This past weekend I literally couldn’t put down Libby Riddles’ biography, Race Across Alaska.
Riddles was the first woman to win the 1,200-mile Iditarod sled dog race from Anchorage to Nome. She won because she braved a blizzard that forced her competitors to hunker down in towns serving as checkpoints.
Instead, she went onward. Then, when the wind became overwhelming, she zippered herself with her sleeping bag into the bag on her sled. She waited about 12 hours until the wind died down. That’s a test of her mental strength. This, after going for only a few hours of sleep a day for about two weeks.
Riddles wrote something near the end of her book that made me reflect.
She thought of herself as a sled dog owner, not a woman sled dog owner. But, she wrote, if her winning the Iditarod encouraged other women not to underestimate themselves, then she’s happy that she helped.
I believe that women’s accomplishments show other women, that yes, it can be done. Whatever “it” is.
It doesn’t have to be as heroic as winning a huge race. It can be a life with your challenges bravely met.
That’s how to lead.