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Olympian Noelle Pikus-Pace Talks Achieving Goals With an "Ultimate Bucket List"

Noelle Pikus-Pace won a silver medal in the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia, but she isn’t done making goals.

Ever since she was a 5-year-old determined to ski down the mountain faster than her siblings, the athlete has had big dreams—only they haven’t always gone according to plan.

In a blog post on churchofJesusChrist.org, the skeleton racer said she never expected to be hit by a 1600-pound bobsled when she was at the top of her sport. She never thought she would finish in fourth place during the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada, or miscarry three children.

“Trials can stop us in our tracks,” she writes in the blog post. “They can literally take our breath away. When this happens, what do we do? How do we move forward? Throughout these trials my husband, Janson, and I have often thought, ‘This chapter in our life has ended, so how do we turn the page?’”

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After achieving her Olympic dream, Pikus-Pace and her husband wanted to continue developing their talents and reaching for new goals. Even if those goals seemed small or insignificant, they put them down on their “Ultimate Bucket List” of things to look forward to “learn, do, see, earn, have, or become” during their lives.

Since first making their list, Pikus-Pace and her husband accomplished two major goals by moving to Costa Rica, where Noelle learned to speak Spanish as Janson pursued a master’s degree. They've also added new goals to their list, like learning about 20 different constellations and the mythology behind them. Each day, they also spend 10 minutes seeking for guidance from Heavenly Father on becoming who they want to become. The experience has taught them both a valuable lesson about living life to its fullest.

“Once we realize that this life is never meant to compare ourselves with others but to connect with them, our fears of perfection and judgment will fade,” writes Pikus-Pace. “Our legacy is left by sharing our talents, skills, and what we have learned with others and by helping others to become the best version of themselves possible. Life isn’t meant to be endured; it’s meant to be lived!”

READ THE FULL STORY AT churchofJesusChrist.org.



Image title The life lessons learned by Olympic athlete Noelle Pikus Pace can equip each of us to turn daily choices and challenges into opportunities for growth. In her warm and relatable style, Noelle shares touching personal stories and teaches how these experiences can help us keep a healthy perspective on the things that matter most. She helps us to see that though all of our goals and trials are different, we each can choose to become the best versions of ourselves one day at a time. Covering topics from letting go of expectations and pressures to finding a healthy life balance, from standing up for ourselves to standing for righteousness, world champion Noelle Pikus Pace infuses readers with the enthusiasm and confidence to get a little closer to their goals each and every day.

Danielle christensen

Danielle Christensen

Danielle is a features writer and editor for LDS Living. Previously, she served as web producer for Church News, where she managed their website and social media platforms. Danielle is a graduate of Brigham Young University in English and has been published with Deseret NewsChurch NewsBYU Magazine, and Spires Intercollegiate Arts and Literary Magazine.

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