Olivia Vivian discusses how her environment really impacted her performance and what all leaders should think about.
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If life is a series of challenges, Olivia Vivian has lived more than her fair share. Born with congenital diaphragmatic hernia (a hole in her primary respiratory muscle), she was told she’d never compete in sports. At nine, in following her dreams to be a gymnast, she was told she was too tall. At 17, she was told to quit because she’d never make the Olympic team. And at 23, she was told she was far too old for the sport. It’s all thanks to Olivia Vivian’s tenacious nature that saw her push through every obstacle to reach her sporting elite. With an impressive list of credentials to her name including the World Championships and 2008 Beijing Olympics, more set backs were to come: The death of her father and a broken back.
Making a full recovery to compete at the 2014 Commonwealth Games (and helping to win the silver medal for her team), Olivia Vivian eventually retired from gymnastics. Having grown up well beyond her years, enduring intense verbal abuse, multiple injuries and a deteriorating mental state under the pressures of competition, Olivia opened up her own cafe to honour her late father Craig Vivian who passed away of Melanoma Cancer. A few years later she found Ninja Warrior, using it as a vehicle to change her life and unlock her full potential. When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change… a maxim she happily lives by and promotes.
Her Ninja Warrior journey has seen her compete all over the world and to date, she is the only female in Ninja Warrior History to earn furthest fastest in Semi-Finals… her next big goal is to be crowned the winner of Australian Ninja Warrior!