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It was 1880.Niccolo Paganini, known as one of the greatest violinists of all time, was about to perform to a sold-out opera house in Italy.But right before the performance, he ran backstage in a complete panic.The stage manager shouted, “Niccolo! Hurry! You’re on in five minutes!”With barely a minute left before showtime, Niccolo rushed into a tiny room and grabbed his violin.He ran onstage in the nick of time.And—to the great delight to his audience—proceeded to give the performance of his life.The crowd went WILD…Thunderous applause…A standing ovation that seemed to never end.When Niccolo finally arrived backstage, the stage manager rushed over and asked, “WHAT HAPPENED before the performance? You were running around like a crazy man…and usually, you’re so calm?”Niccolo explained, “I couldn’t find my Stradivarius. So, I just grabbed some random violin before going on stage.”He reflected a minute and then said. “You know… I’m really glad it happened… I learned the most important lesson ever…“I learned that the music is not the violin. The music is in me.”What a great story.Isn’t it comforting to know that we don’t need something external to succeed?Our unique talents are already inside of us.We just need to see that them.But sometimes it’s HARD to see our own magic.

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