Lunch & Learn: Adapting To Change with Issy Bailey

Paralympian shooter, Issy Bailey, talks to us about change and reaching the summit.

Learning and development is something that is hugely important to us at Tandem Bank, whether that is educating ourselves about different aspects of Tandem, or educating ourselves about wider social issues. It’s something we take seriously and something that everyone at Tandem enjoys. We have been holding Lunch and Learn sessions for 3 years and they are designed to encourage the team to share stories on topics that are particularly important to them. We have hosted sessions on Pride, Women in business, Ramadan and Technology updates - these sessions are designed for us to learn from each other, stay educated and feel connected.

Last week we were lucky to have Team GB Paralympian Issy Bailey join us. Issy is part of the Great Britain Shooting Team, having moved swiftly through the ranks after she was injured in a serious car crash in 2013. Issy’s injuries left her paralysed from the hips down and she is now in a wheelchair - she had to completely change her life and learn how to adapt. Issy was introduced to shooting after another patient suggested she tried it as a way to get active again as higher intensity sport was too painful due to her healing injuries. Issy was introduced to GB pistol coach Vlad Filimonov and as they say, the rest is history!

Issy’s chance encounter with Vlad gave her her thirst for competitive sport back and meant that she didn’t have as much time to focus on her injury as she was too busy competing. Issy taught us a huge amount in her talk with us, particularly about resilience and perseverance. With life completely changed for many of us at the moment, Issy taught us that the worst thing we can do is give up. She also taught us that now is the perfect opportunity for you to develop if you have the time, whether that be in your fitness, education, or work. With the paralympics being postponed for another year, Issy and her teammates are having to wait a full 365 days longer to compete in something they have trained four years for - but they aren’t going to rest on their laurels and wait until Tokyo 2021 comes around. The team are coming up with a new training plan, lots of it having to be done at home or using online systems. Here at Tandem we are also adapting to how we work, train, and communicate with each other.

Issy’s story and success taught us that a lot is possible if you put your mind to it. With our lives and situations constantly changing and evolving, we must build up resilience and know to persevere when things get tough. We can’t control everything in our lives, but we can control how we respond to situations, and Issy’s story has inspired us all to change how we see things slightly and make the most of any situation. Surround yourself with people that will make a positive difference to your life and help you see and react to things in a positive way.

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