EP 35- Nadia Nadim- On Fleeing the Taliban and How to Get Rich and Famous

In today’s episode, I interview Danish footballer Nadia Nadim. Nadia is genuinely one of the happiest people I know. She’s also one of the most confident and unafraid to speak her mind.

Nadia was born in Afghanistan during the war.  At 11 year’s of age, Nadia’s dad, a general in the army,  was killed by the Taliban. Nadia’s mom knew there wasn’t a future for her children in Afghanistan. One night, her family snuck out in the dark and fled the country. They took a plane to Italy, where they were then smuggled in the back of a delivery truck for 48 hours, intending to end up in England. When they arrived, a man walking his dog informed Nadia’s mom that they were actually in Denmark. After finding the police, Nadia’s family was taken to a refuge center.  Nadia’s family patiently awaited approval into the country. If they were denied, they would have to return back to Afghanistan.

While at the refugee center, Nadia was introduced to soccer. She kicked around with the other refugees, whom were from all over the world. One day at a nearby field, Nadia, decided to walk up to the coach of a team during a training session, and through hand gestures, because she didn’t speak Danish, she asked if she could play with the team. The coach let her join and her career was launched. Nadia currently plays club soccer for the Portland Thorns, is a Danish national team member, and is simultaneously studying to become a plastic surgeon.

In our interview, Nadia talks about:

-her family’s escape from the Taliban

-her plans on becoming rich and famous

-balancing medical school and professional soccer

-how Nadia uses getting “pissed off” to her advantage on the field

-the two things that Nadia doesn’t think she’s good at life (she claims to be good at everything else)

-the belief system behind why Nadia knows she can do anything she sets her mind to

I’ve also written an additional article on Nadia  in which she tells stories we didn’t cover in this interview, like the time she lived in a low income city and built a soccer club starting with 7 players, that grew to 217 children.  We talk about the colorful headband she wears on game days, and how the first headband she wore was made by cutting the elastic band off of her underwear,  how she prays 5 times a day, and the other ways she aspires to give hope to refugees.

Read the article  here:  Arrow Liver: Professional Soccer Player, Nadia Nadim

 

 

 

 

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Resources

Additional Article on Nadia Nadim: Arrow Liver: Professional Soccer Player, Nadia Nadim

Follow Nadia Nadim:

Instagram: @nadi9nadim

Twitter:  @Nadia_Nadim

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