Can rage be a positive emotion? It is to Abby Wambach, one of the most celebrated women in U.S. soccer.
Abby recalls a time in 2016, shortly after she retired from professional soccer, when she received an ESPY Icon Award alongside Peyton Manning and the late Kobe Bryant. Initially honored, Abby’s euphoria soon became replaced with rage.
“Their biggest concerns were where they were going to invest their hundreds of millions of dollars that they collectively earned throughout their careers, but my biggest concern was how to pay my mortgage,” the two-time Olympic gold medalist says.
Abby, co-captain of the U.S. Women’s National Team when they clinched the World Cup title in 2015, has been fighting for gender pay equity in women’s sports ever since. In May 2022, that fight paid off. The U.S. Soccer Federation reached a deal to pay female and male players the same. In addition, the U.S. Women’s National Team players won a $24 million pay equity settlement.
Doing hard things is at the core of how Abby lives her life. Together with her wife – Glennon Doyle, bestselling author of Untamed – Abby hosts the We Can Do Hard Things podcast, in which they tackle topics like sex, friendships and mental health.
In today’s episode, Abby talks to Ana and Jamie about how to show up with your authentic self, how to be your own advocate, how to communicate honestly and her six years of sobriety.
- We have been taught to fear feelings of rage. But when harnessed appropriately, rage can unleash your ambition and desire to work toward justice.
- To find your “wolfpack,” don’t run from pain or heartbreak. Run toward it and find other people who share your desire to heal.
- Expect that you and those around you will make mistakes. Embrace your mistakes and strive to do better.
“Everybody is a leader in their own life. Everybody has something inside of them, that they are capable of being exceptional at.” – Abby Wambach
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