SA 006: Cassidy Lichtman, Member of USA Volleyball



Cassidy Lichtman of the USA Volleyball team joins us in this episode of The Sweet Adversity Podcast. We talk about her journey, from some of the things that she dealt with early in her life, to her current success in the sport. We see from Cassidy how high performing athletes  respond to adversity, build resilience, develop character and a growth mindset.

With a mom who was a volleyball coach and an older brother who played sports, Cassidy Lichtman’s life since her early years centered around sports, specifically volleyball. In high school she was named PrepVolleyball Finalist and National High School Junior of the Year in 2005 and was elected to the San Diego Athletic Hall of Fame in the same year. In college, she played for Stanford University where she graduated in 2011 with a bachelor of arts degree majoring in political science and followed with a master of arts degree in history later in the year. She was selected AVCA All-America First-Team in 2009 and 2010, capping a four-year career at Stanford.

Cassidy joined the USA Volleyball team in 2011. She was named to every U.S. Women’s National Team Roster in 2013, earning two gold medals and a silver medal in four tournaments. She started all seven matches at outside hitter helping U.S. win 2012 Pan American Cup.

Cassidy created her own volleyball clinic series called Play with a Purpose in which all money goes to benefit the Ronald McDonald House.

Some Questions We Ask:

  • At the age of 9, you couldn’t walk and you were told you couldn’t walk again. Leading up to that moment, what was everyday life like for you? What sort of things were you doing before that moment?
  • You woke up and you couldn’t walk. Can you walk us through the experience of that day and your mindset.
  • This doctor diagnosed you, and you were told that you will never walk again. What was your initial response to this?
  • Did you have any catalyst moment that made you say, “I can work through this?”
  • What do you say to people who go through struggles, who don’t have the right mindset, who don’t have the same drive to get through those things? Is there a way to develop the skill set? Or is it that person is who they are?
  • Is there a book that’s most influenced you, or movie or documentary; and why?

The Talent Code: Greatness Isn’t Born. It’s Grown. Here’s How. by Daniel Coyle

  • If you could have dinner with one person you admire, past or present, who would it be and why?

Joshua Chamberlain

What You’ll Learn in This Episode:

  • How Cassidy’s experience become her advantage or differentiator
  • What she thinks of the importance of resilience in sports
  • What exercise she’d recommend to someone who’s trying to build resilience that has helped her the most
  • Her next steps: life after volleyball


Twitter: @CassidyLichtman


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