see what team work is about,” Anna says.

As a Leadership that Works faculty member, Anna works with clients who are extremely hard on themselves and have an inner dialogue full of negativity and fear. “I help clients enjoy the process of their life and decide for themselves what success looks like and feels like while being their own biggest advocate. Working with me, they become kinder to their body and mind.”

Anna lives by the mantra that “less is more” and finds creativity in simplifying her life. Anna is a strong advocate for conscious consumption. As an ambassador for the Ocean Recovery Alliance, a nonprofit focused on eliminated plastic waste in the ocean; Anna is working towards a single use plastic free culture in ocean sports. Anna also works to empower women to set and achieve their goals and empower themselves through Pacific Wahine, her outrigger team dedicated to racing and reporting on women in ocean paddling.

In her spare time, you can find her exploring the outdoors and her physical limits. Long distance hiking, mountain biking, cross-country skiing, racing outrigger canoes, and surfing are some of her favorite ways to do this.

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