I Discovered a Secret to Success in Iceland

I spent Easter weekend in Iceland.

For some reason we chose not to rent a beach villa in southern Spain and instead visited a country that was snowing, windy, and freezing cold.

Luckily, our first two days were gorgeous and sun-soaked. But the last day was bitterly cold and sleeting sideways with 50 km/hour winds.

So we found a local indoor thermal pool to lounge away the day that was filled with Icelanders.

To get to the pool, we passed a soccer field where a small group of teenage boys were actually out in the elements playing soccer.

It was dark and dreary, and the wind was cranking so hard that I couldn’t even open my car door.

The boys were completely soaked and caked with mud, and I was absolutely inspired by their commitment and dedication to the sport.

It was a holiday weekend. They could have been lounging in their warm house in front of the TV, but instead they were out in on the soccer field in freezing weather.

For those of you who don’t follow soccer, Iceland has a population of 329,000 people and an incredible national team. Last year for the European Cup, they beat England in a heroic victory to advance to the quarter finals.

In fact, Iceland has beat the U.S. national team twice (and nearly a third time in 2016). That’s like the city of Cincinnati beating the entirety of the rest of the U.S. in a competition. So it’s astounding that this tiny island nation can assemble such powerhouse soccer talent.

Well, I saw one reason why on that blustery day.

Whether it’s raining, snowing, sleeting sideways, or a rare heat wave, I imagine those kids are out there on the field playing soccer.

Think about the work you’re most passionate about. Are you out there on the field no matter what the weather: any time, any clime?

Pursuing your dreams is a daily commitment, which is another reason why it’s so important to pursue work you LOVE + FEEL CALLED to do.

Because if you love it, all the wind cranking practices will be worth it. And if you stay committed, you can be the tiny powerhouse that outperforms the big box store or the well established writer, artist, or coach.

You can count on having days when all you want to do is stay inside under a blanket instead of facing the elements. When that happens, ask yourself this question: What do I really need to keep going?

Sometimes what you actually need is to rest or to go on vacation (might I recommend the south of Spain in April). And when you’ve had your rest, then it’s time to take a few deep breaths and run back on the field.

Iceland’s national team introduced the world to one of the coolest sports chants I’ve ever seen: the Viking thunder chant. (In fact, the Minnesota Vikings American football team intends to copy it, which I find utterly unimaginative.)

I’ll leave you with a video of the Icelandic National Team returning home from the Euro last summer. Whether you’ve seen this before or not, I encourage you to watch it again.

Last but not least, I challenge you to commit yourself to your vision no matter if the sun is shining or not. The world needs and is waiting for what you have to offer.

To you + your dreams,
Allyson

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