BridgeWing... What inspired the name?Sep 01, 2021
There was pressure… sure. I knew it would be there. I was finally confronted with the answer to the question I’d been asking myself since I was 15… Is this the right path? Something I’d been exclusively focused on for years had actually happened. I was in the middle of the ocean, no land in sight, isolated from my friends and family and thrown into a pressure cooker of personalities, expectations and uncertainty. My “why” hadn’t changed… I wanted to serve… but was I ready? Was I ready to lead?
So many questions had flooded my mind as the pier grew smaller and smaller at the beginning of my first deployment. Surrounded by haze gray and overcome by the smells of fuel, sweat, food, and what would become the all too familiar “ship smell” I felt everything. Excitement, fear, uncertainty, curiosity, ambition, responsibility, passion, frustration… It was a lot to take in.
Then I found it… my oasis. The bridge wing.
The bridge wing serves a crucial purpose on a navy ship. It sits outside the pilot house, exposed to the elements, away from the technology and computers. It provides a space to get perspective… to allow only the most important information to be provided to you. You’re high up so that you can really see the “big picture.” All of your senses can be accessed from this place. You are connected… to the ship, the crew, the mission, and the sea. You feel the force of the wind. You see what’s coming, be it a blanket of fog, ships, land, or open sea. You taste the salt in the air and smell the ocean scents. You hear other ships, the sound of the crew, the crash of the waves on the bow. All of this gives you access to your clarity and intuition. It is pure magic.
The bridge wing was where I went to gain perspective strategically and tactically… but also emotionally and spiritually. It is where I went to process the horrors and beauty I witnessed doing disaster relief and humanitarian missions. I returned to the bridge wing to contemplate leadership failures of those I was meant to look up to. I went to the bridge wing to process my own failures and reconnect to my purpose and values during difficult times. The bridge wing provided a space for me to connect with my shipmates and talk like actual humans, rather than just “military officers”. The bridge wing gave me the gift of taking in some of the most amazing natural beauty I’ve ever seen, surrounded by billions of stars and glowing water, unimpacted by manufactured lights. It gave me a place to recharge, so that I could fully access my grit and potential as I worked to become the very best version of myself. It was my place of perspective in so many ways.
I may not have access to a physical bridge wing now that I am no longer on active duty, but it gives me unfathomable joy to be able to provide that space to my clients. I named my coaching company BridgeWing in honor of that space. Ambition and passion are jet fuel. They can propel us through nearly insurmountable challenges, but moving that quickly can blur the big picture and make it impossible to get a clear perspective. The BridgeWing mission is to provide leaders with a space of unencumbered clarity to unlock their deepest intuition and move forward purposefully towards greatness. It is a true honor to create this space, and I’m grateful every day for the ability to do this critical work.
Learn more about BridgeWing coaching and programs.
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