At the age of sixteen Arianna Stasinopoulos moved from Greece to England after having won a scholarship to study at Cambridge University. Graduating with a M.A in Economics and having written eleven books on cultural history and politics , Arianna launched the Huffington post in May 2005. Time magazine names Arianna Huffington one of the world’s hundred most influential people. She had her heart set on going to Cambridge at thirteen years old, and made it happen, she never let go of her dream, and look at her thriving now!
I recently read a book called “The Element, how finding your passion changes everything.” which is filled with stories about how people chose not to follow the norm and stuck with their gut feeling and never gave up on what they truly wanted to do when they grew up! While reading this book I came across an interview between Oprah and Arianna Huffington which was great- Click here to watch! However back to the book- here are a few success stories I have sumarised.
Paulo Coelho– best selling author of The Alchemist, was locked up in a mental institution 3 times from the age of 17! His strict Catholic parents thought he must be mad wanting to be a writer and insisted on him becoming a lawyer. He escaped when he was 20, went on to travel, and became a song writer in Brazil. Then one day when walking more then 500 miles on the Road of Santiago de Compostela in north western Spain, he had what he calls a spiritual awakening and left his high earning job as a song writer to pursue writing full time.
The Alchemist , the book that made Paulo Cohil famous, has inspired millions around the world and celebrities such as Will Smith, Madonna, Bill Clinton , Oprah Winfrey and Pharell Williams , just to name a few. The book is about how a young shepherd travels to find treasure, but it turns out to be about the journey of discovering the treasure within.
Gillian was a disruptive and hyperactive child, disturbing her fellow classmates and constantly looking for attention. Her teachers wanted to send her to a special needs school, and so her mother, in a desperate attempt to get help, took her to a psychologist. Twenty minutes later, the psychologist took Gillian’s mother aside and said “You know, Mrs Lynne, Gillian isn’t sick. She’s a dancer. Take her to dance school.
So her mother took her to dance school every week. Gillian went on to get accepted into the Royal Ballet School in London, and eventually met Andrew Lloyd Webber and created some of the most successful productions of all time including Cats and The Phantom of the Opera. The psychologist didn’t suggest giving her medication or try to change her , he said let her embrace her energy and be who she is… and look who she turned out to be!
Creator of the Simpsons, Matt Groening , was told to find a new dream as being a cartoonist just wasn’t going to cut it. With no encouragement from his parents or teachers, he says he knew how his future was supposed to look, go to high school, then college, then get a good job etc. – however Matt says, “ I made a decision that I was going to live by my wits. And by the way, I didn’t think it was gonna work. I thought I was going to be working at some lousy job, doing something that I hated.” You see he just could not picture himself not drawing cartoons all day. He found friends who had the same interests and they use to spend Friday night’s drawing while everyone else was at football games. Not long after he moved to LA after school , his success began and eventually The Simpsons was created- and is still running 19 years later! His determination and the help of like-minded people has made him the successful man he is today. He never let go of his dream!
“The Element, how finding your passion changes everything.” is a very interesting read and a good little pick me up.
Have a great weekend!