Erikjan Lantink
3 min readJul 18

When we travel as a family to different places and we can visit a bookstore, we make it happen.

My daughter has inherited her love for books, bookstores, and libraries from my mother. Wherever we go, one of her first things to find out is the location of the bookstores.

Reykjavik, Iceland was no different.

We spent the first two days of our fortnight in Iceland in the capital of Reykjavik and included a walk downtown and a visit to bookstores in our plans. The walk ended in a bookstore conveniently located right next to our hotel.

I bought two books: 1. Think Like a Monk and 2. Life worth living. Especially the introduction of the second book called “This book might wreck your life” sparked my interest. It’s the introduction to a book that guides you to what matters most in life.

I didn’t read the book while traveling through Iceland.

We listened to audiobooks while driving, and in the evenings, I re-read The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho. If you read the book, you recognized the title for this Insight. I’ll come back to that a little later.

Allow me first to write a few words about Iceland.

Iceland is, by far, the most beautiful country I’ve ever visited, and I’ll certainly return. Nature is overwhelmingly beautiful wherever you look.

Gorgeous mountain ranges, volcanoes (one erupted while we were there), lava fields, tectonic plates, glaciers, geysers, lagoons, rivers, waterfalls, picturesque villages, houses, restaurants, and friendly people (most of them).

In two weeks, we drove around the island, staying in different places almost every night, making time to take in all the beauty Iceland offers.

I had a lot of time to think.

Inspired by Iceland, the title of the books I had bought, the Alchemist, the audiobooks, and the conversations with family.

In my case, books, conversation, and inspiring places always lead to reflection and new ideas.

And to questions that need an answer.

One of the questions I raised for myself is whether the way I’ve designed and organized my life still serves its purpose.

Erikjan Lantink

Business & Leadership coach. Interim Leader. Writer. Speaker. Former Retail Executive (general management; operations; HR)