Every Athlete's Challenge: Going from "on-field stardom" to "sideline has-been" is brutal. No more autographs, applause, million-dollar contracts, front-page photos, and product endorsements. Retirement is more than the end of a job – it feels like death. Read Full Story >

What is transition? Face it: Transition is a fact of life – your life. Whether you’re willing to admit it or not – transition has been a part of your life in the past, is a part of your life now, and will be a part of your life in the future.

When you went from high school to college and from college to the pros you experienced transition. If you are married, if you were traded or changed teams, if you bought a house – you experienced transitions that are a part of every player’s life.

Some transitions are planned, some are unexpected, and some are unpredictable. Some are because of an event happening and some are caused because an event didn’t happen.

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From the Palace to the Streets. Going from "on-field super star" to "NFL has-been" is brutal. No more autographs, applause, million-dollar contracts, front-page photos, and product endorsements. Retirement is more than the end of a job. It feels like death.

"I know you! Wait... don't tell me... you used to be..."

You were once treated like the royalty of our American culture. Now, after leaving the game, it feels like you've been kicked out of the palace and left with the harsh realities of unfamiliar life on the streets of the "real" world. And it's a challenge to stay out of the gutter of life.

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Identifying Your Transferable Skills

Wouldn’t it be great? “Wanted: retired NFL lineman to protect CEO from hostile takeovers.” Or, “Company desires retired NFL free safety to intercept disgruntled clients at customer service counter.” If only transition were that easy – but, it’s not.

As a player you had great skills. It’s what helped you become one of the best football players in the world. That’s no easy task – and the same skills that helped you become a dominating football player on your way to the NFL will help you dominate your field in your next career.

The trick is to identify those skills that helped make you a successful ball player and transfer them into life after football.

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You thought you were an average NFL spender, or maybe you were even conservative with your money when you played. They might have even nicknamed you “squeaky” because that’s the sound your wallet makes when you open it every month.

It takes time to financially transition into a new season of life after leaving the game, to understand how difficult it is to earn a living and that not everyone buys a new car every year, and that “getting ahead” in life is something you have already done -- something most of your peers are still trying to do.

I’ve put together an “exchange rate” that can help you better understand the value of what you have achieved and what the realities of the “real world” are – the realities of what your non-NFL peers have been doing while you have been playing ball.

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