They say that success comes to those who dare to dream big. But without action, a dream will just stay a dream to be forgotten. Late Steve Jobs once said, “Start small, think big. Don’t worry about too many things at once. Take a handful of simple things, to begin with, and then progress to more complex ones. Think about not just tomorrow but the future. Put a ding in the universe.”
And while quotes like this serve as inspiration to millions of people around the world, Maeurn Smiles that true inspiration and motivation only comes within. “You’re the only one that can actually motivate yourself,” she says. “You are the only one who can make you get up in the morning and do whatever it takes to pursue your dreams and goals.”
Three years ago, Maeurn Smiles was just another daydreamer, hoping that life would magically improve for the better. Days passed, and nothing happened. She was still stuck in the same rut, fighting to survive yet another day until she decided to take fate into her hands. And it wasn’t easy for her to make that decision and pull herself out of the muddy and impoverished streets of Cebu, Philippines. Maeurn was her family’s only breadwinner, and many hungry mouths depended on her job as an English teacher.
“I made a promise to my family that I would take care of them until the day I died. But the job wasn’t enough to make ends meet, as it paid only $1 per hour,” says Maeurn. “I knew that I could make a better future for them and for myself somewhere else, so I made the hardest decision in my life. I left home and moved to Manila.”
A brave decision completely transformed Maeurn’s life, as three years later, she became a successful entrepreneur, real estate investor, and one of Instagram’s favorite models and influencers. She points out that there were a lot of ups and downs during these past three years, but thanks to her dedication and persistence, she managed to amass quite a following and fulfill her dream of living a lush life.
She started from scratch with a simple Instagram account, but thanks to her dedication and persistence, Maeurn’s Instagram currently boasts over 1 million loyal followers. “When I started Instagram, I was about 18, and I had a really small following. I was posting pictures multiple times a day, but I soon realized that you couldn’t gain much from hashtags,” says Maeurn. “That’s when I decided to build my following by buying a lot of marketing. I would get on meme pages, I’d jump on trendy music reels that were going viral, and then I’d just get views and follows.”
And as she built her following, money started to pour in. Numerous brands wanted Maeurn to be the face of their products, and she gladly accepted. She loved the newfound independence as she could easily afford the things she wanted and take care of her family’s every financial need. But a wise person always thinks one step ahead.
Maeurn knew that depending on one income stream could easily become disastrous, so she decided to expand her endeavors into real estate and crypto. “I was at the point in my life where I didn’t need anyone else, but I also didn’t want to be stuck being just an Instagram model,” she says. ”That’s why I connected with a lot of people during these three years. They taught me so many ways you can make money off the Internet, and I chose to invest in crypto. On top of that, I saw an excellent opportunity in the real estate industry and gathered a team of experts who help me buy, restore, and rent properties.”
All of this wouldn’t be possible if Maeurn didn’t gather the courage to leave everything and everyone behind, and that’s her advice for all dreamers out there. “Don’t be afraid to dream big, but at the same time, don’t be afraid to take action no matter the price,” she says. “I left my whole family behind because I didn’t want to be stuck in an environment where I couldn’t become successful. I knew even back then that I would never regret my decision, no matter what happens in the future. It will be hard, and you will question your decision each day. But it all goes away when you reach your destination.”
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