Ever since I was a little girl, the World Cup has been a huge part of our family. Coming from an Italian background it’s no wonder it’s such a big thing for us. Having qualified for basically every tournament except 1958 and winning 4 separate titles we’re one of the most successful nations in World Cup history.
So when Italy didn’t even make it to the group stages this year we were all a little stunned. The last two tournaments they let us down by getting knocked out at group stages, but to not even make it to groups, now that was unthinkable.
So Italians all over went into this World Cup feeling a little strange, something was definitely missing.
But at least, I had another country to support, my home Australia. When I was a little girl the idea of Australia ever even making it was unthinkable. But thankfully in recent years we’ve finally stepped up and shown the world what we’re made of. However, Australia still has that attitude that if we even make it to groups that’s enough. So whilst I was hoping for a miracle, I wasn’t really counting on them to do much.
And I was proven right when we got knocked out at group stage.
Now who was I to support?
I took to my private Facebook group and everyone gave me their recommendations and reasons.
There were some good arguments for Belgium & Mexico. It seemed most people wanted an underdog to win. But being a loyal girlfriend I decided I’d support England considering that’s where my boyfriend is from.
But try as I might, I just couldn’t find myself wanting to back them. And by the time it got to today’s match against Croatia I reached my limit after being subjected to non-stop “It’s Coming Home” jibes for days on end. So I was well and truly supporting Croatia. AWKWARD when you live in a house with 3 English guys. Oh well, it made the game all the more interesting.
And what a magical finish it was!
So, what can be learnt from the World Cup so far?
There’s been so many upsets. Majority of the traditional winners and favourites were knocked out early and some didn’t even make it to the tournament!
1. Never get too comfortable
Teams like Italy, Brazil, Germany and Argentina have long standing track records of being strong World Cup winners and not one of them made it to the semi finals. Some didn’t even qualify and all were knocked out by teams they never expected would beat them.
I think the biggest lesson here is to never get too comfortable and always be aware and respectful of your competition. You need to adapt and grow with the times and always strive to grow and get better than you currently are.
2. Don’t expect things to be handed to you
I think some of these stronger teams almost went into the World Cup just expecting for it to be easy. They have the world backing them, the odds are in their favour and they expected to just win.
I’m not saying they didn’t train hard and come prepared. But, it’s almost like they think because they’ve got this history of being good, that it’s just going to be handed to them. And when the other countries actually showed up and gave them a bit of competition they didn’t know what to do.
In life and business, things won’t come easy. You’ll need to work hard for the results you want.
3. Strong mindset always wins
Tonight’s match was a true fairytale story.
Croatia, a country with only 4 million people that has only competed in the World Cup 5 times and never made it to a final, knocked out the clear favourite and scored themselves a place in the World Cup final!
It just goes to show that even when the odds are against you, you can achieve the unthinkable. It all comes down to persistence and perseverance and not letting other people’s perceptions and other external influences get inside your head.
Just like business… it all comes back to mindset and determination.
You may not have the most followers. You may not be as advanced in your skills. You may not have it all figured out. People may be telling you it’s never going to work. It may feel like everyone and everything is against you.
But… if your goals are big enough and important enough to you, you can make anything happen!!
4. Back yourself up with results
I think one of the biggest lessons can be taken from the English supporters (sorry guys). Maybe I only noticed them so much because I’m surrounded by English people, but as an outsider looking in it didn’t make sense to me that they were getting so excited when they only just made it through group stages.
Claiming “It’s coming home” and causing a huge fuss as if they’d already won the Cup even though there was still so much more for them to do. And then looking silly when they definitely did not bring it home.
The lesson here. It’s good to be confident, but if you’re going to make big claims, make sure you can back these claims.
There’s nothing worse than over promising the world to a client and then completely under-delivering. Always be honest about your skills and abilities and strive to do the best job, but back your claims up with proof and don’t make promises on things you cannot guarantee.
It’s better to deliver an amazing result and celebrate that result, than to make huge claims and then find yourself falling short.
5. Check your priorities
One thing that has amazed me is people’s dedication to watching these matches. Obviously this kind of thing is better watched live, but for some countries that means waking up in the middle of the night to do this.
And nobody seems to have any issues waking up to watch these games. Yet in business, if I suggest to someone to wake up a little earlier or go to bed a bit later they instantly come up with excuses as to why they can’t do it, or how they don’t have enough time.
If this sounds like you and you’re not happy with where you’re currently at… maybe it’s time you checked your priorities. Because if you want your life to look different come the next World Cup, it’s only going to happen if you make it happen.
Over and out.