“If we don’t know what the most important thing to do in a day is, or in a moment, then we will become more like leaves, blowing with every breeze. And so I think there have been times in my life where if I wasn’t clear with myself on my own priorities or my goals then I was behaving more like a leaf and being blown around—and I don’t think we want to be like rocks, where we’re not affected by anything, but I think I’ve grown and try to be more like a tree where there’s some roots but you can still feel the breeze. I say this thing—that tomorrow starts tonight—and I really mean it when I say I just prepare as best I can for the next day or the next thing I’m doing so that I give myself the best chance at attacking what my north star is first.”
Alexi Pappas is a professional athlete who holds the Greek national record in the 10,000-meters and competed for Greece at the 2016 Olympic Games. She’s also an award-winning writer and filmmaker whose work has appeared in The New York Times, Runner’s World, The Atlantic, Outside magazine, and other publications. Her first book, Bravey: Chasing Dreams, Befriending Pain, and Other Big Ideas comes out on January 12.
In this conversation, we talked about her new book, how it came to be, and the process of writing it. We also discussed the power of imagination, personal responsibility, approaching our mental health the same way we do our physical health, and a lot more.