If you’ve ever wanted to peek into the mind of one of the world’s most intriguing icons and find out exactly what makes them successful, here’s your chance. Paulo Coelho wrote some of the most popular and inspiring novels of the 21st century, touching the hearts of more than 100 million people in 56 different countries.
“The Alchemist” (Coelho’s most famous novel) has sold more than 150 million copies, becoming one of the best-selling books in history and setting a Guinness World Record for the number of books translated when author is living. Given these facts, it is clear that Coelho really knows many about success and the ways to achieve it.
Here are four tips from Paulo Coelho for becoming successful in life:
1. Be aware of your dreams and fight for them
According to Coelho, successful people must overcome fear and follow their dreams. Speaking of fear of failure, Coelho adds:
“Tell your heart that fear of suffering is worse than suffering itself. And no heart has ever suffered when it sets out to pursue its dreams”.
What is the essence of this statement? When fear takes hold of your soul and you think you’re not good enough, when no one else believes in you, remember your dreams and fight for them. You have everything you need to deal with what life throws at you.
The great author also adds:
“Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but no one has an idea of their own”.
2. You are drowning, not falling into the river, but remaining submerged in it
Coelho had a long road to success, but it is remarkable that he never regretted the mistakes he made, the “wrong” decisions he made, or the painful times he endured. Here’s what he said about it:
“I don’t regret my painful times. I bare my scars as if they were medals. I know that freedom has a high price, as high as slavery; the only difference is that you pay for it with pleasure and a smile, even when that smile is clouded with tears”.
This is the most important life lesson. Like Coelho, I believe we learn more from our failures than from our successes. So the next time you remember one of those unpleasant memories, instead of being sad, try to learn a good lesson from it and move on.
Many of us spend our lives feeling guilty and regretting what we have done (or not done) in the past instead of focusing on what we can do right now. But it’s a mistake. This is a huge waste of time.
Let the past stay in the past and think about the future and the present. Don’t let the “quagmire of the past” pull you back. Remember that you are drowning, not falling into the river, but remaining submerged in it.
3. Don’t be intimidated by other people’s opinions
So we know that all successful people always follow their dreams, right? And if you’re following your dreams, you have to be willing to tolerate criticism and rejection, especially when it comes from people you care about.
“It’s amazing how many people give up their dreams just because someone tells them they can’t do it”.
The truth is, until you follow your heart and not the opinions of others, you will never succeed in life.
“Don’t understand me wrong. I’m not saying you should be rude or disrespectful to others, but there is a fine line between constructive criticism and destructive criticism, caused by jealousy and a desire to humiliate. The key is to distinguish between one and the other”.
Powerful, isn’t it? That’s how talented Coelho is, how finely he feels human nature! Be sure to read his books if you haven’t read it yet.
Here’s another brilliant quote:
“People are capable of doing whatever they dream of doing at any point in their lives”.
4. Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can replace experience
Ooh, that Coelho quote is my favorite. There are so many business coaches, “life teachers” and “successful bloggers” around today, but when you ask them:
- What is your experience?
- What did you know before you started teaching people for becoming succesful in life?
At that point (suddenly!) they stop talking to you and start thinking of you as the enemy.
I consider such people charlatans. You want to teach people? Okay. But teach from your own experience, not someone else’s!
“Nothing can replace real experience. No books or courses. Every entrepreneur, every innovator, and every scientist knows this rule”.
Here is another genious quote by Coelho:
“We will fully understand the miracle of life, feel all its colors only when we allow the unexpected to happen”.
The main reason most people fail in life is not a lack of talent, opportunity, or education, but a refusal to step out of their comfort zone and take significant risks. Most people aren’t brave enough to challenge their boss and ask for a promotion, or quit their job to start a business, or follow a crazy dream.
“People are asleep while their lives pass them by”.
What’s the solution? You need to be different, not follow the crowd. You need to be brave and take risks (where appropriate). Taking risks doesn’t mean going to the casino or betting, but investing all your money in the business you’re willing to dedicate your life to.
No one will believe in you and your dream unless you believe in it yourself. It is this risk that you must take. Neither your boss nor your family will shoulder this burden. It is up to you to do it yourself.
Follow your dreams, fight for them, and never give up. Because that’s the only way to make your life successful, vibrant and fulfilling.