JoyProject Podcast: The Joy of Water Skiing with Kate McGormley

Let Kate McGormley describe the rush and unbridled joy she experiences every time she goes water skiing, a sport she’s done every year since she was 6 years old. An advocate for mental health and the power of kindness, she takes us through how she got into the sport, the mechanics of getting up on skis, and how being outside on the water helps her appreciate her body, her health, and the goodness that always exists in the world. Her infectious laugh is something that will brighten your day and may just convince you to give water skiing a try!

At the end of the podcast, I share something that brought me joy this week related to the episode. Given Kate’s focus on the joy of the outdoors, please check out the latest Fix Solutions Lab publication—The Joy Issue. Fix is a storytelling team at Grist, a nonprofit, independent media organization dedicated to telling stories of climate solutions and a just future. Fix was founded on a simple premise: promising solutions to the climate crisis exist — they just haven’t yet gained sufficient momentum to tip the scales.

The Joy Issue has stories about using joy as a tool for climate change activism. It’s the perfect blend of so many things I love that create the foundation for my life and career—top-notching writing and storytelling, joy, curiosity, and protecting our beautiful planet.

Topics discussed in this episode:
– When Kate started water skiing
– How she got started water skiing
– The mechanics of water skiing
– How water skiing make her grateful for so many things

Links to resources:
– Kate on Instagram – @kathryn.mcgormley
– Kate on Facebook – @Kate McGormley
– Kate’s blog – KindnessMatters365
– The Joy Issue by Fix at Grist – The Joy Issue
– Christa on Twitter – @christanyc
– Christa on Instagram – @christarosenyc
– Christa on Facebook – @AuthorChrista 
– Christa on Medium – @christaavampato
– Christa on TikTok – @christanyc
– Christa’s website –

About Kate:
Kate McGormley is a higher education professional living in Indianapolis with her husband and two sons.  Kate is a champion for mental health advocacy and kindness. She spent 2013 doing a kindness act each day with her young sons and blogging about it at KindnessMatters365. She spends most of her time with family and friends, but also loves serving on the board of her local Habitat for Humanity and occasionally pounding some nails.  Her greatest obsession in life is her English Bulldog, Mack!


A Year of Yes: Lessons on going for broke from Olympic ice skaters

Here’s a lesson we should adopt from Olympic ice skaters: they receive more points for attempting a difficult jump and falling than they do from downgrading the jump to something easier and landing perfectly. Why isn’t that the norm in our entire society. Let’s reward and celebrate one another for daring greatly and failing rather than taking the easy path.


In the pause: This 5th grade basketball team in NJ exemplifies unity and equality

Need a feel-good story to fill your heart today? Here’s one. This 5th grade basketball team voted unanimously to forfeit the rest of their season because they refused to play without the two girls who are on their team. This is what unity and equality look like. So proud of these kids! Warning: you’ll need a tissue when you read the details in the article. It will bring tears to your eyes in the best possible way.

5th grade coed basketball team chooses to forfeit season instead of kicking girls off the team


Wonder: Doing what you’re meant to do

What an exciting night at the Olympic Games! Swimming and gymnastics are two of my favorite sports to watch. I love the passion and the split between individual performance and team achievement. It is an incredible pleasure to watch people striving for greatness, to see them doing exactly what they’re meant to do, what they’ve trained so hard to accomplish. No matter what we love, no matter where we find greatest happiness, let’s do it in that spirit—to put in so much effort, energy, and love that our success is inevitable.


This just in: Time is our best and deepest healer

Time is our best healer
Time is our best healer

On Thursday night I pulled my quadricep playing soccer. I’ll be limping around for the next little while it heals. There’s not much I can do for a pulled muscle except rest it so I’m spending most of this cold rainy weekend inside reading, writing, playing piano, listening to music and podcasts, and working on my next paper collage. Time and creativity make a magical healing duo.


This just in: DC ZogSports Soccer is not casual

Zogsports DC soccer
Zogsports DC soccer

ZogSports DC casual soccer league is not casual. It’s not even close to casual. I think the team we played last night might be semi-professional complete with a playbook, calls, and drill practice several times per week. They were big, fast, and aggressive. Also, we only had two women instead of the required three so we had to play one man down. That means my friend, Logan, and I had to play the entire game. No break. No subs. It was rough. But we hung in there. And we’ll show up again next week. And that’s what counts. This one is a character builder for sure, and by November I’m going to have fabulous legs!


This just in: The power of my new soccer cleats

My new power shoes!
My new power shoes!

I haven’t played a group sport in quite a few years but all that’s about to change when I start playing on a co-ed soccer team this week with Zog Sports DC. When I put on my new cleats and shin guards yesterday, I felt really powerful. And not because I think I’m going to become some brilliant spark of a player but because I’m about to do something so outside my comfort zone.

There’s something to be said for purposely going after experiences that scare the hell out of us. Once we try something new, we understand that on the other side of fear is freedom. GOOOOOOAL!