Defying Mediocrity

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So, what’s stopping you?

Fear of the unknown? Of failure? Judgment?

There is a very standard reaction to dreamers in today’s society.

There’s the eye roll, the sarcasm, the twisted look of disapproval. Sometimes, you’re just met with silence.

Imagine that. Chasing your dreams is so “novel” that people don’t even know how to respond to it.

Well, whether you’re reading this as a dreamer or a doubter, I would like to introduce you to someone that has changed my life- someone who I hope will also change yours. (If he hasn’t already)

Ladies and gentlemen, I introduce to you, Paulo Coelho.

You may recognize his name even if you haven’t read his work. His quotes have circulated the internet for many years, and for good reason.

He is the author of the best-selling novel, The Alchemist, which is likely to be the first of many books you read by him. It is definitely his most famous piece. (Although, surprisingly not my favorite of his)

More than his books though, I want you to know about him.

Paulo Coelho is by far one of the most interesting people I’ve come across, and one of my biggest sources of inspiration.

Coelho knew from a very young age that he wanted to write. His family, a well-respected family from Rio de Janeiro, had very different plans for him. They wanted him to follow in his father’s footsteps of engineering or perhaps consider a career in law.

They grew so concerned about his ambitions and his disdain for a traditional path that they had him committed to a mental institution. They did this to him not once, but three times in total. (Many years later, they said how much they regretted it)

To them, and to much of society then, Coelho’s dreams weren’t ambitious or respectable enough. Yet, look where he is now. 

It took Coelho many years and many diversions to find success, but he did. No matter how many obstacles he met, (and I assure you there were a lot more I’m not sharing here) he pursued his passion. He chased after his dream.

Originally, his most famous book only sold nine hundred copies in Brazil. Today, it is one of the world’s most popular novels and Coelho is one of the most wildly successful authors of all-time.

He continues to inspire more every day.

So now, remind me again, what’s stopping you?

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