In The Beginning…

Hi, welcome to my blog! My name is Alexis Hornbuckle and I want to take you on my journey through the past, present and future. Some of you may already know who I am, and some of you have never heard of me. So, I’ll start from the beginning. The reason I’m starting this blog is to let you get to know the real me. That’s right, flaws and all!  I’m talking all the chaos, tough decisions, bad choices, hard work, ups and downs, life changing events, and more. All of which have led me to and from success. The hardest thing to do as a professional athlete (in my opinion) is bare your naked truths. Wish me luck. Here I go!

First, let me give you a quick look at my background. I was born in Charleston, West Virginia to two of the most amazing parents, Jerome and Quandora Hornbuckle. I have an older brother, Cedric, who is a big piece to my puzzle of success. I grew up in the church. Both of my grandfathers pastored their own churches, and both of my parents are ministers. I grew up loving Jesus Christ and I still do to this day.  The deeper I strengthen my faith, the more I love Him. I’m a living testimony that keeping God first – even though I’m far from perfect – will always make things all right in the end. That doesn’t mean I never faced hardship, failed, felt overwhelmed, or completely ruined opportunities for myself. It simply means that despite all of that, I still have a story of success.

Don’t worry I’m not here to deliver a sermon…stick with me!

Ok, so how did I get into basketball? Well, my brother and I are only 15 months apart, so of course I wanted to do everything my big brother did, especially play sports. My dad played and coached basketball; a couple of my uncles coached basketball; most of my cousins played, and my big brother played as well. Despite all of that, basketball was still not my first love. Soccer had my heart, and I couldn’t get enough of it. So, at age 4 my journey of competitive sports began for both soccer and basketball. It’s funny because even though I truly felt like soccer was for me more than basketball, I always could be found dribbling a ball or shooting hoops. I guess it was just natural, but it was not yet my passion.

My dad could see that Cedric and I took on his athleticism and aptitude for the game of basketball. This led him to ask us a simple question, “How good do you want to be?” He was not going to waste his time or our time forcing us to play a sport if we were not truly invested. The way our parents raised us was simple. If you’re going to do something, then do it to the best of your ability, and strive to be the best! Teaching us to think like that created confident, hard-working, and relentless young individuals. If we didn’t understand something, then we asked questions for clarity so that we could go back and practice things the right way. You see, we understood early that practicing bad habits would create a by-product of mediocrity. How can you strive for greatness while practicing being mediocre? It’s quite simple, YOU CAN’T!!!

We all have heard the saying, “practice makes perfect.” Well, I hate to burst your bubble, but that is not true! Take the time today to reshape your thinking and realize that “perfect practice makes perfect! What does this mean? It simply means if I want to become a better ball handler, I cannot practice dribbling off the palm of my hand, have my head down while staring at the basketball, or only do drills with my dominant hand. Instead, I must train by pounding the rock while controlling it with my fingertips, have my eyes up for better court vision, and master every drill using both hands. I say all of this not to just prepare you to become a better ball handler (not in this entry anyway), but to differentiate between practicing just to practice and practicing to be great. This illustration gives you insight on how my competitive personality was born from the mentality that my parents instilled in me at a young age.

Now that you know who I am and where I come from, taking you on this journey just got a little easier for me. Let me know in the comments if you can relate to having a competitive mentality at a young age.