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Don't Give Up

7 years ago I decided to write a book. I was still traveling the world, living in a small town called Minori on the Amalfi Coast. I had a really large apartment, with this huge window peering out into a Monet painting. Graduating hilltops climbed over one another while being swallowed up by homes and lemon farms. The lemons were as big as my head. So I'm supposed to write this book and all but I didn't have much to go on. I had two ideas, the very beginning of a story and the very end. Like falling asleep in the beginning of your flight then waking up once the wheels touched down, the middle didn't exist. I didn't know what the hellp I was doing and I had nothing beyond these two tiny ideas and a laptop. So I just wrote, and I just sucked. I edited when I wasn't supposed to, I didn't research as much as I should have, and I neglected learning pretty much anything. The book was going to be seven chapters at first then I realized I'd have to triple that at least in order to arrive at the very end of the story for “it” to work. I wanted to give up a hundred times, I wanted to allow just one of the excuses to be enough for why I wasn't good enough, experienced enough, clever enough, talented enough, or committed enough. I decided to tell everybody I was writing a book. I knew myself and knew that if I told someone I was doing something, then I had to do it simply out of fear of looking like an undedicated fool. Insecurities can be pretty good motivators. Everything was a lot harder too because I felt that I had to write this book – like my life's outcome teetered on it's very completion. “Jessica wants you to tell a story, to write a book.” Those words were spoken to me 3 days after Jess had passed.

In my mind, and in my heart, I couldn't necessarily give up on such a message, such a challenge from someone I knew was looking out for me. No it didn't make sense, and for most people it still doesn't make sense. But I believed this message was real to me and that's all that mattered. I knew, that Jess knew, that me writing a book meant I was going to discover something about myself or life in general which would ultimately serve to free me from the anguished grief over her death. She was right. I knew that by writing this book that it wasn't about publishing it and landing on the NY Times best selling list, it was about the journey getting to “the end” and all that would be revealed along the way. This challenge was some unknown summit for my soul's evolution because I didn't have any plans for myself and I was in no state of mind to make any either. This book, and the challenge of writing it, had a gravity which began pulling me toward something other than the darkness, I didn't know at the time what would come of it, I just trusted and committed. 7 years ago I began and just this past weekend I finally published that book. Yes the story is awesome, I truly believe that. I learned how to write, I improved my craft, I researched, and I dedicated a thousand nights tapping away on my keyboard and a thousand notes into my phone. I never gave up, and it was sooooo hard at times, like impossible kind of hard. I felt crazy at times, like some lost bereaved man trying to prove something to the world. I felt vulnerable sharing so many intimate details about my life and about love. I felt guilty for having the weight of this story and my previous relationship press down upon my current relationship with my fiancé, Suzy. I felt doubtful that it would suck. I felt scared that I'd never conquer the hundred tasks for self-publishing. I felt worried that I'd fail. But I never allowed myself to stay in any doubtful space for too long. I told myself it's not about the summit of publishing but rather the journey there. I began really watching myself experience writing this book while living the life I had to live in order to inspire the story. Then it clicked, this story, this book was about my growth, my healing and evolution into someone very different than that man peering out into the valley of lemon farms 7 years ago. The book needed a happy ending in a sense, (it's an epic ending actually) so my life needed to mirror that ending ahead of time so that I could tell that story. How beautiful is that? That's why she challenged me, so that I would know a happy ending. I became someone else entirely, a man filled with self-love, endless gratitude, an empowered mindset, a deep spiritual connection, a new beautiful bride to be, a perfect son, and a life teaching others how to replicate this very thing for themselves. Oh… and one other thing; a published author. I plan to write for as long as I can because I've got a lot my stories to share. And in order to keep on inspiring these stories, I've got a lot more life to live too. Our dreams are there because they're the one thing to catapult us into the person we're meant to become, an evolved version of ourselves who know a life of happiness and fulfillment. It's not easy pursuing your dreams, that's the point. The growth, the lessons, the healing… they're wrung from the challenge. Don't give up on your dreams, the future version of yourself is waiting on the other end of the rainbow and they have something very beautiful to share with you. This, I can promise. If you'd like to read my novel, please click on the link below to get your copy today. I also promise it will be a fun journey. Read: Dreams of Antiquity If you'd like some help finding your way by learning how to wield the power of your mind and spirit, well there's some good new as 3 spots have opened up within my 1 on 1 mentorship program! Click below to discover more. I'm grateful for you, Joe

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