Krishana Routt-Jackson with the City of Charlotte’s department of Neighborhood & Business Services

Unbound: Krishana Routt-Jackson

The Unbound blog series explores the literature that helps shape the minds of our government leaders. The series begins with Krishana Routt-Jackson (Neighborhood & Business Services). Approaching her one-year work anniversary with the City of Charlotte as the as Mayor’s Youth Employment Program Public Sector & Non-profit Internship Manager, Routt-Jackson works to grow and develop Charlotte’s youth workforce.

You’re helping us kick-off our blog series where City of Charlotte employees identify a book that has had an impact on their personal or professional life. What’s the title of your book and what is it about?

My book is The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. It’s about a Shepard boy named Santiago who follows an actual dream that entices him to seek out a treasure in Egypt. He ends up following this dream, giving up his belongings to embark on this journey. The book follows the ups and downs of his travels as he learns valuable life lessons and realizes that his ultimate dream is worth sacrificing everything for.

When did you first read this title, and what initially drew you to read this book?

I first read the book in spring 2015 while preparing to graduate from college. My mentor encouraged me to read the book. He spoke so profoundly about how the book inspired his path, so I knew I had to read it.

What about this book left an impression on you?

It’s a book about finding and unlocking your full potential. That’s something that is relevant to anyone. It’s really about focusing on your journey and carving out a path that defines your life. In the book, Santiago faces multiple roadblocks that could’ve knocked him off his path, but he continued on, knowing what was at stake. As Santiago’s story progresses, he learns that his journey and his destiny not only belong to him, but are a part of the Soul of the World. In essence, the impacts of his actions expand beyond his being and have an influence on the world around him.

Personally, it started my journey of knowing and loving myself; which impacts my professional world because I show up to work complete, knowing who I am and where I am going.

What’s one quote, passage or moment in the book that stands out to you?

On the journey to find his treasure, Santiago meets an alchemist who has the ability to create gold. Santiago asks the alchemist to share with him the secret of making gold, but in turn the alchemist tells him that the secret to Santiago’s treasure is in his heart. It was a moment that translates to real life — no one can give you the secret to finding your destiny, or in Santiago’s case, his treasure. You have to find it within yourself to reach your dreams.

In three words, how would you define this book?

Soul. Unleashing. Wisdom.

Krishana’s last read: Small Great Things

Krishana’s current read: The Metropolitan Revolution

Keep track of our Unbound featured books on Good Reads.