Episode 9: Connor Carrick – On Life in the NHL, Mindset Mastery & Coffee

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Episode 009 Connor Carrick – On Life in the NHL, Mindset Mastery & Coffee

NHL defenseman and mental health advocate, Connor Carrick joins the podcast to share his experiences balancing training, nutrition, and the grind of being a professional athlete. In this episode, Dr. Stephanie and Connor talk all about how mindset affects performance on and off the ice. They discuss failure, adapting to change, and the importance and necessity of self-sacrifice. Finally, Connor shares his long-terms goals and speaks to how he plans to approach life after the NHL.


01:05 – Introducing today’s guest, Connor Carrick 

04:11 – Connor’s NHL origin story 

08:56 – Connor recaps his time with the Washington Capitals 

10:04 – What it was like to be traded to Toronto 

13:26 – The mental toll of being traded multiple times 

18:11 – Joining the New Jersey Devils 

20:10 – Connor touches on his struggles with mental health 

26:21 – Short-term vs. long-term mindsets 

32:45 – Techniques and strategies Connor implements for longevity in the NHL 

34:36 – The importance of diet and nutrition 

39:12 – Connor’s performance and training regiment 

43:28 – The specific skills necessary to be a professional hockey player 

45:36 – Connor speaks to the sacrifices he, his wife Lexi, and their family have made for his career 

50:33 – Making effort cool again 

53:24 – Life post-NHL

56:46 – Connor answers some rapid-fire questions about one of his passions: coffee 

59:57 – Where listeners can follow Dr. Stephanie and subscribe to her newsletter


“There’s something to be said about being a Toronto Maple Leaf. It means something in Toronto. It means something to people. It’s an Original Six franchise. There’s so much history and expectation there.” (11:31) 

“The NHL game, every ten games let’s say, is played at a different pace. So, every team at ten games is a different team at twenty. Every team at twenty is a way better team at forty.” (19:06) 

“I play a sport that, if you ask any GM, any coach, any player for that matter, what percentage of the game is mental, you’re not gonna get a percentage lower than eighty.” (23:57) 

“I think athletics puts you uniquely in touch with that because you know you can go sprint and run as fast as you can or jump as high as you want. You can’t just go faster because you want to. It’s hard. It takes a lot of work.” (30:24) 

“If you don’t have a skill and you can’t skate, this game is not going to be friendly to you.” (33:49) 

“The concept of making effort cool again, I relate to that greatly.” (51:40) 


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Connor’s Instagram – @connorcarrick

Connor’s Twitter – @connorcarrick

Connor’s Facebook


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  • Dr. Stephanie Estima
  • Connor Carrick

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