Connect with us

Strive Stories




gary vee story

Gary Vaynerchuk is the forward-thinking entrepreneur who has mastered the art of commanding attention. He’s currently the CEO of Vayner Media, a full-service advertising agency that helps fortune 1000 company’s leverage consumer attention. On top of this, he’s also the Chairman of Vayner X, a modern-day communications holding company, a five-time New York Times best selling author, a highly sought after public speaker, and a prolific angel investor. Needless to say, Gary knows a thing or two about success, as such, we aim to unpack some of his success secrets in this Gary Vaynerchuk Success Story special.

“Work Hard. Work Smart. Be Patient.”

– gary vee –

Gary Vee, as he’s come to be known, is a successful businessman and multimillionaire, and his inspiring success story can both teach and guide us in a variety of ways.  So, with that being said, let’s dive in to the makings of this successful entrepreneur, to see what his story can teach us.


Gary Vee Story of Success

Early Life | Gary Vaynerchuk Success Story

In 1978, when Gary Vaynerchuk was just three years old, he and his family immigrated to the U.S. from Belarus, a country which at the time was part of the former Soviet Union. His family first lived in Queens New York with relatives, but they would eventually move to Edison, New Jersey. [1]

His father initially took a job as a stock boy in a liquor store. And like most immigrants do, he worked his tail off and was smart with every penny he earned for many years.

Eventually this allowed Gary’s father to slowly but surely gain full ownership of his own liquor store.

Gary Vaynerchuk Hustle Quote

Gary would learn much from his father about hard work and hustle, and would get introduced to entrepreneurship at the young age of six. His first taste of entrepreneurship actually came from his experimenting with selling flowers.

Legend has is, that Gary would take flowers from his neighbor’s yard, and then ring the doorbell of that neighbor and with charisma and wit, successfully sell the neighbors’ own flowers back to them.

Gary’s taste for entrepreneurship would grow, and by the age of 7, he was already running a successful lemonade franchise throughout New Jersey, where he had managed to set up 8 different lemonade stands, using his friends to run each location.

However, it was at the age of 13 when Gary Vee would really get his first taste of entrepreneurial success. His breakthrough would come from his ability to generate thousands of dollars every weekend through the selling of baseball cards. Gary learned much about the concept of supply and demand in these formative years.

Related: 35 Inspiring Quotes on Hustle

The Grind

Gary would eventually get pulled into his father’s business; where he was initially put to work bagging ice for $2 an hour. Gary would go on to work for his father for a handful of years in various roles within the family business.

However, after Gary learned about the power of the internet, he would go all in to improve his father’s business. And shortly after graduating from college, Gary would begin leveraging social media and strategic content creation in a way that would take his father’s business from $3 million in annual revenue to $60 million in just a few short years.

How did he do it? Gary set his father’s business up on the internet, renamed the liquor store business to Wine Library. Then, in 2006, he went on to create an extremely entertaining and educational show (called Wine Library TV) that showcased his analyses of various wines and liquors.

Gary leveraged his keen knowledge of wines, his energetic personality, and his consistent daily hustle to create over 1000 episodes to grow the viewership of the show over a five year period. On top of this, Gary paid special attention to what his audience was interested in, wanted more of, and then effectively executed on providing them the engagement and answers they wanted to see.

The result? An explosion in revenue growth for his father’s liquor store!

In his own words, this is what Gary has had to say about his initial success with Wine Library:

“I’ve always credited the success of that venture to my hustle and single-minded dedication to engaging with my fans and customers by answering every email or blog comment I received and going overboard to show my appreciation for their business.” – Gary Vaynerchuk

The Next Chapter

After dramatically growing his father’s business, Gary would start the next chapter of his entrepreneurial career. Taking what he learned from his success with Wine Libary TV, Gary would then leverage his seasoned social media expertise to create his own full-service advertising agency. He would name this new endeavor Vayner Media.

Gary started small with Vayner Media. In fact, in his early days, he had to use another company’s conference room, because he didn’t have the capital to rent the office space that would allow him to have his own.

But, he persisted, and did what he does best. He hustled to get attention, and that attention translated into business. And, after giving a successful public speech in New York, Gary’s media agency would take off.[2]

Shortly there after, Gary would also ink his first million dollar 10-book deal with HarperCollins. Since then, he’s published multiple books with five of them landing on the New York Time’s Best Seller list.

Now, Gary runs Vayner Media as the CEO, is the chairman of Vayner X, and has since become synonymous with hustle, execution, and digital advertising. And when he’s not helping his client’s build their businesses, he is jet setting across the globe inspiring the next generation of entrepreneurs with his charismatic and thought-provoking public speeches.

Related: 50 Gary Vee Quotes on Success + Life

Gary Vee’s Enduring Success

Gary Vee’s success continues to grow as he currently employs over 800 people at his media companies. He currently has over 12 million social media followers and growing. In addition to this, Gary is continually increasing his influence and fortifying his brand with other platforms. For instance, his popular YouTube Show, The Gary Vee Video Experience, and his hit podcast The Gary Vee Audio Experience.

He’s also recently partnered with Eric Wattenberg & RSE Venture’s Matt Higgins to launch a production studio named VaynerWatt. The company will be focusing on long and short-form content for networks and streaming services.[3]

Gary Vee’s Success Secret

So, what’s the success secret to Gary Vee’s enduring success? Well, it must be said, that Gary Vaynerchuk does have a magical charisma about him, which has undoubtedly played a significant role in his ability to captivate his audience.

However, what has led to much of Gary’s success, and what will continue to help him be successful, is his uncanny ability to spot trends and zero in on what people are interested in. He says it best with this quote:

Equally as important, and what likely helps him be so effective and observing what works and doesn’t work in terms of building businesses and spotting trends is his penchant for relentless effort. Again, he has in the past summed it up for us well in his own words….

Gary has also demonstrated a knack for effectively leveraging technology, the people around him, and media to scale his reach. This knack has given him the ability to grab more and more attention for himself and his clients.

In short, he is great at getting the most out of his resources. It doesn’t matter if it’s his team, the technology he’s using, or his media channels. In his own words…

Related: Gary Vaynerchuk Net Worth

Peer Into The Mind of a Master

He’s not P.T. Barnum, but Gary has indeed mastered the art of leveraging attention to get results. So, to give you a better look into the mind of this master, and a bit more insight on how Gary Vaynerchuk got to where he is today, watch this inspiring video below:

Video Credit: GaryVee (Subscribe to His Channel Here)

Key Takeaways

Gary Vaynerchuk’s success story has a lot to teach us. It shows us how an immigrant from Belarus worked his a** off, made the most of his situation, and leveraged the technology of the day to scale his brand and businesses to staggering heights.

His story also shows us that the American Dream is alive and well for those who choose execution over excuses.

That said, we hope his story also helps you realize that with massive hustle, a healthy dose of obsession with your customer’s wants and needs, and a little leverage, anything is possible.

So, put these takeaways to work for you, and get on with creating your own inspiring story of success.

Till you reach your aims,


PS – If you enjoyed this Gary Vee story, you may also be interested in the stories of fellow success icons like Grant Cardone or Elon Musk.

The STRIVE is on a mission to inspire and uplift 1 billion people by 2032. Our primary aim is to help as many people as possible believe in the uncommon thought, that they can be more than they are, do more than they've done, and achieve more prosperity than they've ever dreamed possible. Let's achieve the impossible together.

Strive Stories




David Goggins Story

David Goggins is a former Navy SEAL and USAF Tactical Air Control Party member who served in Afghanistan and Iraq. He is also a world-renowned ultramarathon runner and triathlete. But what makes David so remarkable isn’t just his accomplishments in the military or the fitness world; it’s his incredible story of overcoming adversity.

“Mental Toughness Is A Lifestyle.”

– david goggins –

In this story, we will take a closer look at David’s life story and showcase how he became one of the fittest men on Earth. By understanding the steps he took to become successful, we can better apply his principles to our own lives and hopefully achieve our own slice of greatness.

With that said, if you’re ready to learn about the mindset of one of the hardest men alive, let’s dive right in to this David Goggins Story.


david goggins story of success

How It Began | David Goggins Story

David Goggin’s early life was challenging. He endured a violent and controlling father, a family divorce, and poverty, all by the age of 8 years old. These early adversities ended up manifesting as health problems such as memory and attention issues as well as a stutter.

Despite having a rough home life in his youth, David had longed for a fresh start after he moved to Indiana with his mother and brother. He longed for a place where he felt safe. Nevertheless, Goggins did not anticipate the pain he would suffer during his first days at school, where he would eventually get bullied because of his unique appearance, and because and he didn’t know how to read.

Goggins didn’t appreciate the bullying, and as a result, he began skipping classes in order to escape the ridicule that was constantly lobbed at him by his classmates.

Needless to say, Goggin’s youth was not filled with sunshine and rainbows. It was a very tough and challenging way to grow up. Fortunately, those hardships didn’t break him, and instead made him stronger in the long run.

Once Goggins completed his schooling, he gave the military a shot. Unfortunately, after a failed attempt to join the Air Force’s as an elite pararescue team member due to sickle cell anemia, he became defeated for a very long time. But, Goggins persisted.

Despite the diagnosis, he refused to give up. “I wanted to feel something besides defeat. I wanted to just go the distance,” David said.

Eventually, he made his way into the Air Force, but as part of a different squad. This time around he made the cut to become part of the United States Air Force Tactical Control Party. But after a servicing for 5 years, he left the Air Force.

From a Nobody to a Somebody

After his 5 year stint in the Air Force, David found himself barely able to make ends meet. He worked as an exterminator, ate tons of junk food, and gained lots of weight. David’s life started to spiral in a downward direction and he began living an uninspired life.

Fortunately, David watched a documentary about the Navy SEALS one day, and found something to be inspired by. The challenge of becoming a seal, and having the mental and physical toughness of the program participants, gave David something to aspire towards.

Serendipitously, that show inspired Goggins to want to do more with his life. It inspired him to strive to become something more, something great. He was tired of being a nobody who just watched the lives of other great people on TV.

So, in was in that sudden moment, that he had found the motivation that would help him go on to lose more than 100 pounds in under three months. He discovered a newfound fire and energy. Thus, he channelled his driven to finally get fit and apply for the program.

He reflects that “It made me reflect on my fears, my insecurities. I saw real men who were overcoming adversity.”

Forward March

In order to get in shape, David joined a gym. Despite his intentions, he was unable to run more than a quarter mile on his first day. As a result of his psychological defeat, Goggins returned home crying and turning to food for emotional support.

Despite the minor regression, this man wasn’t the same as the person who was unmotivated to grow.

So, he got back on his proverbial horse and kept moving forward. He began to cycle and heavily restructured and restricted his diet and successfully brought his weight down to be able to apply for the Navy SEALS within 3 months.

The rest, as they say, is history.

The Turning Point

David Goggins held strong to his commitment and entered Navy SEAL training. Despite tremendous progress and growth in the program, he particularly struggled with the infamous “hell week”, an intense week-long training session where SEAL candidates are forced to move with minimal sleep and food.

David Goggins Success Story

Despite failing this grueling week the first time around due to a case of pneumonia, and the second time due to a stress fracture injury, he responded by completing two successful “hell weeks” in the same year. This shattered his limiting beliefs around his performance abilities and further fueled his progress.

This was the lightbulb moment for Goggins where he realized he needed to acquire a strong mental toughness in order to maintain a strong physical toughness. He dedicated himself to training both the body and the mind from this point forward.

His career in the military lasted for two decades and he received the “Top Enlisted Man” award for his efforts.

Related: David Goggins Quotes

Challenges Along the Way

One of the most challenging moments in Goggin’s life was when a helicopter, containing several of Goggins’ close friends inside, crashed during Operation Red Wings in 2005.

He used this devastating tragedy as fuel to drive him further. He raised money by long-distance running and donated the proceeds to the Special Operations Warrior Foundation, which grants educational scholarship opportunities to students who had lost their parents in the special operations sector. He has raised over 2 million dollars for charity.

David became an ultra-marathoner as a way to add momentum to his tragedies. The Badwater 135 is a grueling 135-mile run beginning in Death Valley, 282 feet below sea level, and ending at an elevation of 8,374 feet. To add to the excitement, it takes place in July, when Death Valley is at its hottest.

His qualification race was a one-day 100-mile run in San Diego, which he completed in 19 hours with little preparation. Upon finishing, he spent an entire year training for the Badwater 135 as hard as he could. Taking fifth place, he completed it in 30 hours.

He would next face challenges with his personal health. When David’s doctor examined him for a routine checkup in 2010, he found a birth defect called an atrial septal defect. Due to a hole between two of the atrial chambers of the athlete’s heart, the organ wasn’t able to operate at its maximum capacity. He was also struggling with progressive muscle weakness and wasting.

In order to save his life, David began to work intensely on rehabilitating himself. With consistent daily stretching, his body began to heal itself and realign. His heart also had time to restore and grow stronger.

Related: The Warrior Mindset

Lessons Learned

According to Goggins, his success is attributed to his “day one, week one” mentality. Every day he lives as though it was the first day of his new job. According to him, even though this mindset rubs people the wrong way, it works and makes him show up completely and with integrity.

He has also learned to never get comfortable with his accomplishments. He has remained hungry for more and believes that if you don’t continually challenge yourself, then you will never be satisfied with life.

David Goggins states that every day is an opportunity for achievement, and he doesn’t feel complete unless he has strived for that. His discipline is internally motivated, and unshakeable by any external standards. He aims to hold his standards higher than others do in order to achieve what others deem is impossible.

“Never Let People Who Choose The Path Of Least Resistance Steer You Away From Your Chosen Path Of Most Resistance.”

– david goggins –

One of the most important things that David Goggins learned over his years of training and competing is the importance of mental toughness. This was a lesson that he learned early on when he first joined the Navy SEALs, but it has stuck with him throughout his life.

Goggins believes that strength of mind is what sets people apart from each other in their ability to accomplish goals and achieve success.

Related: David Goggins Net Worth

Heavy To Hardcore

If you have a few minutes to spare, here’s a short video that provides additional insight on the mindset that helped David Goggin’s go from being over 300 pounds to becoming a hardcore Navy Seal.

Video Credit: CNBC Make It (Subscribe)

Final Thoughts

David Goggins story is an inspiration for all of us who are looking to challenge ourselves mentally and physically, and change our lives in the process. He has now shared his story with many people around the world and has inspired an entire community of individuals to challenge and push themselves to achieve the impossible.

These days, David Goggins also shares his message with people all over the world through his motivational speaking business. His message motivates people to get off their butts and get disciplined. But more importantly, he uses his platform to help people push their limits and become stronger.

david goggins life story quote

With that being said, we hope you learned a few of those strong life lessons from this David Goggins story. Namely, that if you want to achieve our full potential, we have to rid our lives of laziness and stop making excuses for our lot in life.

Till then,


PS – If you enjoyed this David Goggins Story of success and hardcore persistence and overcoming adversity, then you’ll love this inspiring article on the true story of Rudy.

Continue Reading

Strive Stories




Robert Kiyosaki Success Story
Image Credit:

Robert Kiyosaki is a successful modern American businessman who has come to be known for his extremely popular financial education books and programs.

If you have never heard of him, he is the founder of the extremely well known and successful ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ brand, and the author of over 26 different books.

That said, we strive to investigate the inspiring stories of success icons like Robert Kiyosaki, because every success story reveals a blueprint that others can follow. And without a doubt Robert Kiyosaki has an empowering success story that will not only inspire you to persevere in the face of defeat, but also arm you with invaluable insights for finding financial success in this day and age.

So, if you’re ready see what Robert’s story has to teach, let’s dive in:


Taking The Leap

Robert Kiyosaki is a Japanese American who was born in Hawaii.  After serving in the Marine Corps, and then working in sales for Xerox Corporation, Robert tried his hand at entrepreneurship.[1]

He took a leap into entrepreneurship and with his first business he sold those neat looking velcro wallet’s that were all the rage back in the 80’s.  Unfortunately, he didn’t protect his product with patents and eventually his Wallet company went bankrupt when competitors snatched up most of his market share.

But that didn’t stop Robert Kiyosaki.  He got knocked down, but he got back up.  As such, soon after his first business went belly up, he fearlessly opened up another company.  And this time around, he chose to open a company that sold licensed apparel for heavy metal bands. 

Of course good times would not last forever on his second attempt at entrepreneurship, and this company would eventually close shop as well.[2]

Persist Until

Fortunately, Robert kept pressing forward at didn’t let those first two defeats stop him in his tracks.  He did what all great entrepreneurs and businessmen do, he persisted until he succeeded. 

robert kiyosaki success story quote

As such, he continued seeking ways to become financially independent (financial independence is essentially being able to live off of income produced by your personally invested resources, i.e. profits/cashflow from a business, profits from real estate rent, profits from dividends from businesses owned that cover at a minimum your expenses).

Related: Grant Cardone Success Story

A Goal Reached

While working for the Xerox company to pay the bills, and throughout all his attempts at new businesses, he kept striving to build a business and find financial independence.  In so doing, he continued to invest in assets like real estate. 

And slowly, but surely, he invested in enough real estate to reach one of his main goals; financial freedom. He reached his goal of having more cash flowing in every month from his investments than was flowing out to pay living expenses.

It was a goal that did not appear over night. Robert understood that consistency and persistence breeds success, which is why he pressed on till he reached this major goal.

Eventually, Robert would use the milestone success in real estate to find even more success. He would then go on to lever leverage his real estate success until his education company gained traction. 

Then, shortly after seeing success in his new venture, he sold that company and leveraged his new-found wealth to start another education company.  And it was this company where he found his major success breakthrough. It was this success that led him to become the wealth guru the world has come to know him by.[3]

Related: Robert Kiyosaki Net Worth

Financial Education Legacy

Robert Kiyosaki’s success story can help people get inspired and motivated to go for their dreams. However, his true legacy can be found in the financial education he provides in his books and seminars.

Robert has done a tremendous job providing millions of his readers with a way to think differently about money. So, if you’ve yet to read his material, there is no better place to learn the essence behind his financial philosophy than by watching this excellent Robert Kiyosaki video.

Of course, your next best bet would be to study his flagship book on your won. Without a doubt, his book [affiliate link] will help you think differently about money and success forever.

In the mean time however, if you really want to get a better sense of who Robert Kiyosaki is, and the type of advice he gives that has helped him become so successful, watch this video:

Video Credit | The Rich Dad Channel (Subscribe to His Channel Here)

Related: Rich Dad Poor Dad Quotes

Final Words On The Robert Kiyosaki Success Story

This Robert Kiyosaki success story was created to highlight the factors that lead to Robert’s success. As such, your major takeaway should be this; Robert succeeded because he did not quit when first met with defeat. 

In addition to this, he made many mistakes, like we all do. However, he learned from his mistakes, regrouped, and then attacked his goals from another angle. He did this over and over until he succeeded. 

Robert Kiyosaki didn’t know the “how” as it relates to his success, heck hardly any of us do.  But, what he did know was the “where” and the “why” of his efforts.  Robert knew where he wanted to go. But more importantly, he knew the why behind all his efforts.

Then Robert took action accordingly.  He kept moving forward, failure after failure until he arrived at his intended destination. He kept grinding till he found his Success!  

We hope this short Robert Kiyosaki success story will inspire you to find your success.  We hope it will help you find out your “why” and your “where” for all your efforts. Let this Robert Kiyosaki story motivate you to keep moving forward amidst all your obstacles, so sooner or later you’ll be able to reach your aims.

Till then,


PS – If you enjoyed this inspiring Robert Kiyosaki life story, then you’ll love our powerful collection of short stories on success and overcoming failure.

Continue Reading

Strive Stories




Elon Musk Success Story

Elon Musk is the billionaire entrepreneur responsible for co-founding various vanguard companies like Tesla, SolarCity, SpaceX, and PayPal.  He also helped influence the character behind Marvel’s modern take on Tony Stark. And has been compared to uber-successful business visionaries like Steve Jobs and Henry Ford.  And without a doubt, Elon Musk has already accomplished enough to be considered among some of the greats.  So, considering all the impressive accomplishments of this visionary entrepreneur, we will be diving into how such a legend came to be in this Elon Musk Success Story special.

“I Think It Is Possible For Ordinary People To Choose To Be Extraordinary.”

Just like Elon, we too believe that ordinary people can choose to become extraordinary. Which is why we decided to research and publish this success story of Elon Musk.  As such, the aim of this page is to reveal key insights about Elon that will provide you with a better understanding of how he became so successful. And maybe, just maybe you’ll become inspired to do the same.  So, if you’re ready to start learning from Elon’s success story, let’s dive in.


elon musk success story essay

Elon was born in South Africa back in 1971 to a father who was an engineer and a mother who was a nutritionist.  Growing up, Elon spent most of his time reading and tinkering with projects when not in school and when his Nany was not watching him. Which according to an interview he did with Rolling Stone [1], it was not often. 

So, at an early age, Elon became fond of Isaac Asimov’s books, which would eventually inspire his futurism. And it was his interest in the future, and his penchant for engineering that his engineer father helped cultivate, along with his eye for design, that would set him up for some grand future achievements.

After attending University for just five months in South Africa, Elon decided to move to Canada to attend Queen’s University.  But he didn’t finish his schooling there. In fact, after just two years, he transferred to the University of Pennsylvania to finish his schooling.   But getting through college wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows.  Elon had to strive to make his way through.

Elon financed his college education through a combination of scholarships, getting loans, and having to work two different jobs at the same time.  Fortunately, his sacrifice would eventually pay off, earning himself a degree in Economics and another in Physics. 

After these two educational accomplishments, Elon then went on to get into Stanford’s Ph.D. program. But, just after two days into the program he dropped out to pursue his entrepreneurial dreams.

Related: Elon Musk’s Net Worth


Elon’s initial start-up was an internet company that he, his brother, and a friend went all in on.  The company took some time to get off the ground, and in the interim, Elon would struggle financially.  Things got so bad for Elon at one point, that the only bed he could afford was the couch in their start-up’s office, and the shower and restroom facilities at his local YMCA. 

Despite the low times of this endeavor however, they would eventually find angel investors who backed the company, and clients within the city, and various big name news publishing companies like the New York Times and the Chicago Tribune who saw promise in the company and its useful city guide mapping software. 

Elon Musk Success Story Quote on Purpose

From this point, it was only a matter of time before Elon and company, were able to sell the start-up to Compaq for $307 million.[2]

The Next Venture

After selling the company, Elon earned a $22 million dollar windfall, and would go on to invest the bulk of that money into his next venture, which was a financial services company he co-founded called  His luck would improve shortly after starting this new venture as they merged with the company that serviced  And just three years after starting up, merging it with, they would sell it off to eBay for $1.5 billion.

The Big Gamble

With the acquisition of, Elon’s net worth would grow to be $123 million.  Now, at this point Elon could’ve retired early and rode off into to the sunset and lived happily ever after.  But that’s not how legends are made.  Instead, Elon would take a huge gamble and invest most if he newfound millions into two separate companies.  One of them was Tesla Motors, a fledgling automaker focused on electric transportation, and the other was SpaceX, a companied hellbent on commercial space exploration. 

Where most people would leave, Elon leaned in.  He poured his money, blood, sweat, and tears into making both companies a success.  And his passion for design, engineering, and the future would have him succeed on both fronts.

Tesla, is now one of the most valuable companies in the world valued at nearly half a trillion dollars ($554 billion)[3], and SpaceX has made progress as well with a recent valuation near $175 billion.

Elon’s big gamble seems to be paying off.

Elon’s Enduring Success

Elon Musk’s success continues to grow as he endlessly pushes the envelope with Tesla, SpaceX, his acquisition of Twitter (now known as X), and the handful of other vanguard companies he has invested in and co-founded along the way.  

So, what’s the success secret to Elon’s enduring success?  Well, it must be said, that Elon does has above average intelligence, which has played a large role in his achievements. However, despite his intelligence, Elon excels because of an extreme ambition that is driven by his passion, and ambition that is backed up by an insane work ethic.

Related: Work Ethic and Success

Success Ethos

In addition to this, Elon focuses most of his energy on activities and ventures that actually matter.  He has made it known through commencement speeches and interviews that he does not waste time on things that don’t matter.  He says it best with this quote…

Equally as important, is that Elon does not do things for the money.  In fact, he has blatantly stated that money doesn’t matter to him.  All he cares about is accomplishing his main objectives and missions in life.   So, what helps Elon succeed is his commitment to execution and the superhuman work ethic employs to make things happen.  He sums up his work ethic very will with the following quote…

Lastly, the key aspect that has helped Elon find so much success has been his willingness to take risks.  In fact, his whole career has been a series of taking one big risk after another.  Indeed, his fearless approach to turning his ideas into reality, and the fearless action he took to execute on those ideas is key in much of Elon’s success.  He encapsulates this fearless attitude best when he said…

Peer Into The Mind of a Visionary

To get a better look into the way of thinking that has driven Elon’s futurist pursuits, consider studying his quotes. This list of Elon Musk quotes is a great place to start.

In addition, you can also watch some of the amazing videos others have created about him, like the one below:

Video Credit: Chispa Motivation (Be Sure to Subscribe to Their Channel)

Key Takeaways

Elon Musk’s achievements and life journey in general has a lot to teach us. There’s no doubt that he is a maverick who is willing to do what most won’t, which is part and parcel of his extraordinary achievements.

That said, we hope our Elon Musk success story has convinced you that becoming a billionaire entrepreneur is possible. Elon’s inspiring story should help you realize that you can also get on track for massive success.

But more importantly, it should help you realize that your success can especially be found if you back up your ambitious purpose, with drive, passion, an iron-clad work ethic, and a fearless zeal for executing on those ideas.

So, follow these key takeaways and watch how the sky truly becomes the limit for you, like it has for Elon Musk.

Till you reach your aims,


PS – If you enjoyed our Elon Musk Success Story, then you may also enjoy our account of the late, but equally inspiring visionary Steve Jobs, or fellow billionaire Bernard Arnault.

Continue Reading

Strive Stories




Best Success Stories

There’s nothing like reading a few good success stories to lift our spirits.  There’s something uniquely powerful about knowing someone else has experienced setbacks and serious hardships similar to our own, and yet still managed to come out on top. 

Success stories are invigorating, and a great one can provide us with a renewed hope, that despite things feeling unimaginably hard and seemingly hopeless, we can still achieve our dreams.  So, here are some of the best real life inspirational stories of success we’ve ever studied.

Use them to reenergize and inspire yourself to believe that you too can achieve success and your dreams, if you’ll but press on like they did.  Enjoy!


inspirational success stories

1. Sylvester Stallone

Sylvester Stallone has one of the most inspiring success stories. Before he made it big he was essentially a starving artist. For many years during and after his college years, he worked odd jobs to pay the bills. And he would do so while simultaneously taking on any acting roles he could find to keep his dreams of becoming a successful actor alive.

It was a struggle that Stallone would endure for many years, seven in fact. Throughout all of those seven challenging years, he would gain a few small roles in a handful of movies. But, none of them were grand enough to get his career launched.

During those seven long years of striving, he came face-to-face with near poverty. Stallone was so desperate for money at one point, he had to sell his wife’s jewelry. He even had to sell his dog because he couldn’t keep him fed. Things got so bad for Stallone that he even had to endure homelessness for a short period of time.

But, his days of struggle as an aspiring actor would not last forever. After facing seemingly insurmountable odds for over seven years, he would finally get his big break. And this break would come after he managed to get a script he wrote in a three day flurry of inspiration, in front of two big-shot directors in Hollywood.

It was this defining moment that would turn the tide for Sylvester Stallone. His career would skyrocket after he negotiated the lead role in the film that would come to be known as ‘Rocky’.

Success eventually comes to those who always dream of her. For a more complete account of Sylvester Stallone’s inspiring success story, you can find it here.

sylvester stallone success stories quote

2. Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey’s success story is very unique. From a very early age she experienced a level of adversity and poverty that most people would struggle to overcome. She was born into poverty and a broken home in rural Mississippi. Her parents who were just 18 and 19 when they had her, split soon after she was born. This lead to her being taking in by her grand mother.

And her grandmother was not your typical warm and fuzzy grandmother. No, she was a hard-nosed grandmother who was an extreme disciplinarian who discipline her for even the slightest offenses. But, the poverty and disciplined lifestyle didn’t last forever as she moved back with mother at the age of six.

Oprah would then experience sexual assault at an early age, having been molested as early as 9 by some of her family members. Having been emotionally abandoned, abused, and molested, she eventually started part-taking in extremely risky behaviors. Behaviors which eventually led to her becoming pregnant at the age of 14.

Then, because she got pregnant her mother kicked her out of the house. Oprah would go on to live with her father, only to then lose the baby a week after he was born.

Needless to say, Oprah’s early life was chockfull of struggle, adversity, and tragedy. But, regardless of all of her unfortunate experiences, she decided to turn her life around after she lost her baby. So, she committed herself to getting an education, becoming her best, and to going after her dreams.

She decided to start trusting herself again, and loving herself, and making choices that would improve her life versus destroy it. One day, she garnered enough confidence to participate in a beauty pageant. And it was her participation in this pageant that would eventually lead her into a job working for a radio station doing the news.

Oprah’s love for speaking to an audience set the stage for continued success as she would go on to become a news anchor, which she would eventually leverage to host a TV chat show in Maryland, which ultimately led to her having her morning talk show in Chicago.

And as they say, the rest was history. Oprah overcame massive challenges in her youth. Challenges that side line all too many people. She chose to turn her wounds into wisdom, and went on to become one of the most successful talk show hosts in history (by helping many others do the same) with her own self-named talk show, The Oprah Winfrey show. Oprah is now one of the richest self-made women in America.

success stories - oprah winfrey

3. Arnold Schwarzenegger

Considering Arnold Schwarzenegger is the epitome of the self-made man, we wouldn’t dare exclude him from our success stories collection. Arnold was born and raised in Austria. He grew up at a time where the country was still healing from it’s defeat in World War II.

Alcoholism was rampant, defeatism was the norm, and big dreaming scoffed at in his environment. The odds were certainly stacked against young Arnold.

But Arnold didn’t care. He knew he didn’t want to live the traditional Austrian life his parents wanted for him. He also knew he wanted to move to America because it was the land of the free.

As such, he hatched a plan to become a success in body-building. Then to leverage that success to get into movies. And sure enough he did just that. He went on to fulfill his vision by becoming the youngest man to ever win a Mr. Universe competition, and then on to win five Mr. Universe titles and seven Mr. Olympia titles.

After reaching what he set out to do in the sport of bodybuilding, he then went on to commit himself to the acting career he had always dreamed of. And sure enough, he would go on to conquer the film industry to the same degree that he conquered the body building world. Going on to star in multiple blockbuster movies that would gross over $3 billion, and earn him one of the most sizeable net worth’s in Hollywood.

You can find a more complete account of Arnold’s inspiring journey here: Arnold Schwarzenegger Success Story.

Success Stories Arnold Quote

4. JK Rowling

J.K Rowling had a dream of becoming a writer early on. But, she would have to persist for many years before her dream of becoming a published author would materialize. Almost as soon as she decided to get to work on putting her ideas down on paper for her book, she would be sidetracked by her mother’s death.

The depression that would ensue left Rowling seeking out a job as a teacher in another country. Soon after, she married and had a child, which would delay her aspirations even further.

But things weren’t done going off the rails for Rowling, as her marriage would abruptly end just one year after it began. This lead to her being jobless with a child, and a barely surviving off of unemployment benefits.

However, despite her challenges, Rowling would persist in the creation of her book. And she did so by seizing every spare moment she could while her child slept to write. Until finally the day came when she completed her manuscript.

Of course, even after Rowling finished her manuscript obstacles still remained. 12 different publishers rejected her novel. The rejection took a toll on her spirits, and she almost quit. Fortunately, she tried one more time. And it was at that moment, that J.K. Rowling’s luck turned around. She finally found a publisher would accepted her manuscript.

Now, J.K. Rowling is now one of the best selling authors of all time. She is also the highest paid novelist in the world. Her books have been translated into over 80 different languages with over 600 million sold. Clearly, persistence and patience pays off in the long run.

success stories - jk rowling quote

5. Steven Spielberg

Most people don’t know this, but Steven Spielberg was rejected from film school three times. But he didn’t let those rejections stop him, and he kept applying till he got accepted.  Eventually Cal State, Long Beach would accept him into their film program. 

Fortunately for Spielberg, he would then go on to leverage his opportunity at Cal State to land an unpaid internship at Universal Studios. 

Of course, this internship wouldn’t last forever, but it lasted just long enough for him to learn how sneak in to the studios undetected so he could continually gather intel on what it would take to become successful in the business. 

Finally, the day would come that he managed to get a film he created in the hands of film executives. But, he had to first overcome the film executives multiple attempts to make him give up.

After being told that the film size was not the right size multiple times, and remaking the entire demo to the recommended sizes every time, the executives finally relented and gave him his film a shot. The movie would go on to win major awards, and solidified Steven Spielberg’s place within the industry.

Steven Spielberg is now one of the most influential film makers in history. On top of this, he’s now also one of the wealthiest. And out of all of our inspirational stories of success, his story in particular, shows, that if you knock long enough and hard enough, the doors of opportunity will eventually swing open for you.

Related: 5 Steps to Start Living Your Dreams

Success Stories - spielberg

6. Mary Kay Ash

Mary Kay Ash has a truly inspiring success story. She was born in a small town in Texas and got married and started a family at the young age of 17. She would go on to have three children with her husband who was in the military, but they eventually got a divorce.

Mary Kay would struggle for years to take care of her children on her own. But she took on various sales jobs in the direct selling industry, and strived to climb the corporate ranks.

However, after many years of selling various products, along with a few middle management and trainer roles, she started to feel like she was being overlooked for the more prominent leadership roles she aspired to because she was a woman. As such, she eventually decided to take matters into her own hands.

Once her kids were out of the house and on their own, at the age of 45 Mary Kay Ash decided to become her own boss. So, she started her own cosmetic company. She started off very small, but in just a few short years, she manage to transform Mary Kay Cosmetics into a multi-billion dollar corporation that still serves and empowers people all over the world to this day.

Despite being past what most people consider their prime, Mary Kay went on to author multiple best-selling books like The Mary Kay WayMiracles HappenYou Can Have It All, as well as a few others, and she became an inspiration to countless women. And due to the success of her business and her aim to inspire as many people as possible, she became a multi-millionaire and eventually named as ‘The Greatest Woman In American History’.

inspirational success stories - mary kay ash

7. Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo grew up in a household that was barely getting by. As a child, he had to share a room with three of his siblings due to their meager financial situation. There were even times where they didn’t have enough money to buy a soccer ball just so he could play in the streets. But Ronaldo did not let his environment dictate his destiny.

No, instead he would find ways to play the sport he loved even without the ball. He would use bottles, rags, or pretty much anything he could find to make a makeshift ball just so he could play. 

Eventually, Cristiano would get so good at soccer, that he would have to make the ultimate sacrifice at the age of 11 to move over 500 miles away from his family to train with a prestigious soccer academy. It’s a good thing he did too, because by doing so, he put himself on track to eventually become on of the best players in history.

Cristiano Ronaldo is now known as the greatest Portuguese player of all time by the Portuguese Football federation.  Millions of soccer fans all across the globe believe him to be the greatest of all time. 

In addition to this, he is the first soccer player ever to earn over $1 billion dollars, while generating one of the largest net worth’s among professional athletes.  

If you’re looking to learn more about Cristiano’s inspiring success story, you’ll love this.

success story quote

8. Lionel Messi

While on the topic of soccer, we must also mention Lionel Messi’s success story because it’s every bit as inspiring.  Here’s why, at age of 11, Messi was cut from his soccer team because they thought he was too small.  And he was small, but it was because he had a growth hormone deficiency which made him a lot smaller than all the other kids his age.

Fortunately, Messi didn’t let this deter him.  Instead, he would place himself on a strict regimen where he would inject growth hormones into himself.  And he would go on to do inject himself with this hormone for seven days in one leg, and then seven days in the other.

Messi would keep this routine up for six years.

The great news is, Messi’s sacrifice and persistence paid off.  Because now, he is one of the highest paid soccer players with a staggering net worth, and is considered by legions of fans to be one of the best soccer players of all time due to his winning soccer’s highest achievement, ‘The Ballon d’Or’ six times.

Success requires sacrifice.

success story quote - messi

9. Michael Jordan

Since we mentioned the greatest of all time in soccer, we can’t leave out the man many consider to be the greatest of all time in basket ball. Now, most people aren’t’ aware of this, but when Michael Jordan was merely a sophomore in high school, he already had big dreams of being a great basketball player. 

So he did something brash and tried out for the Varsity team. But, his coaches cut him from the team. They didn’t see his value nor did they think he was ready.

This rejection hit Jordan especially hard because of his oversized dreams and expectations. In fact, the rejection hit him so hard he went home afterwards and cried in his closet.

Even though that rejection still bothered Jordan, he dusted himself off and went all in for the JV team.  He trained like no other in the off season and grew four extra inches. And the following year he tried out for the varsity team again. But this second time around, he made it.

Not only did he make it, but he went on to become the team’s MVP, making the All-American Team, and eventually earned himself a college scholarship. And from there, well, you know the rest of the story.

Michael Jordan became the man who would score 32,292 points in a basketball career. Jordan became the man who acquired 6 NBA championships. The man who also collected 5 MVP titles, and is now considered the greatest basketball player of all time.

For all the success stories we’ve covered, this one clearly shows the importance of having great expectations, and resilience after rejection.

success stories quote by michael jordan

10. Paulo Coelho

Over 30 years ago a book titled ‘The Alchemist’ was published and hardly anyone noticed. The author of this book was a man named Paulo Coelho, and he was told by the first bookseller to carry his book, that only one person bought a copy after it was released.  As bad as it was to hear about the grim results Coelho remained confident in his work. 

Paulo Coelho waited for better results to appear. Unfortunately, six months passed before he sold his next copy.  Oddly, the person who bought his first book was the same person who bought the second.

After that first year the publisher decided the book was a flop and ended Coelho’s contract.  Fortunately, though, Coelho shrugged off that initial defeat.  He made up his mind to not give in. So Coelho doubled down to pursue his vision with even more fervor by finding another publisher. 

“Now, Coelho found a new publisher, but it was no easy task, as he encountered rejection after rejection.  But, after many repeated rejections, he finally landed that new publisher, and with it, another opportunity to capture his dream.

From that point forward Coelho’s dreams started to come true.  At first, he only sold three thousand books.  But the sales kept trickling in. And as time went by, he would sell ten thousand, and then 100 thousand, and so on and so forth. 

Coelho’s luck has yet to run out. His books sales continue to grow year over year, with now over 150 million and counting copies of ‘The Alchemist’ having been sold. Even more staggering is the fact that he sold over 320 million books when including all of his other works. But, it all started with that first book!

Paulo Coelho’s success story shows that if you truly want something bad enough, all the universe really will conspire to help you achieve the impossible.

11. Abraham Lincoln

Most of us know of this great man because of what he did for those who were in bondage in the United States of America. He delivered the Emancipation Proclamation; a massive accomplishment which ultimately led to the abolition of slavery.

But, what most don’t realize about Abraham Lincoln, is that he has one of the most impressive rap sheets when it comes to overcoming defeat.

In short, his success story consists of a list of failures and set backs so sizable, that you would hardly think it belonged to one of the most accomplished and respected presidents of the United States of America.

Here’s a great example of the many failures Lincoln endured, with a few victories he managed to sprinkle in over his lifetime:

1832: Lost his job

1832: Defeated for legislature

1833: Failed in business

1834: Elected to legislature

1835: The woman he loved died

1836: Had a nervous breakdown

1838: Defeated for Speaker

1843: Defeated for nomination for Congress

1848: Lost re-nomination

1849: Reject for Land Officer

1854: Defeated for Senate

1856: Defeated for nomination for Vice-President

1858: Again defeated for Senate

1860: Elected for President of The United States of America

To be sure, Lincoln virtually failed his way to success. His recorded failures helps us realize the truth behind the Michael Jordan quote we mentioned earlier, and that is…that the key to success is through failure.

Out of all of these success stories, this one in particular should convince you that just because you’ve yet to succeed in life, it doesn’t mean you never will. So, keep pushing and preparing for your big day, because it will come, so long as you keep eye on the prize and keep moving forward.

Real Life Inspirational Stories of Success - Abe Lincoln

Related: Success Quotes for Overcoming Failure

12. Tom Brady

One of our favorite inspirational stories of success comes from Tom Brady. Brady didn’t follow the typical athletic path into the NFL. While most athletes begin getting groomed for the sport by the 3rd grade, Tom Brady wouldn’t set foot onto the grid iron until the 9th grade.

In fact, his debut into actually getting onto the football field didn’t come until his Sophomore year. His moment came when the starting quarterback for the JV team quit. Fortunately for Brady, that opportunity helped him capture the starting Varsity QB role by the time his Junior year arrived.

After finding success at the high school level, Brady would eventually go on to become a Michigan Wolverine. But success wasn’t a given for Brady at this level. Nope, he had to earn it.

In fact, Brady came into the program as an underdog, with seven quarterbacks ahead of him on the depth chart. After almost requesting a transfer to another school, Brady’s determination eventually won him the coveted starting position by the time he was a Junior.

The obstacles Brady would face continued on even into the Pros. Brady had his mind set to play in the pros, unfortunately there was little interest in him during the draft. In fact, he was selected in the 6th round as the 199th pick, just barely making it into the league.

Pretty much every coach in the league grossly underrated and underestimated Brady. His draft report from 2000 NFL draft actually stated the following qualities:

  • Poor Build | Skinny
  • Lacks Great Physical Stature and Strength
  • Lacks Mobility and Ability to Avoid The Rush
  • Lacks a Really Strong Arm
  • Can’t Drive The Ball Down Field
  • Doesn’t Throw a Really Tight Spiral
  • System-Type Player Who Can Get Exposed if Forced to Adlib
  • Easily Knocked Down

Remember, Tom brady was not the highest rated quarterback, he wasn’t the most well groomed for the sport, nor was he the best athlete. In addition, he didn’t have the best numbers, or even the best mechanics. However, Tom Brady did have the most heart and determination.

Thus, through sheer willpower, he pushed himself to becoming one of the greatest football players of all times. And he has proved his case with the following accolades:

  • Most NFL Championships By a Player (7x)
  • Most Games Won By a Quarterback
  • Most Games Played By a Quarterback
  • Most Combined Passing Yards
  • Most Touchdown Passes
  • Most 4th Quarter Comebacks
  • Best Touchdown to Interception Ratio
  • 5 Time Super Bowl MVP
  • 3 Time MVP of the NFL
  • 2 Time NFL All-Decade Team Player
  • Only Player to Win a Super Bowl for Both The AFC & NFC

13. Sarah Blakely

This success story is about Sarah Blakely, who was once crowned one of the youngest self-made billionaires by Forbes. Her story begins with her love of the firm look that panty hose offered, but her hating how they looked when she wore open toe shoes.

Blakely’s annoyance with panty hose would lead to her always cutting the feet off of her panty hose to pull of the look she was going for. But, after noticing that many other women were doing the same thing, she had a lightbulb moment. And she started to contemplate the creation of a product that would solve this problem.

One day after watching an inspiring Oprah show, Sarah decided to take massive action on her idea. So, she risked it all by investing her entire $5,000 life savings to move to Atlanta, GA. Once there, she would kickstart the production of her product idea for the masses.

Blakely experienced tons of resistance at first. Nobody wanted to manufacture the product she was trying to create. They thought it was too risky and a potential waste of time. Her patent officer even found it difficult to take her idea seriously, thinking it to be a dud.

But, after two years of planning, countless late nights, and lots of no’s, she finally found success. Her lucky break came when a factory agreed to manufacture her products. And when Neiman Marcus and Bloomingdales took a risk on her by listing her products for sale at their stores.

Her first year in business she sold over $4 million in revenue. And every year there after her sales would grow exponentially. Sarah’s courage to go all in, and her persistence to bring her idea to the world helped her become a billionaire by the age of 41.

14. Grant Cardone

This next story helps drive the point home, that it’s never too late to be what you might have been. It’s also a good reminder that no matter where you come from, or where you’ve been, you can change. It’s a testament that anyone can clean up their act, and can find massive success in the process.

This success story is about a man who grew up poor in Louisiana, lost his father at a young age, and was raised a single-parent household with four other siblings. It’s a story about a man named Grant Cardone.

Cardone is not your typical celebrity. He didn’t come from money. He’s not a Hollywood superstar,. Nor does he possess some amazing talent, like script-writing, politics, or athleticism. However, what he does possess, is something that is available to us all, and that is a determination to succeed.

Grant Cardone found himself in bad company in his youth. He was involved and addicted to drugs, and was stuck in a downward spiral for over a decade. After getting robbed at gunpoint, being beaten to a bloody pulp with a gun, and then being kicked out of his mother’s house, he finally decided to change his life.

At the age of 25 Grant Cardone decided to clean up his act. He cut all negative influences from his life, got sober, and took the first job he could land.

That job was as a car salesmen. It was a title and a position that Grant was not very fond of.

The economy was slow which meant he didn’t have many options, so he made it work.

Cardone committed to becoming the best salesperson he could be. So, he invested heavily in his own self-improvement by reading books and studying his craft and his industry.

After committing to becoming his very best, his income quickly doubled. And soon thereafter, he would become one of the best car salesmen in the country. He eventually moved on to running his own business, and was extremely smart and disciplined with his money.

Cardone only spent money on what was absolutely necessary for food our housing. He would place anything left over into an investment fund just for real estate.

Grant Cardone’s focus on learning more so that he could earn more, along with having the discipline to invest his extra money, instead of wasting it on frivolous things, helped him become a self-made millionaire just five years later by the age of 30.

Cardone has since gone on to become a prominent international businessman, speaker, and the owner of Cardone Capital, a $1.5 billion investment firm.  He’s authored the New York Times bestselling books If You’re Not First, You’re Last, and other notable books like The 10X Rule, and Axiom Award winning Sell or Be Sold.  In addition to this, he also founded Cardone University, a popular sales training platform that has accrued over 50,000,000 and growing users.

It took Grant Cardone only five years to completely revolutionize his entire life. With the right mindset and a good dose of willpower, just imagine what 5 years could do for you.

inspirational success stories - grant cardone

15. Kevin Hart

Every body knows of and loves Kevin Hart. He’s been making us laugh and keeping us highly entertained for many years now. But, what most people don’t know about Kevin Hart, is that he had to overcome some major obstacles before he became one of the most beloved comedians in the world.

Hart had to overcome a negative homelife with a father who was reckless, toxic, and always causing trouble. He had to overcome the challenges of a 2 hour commute for years.

Hart endured naysayers often. In fact, someone he highly respected in the industry told him that he should quit comedy. He had to outlast the boos, the heckling, and getting chicken wings thrown at him due to his performances.

Kevin Hart had to turn countless setbacks into comebacks. He had to choose time after time, to not quit. He chose to keep pushing for his dreams, to ignore the critics, the naysayers, and anyone who doubted his dreams.

Eventually though, Hart’s persistence and commitment to his vision would pay off. The tide would turn for Kevin Hart after years of career stagnancy, rejection, and close calls with defeat.

Kevin Hart is now one of the world’s top 10 comedians. He’s also one of the richest too. So, if you think you can’t do something, just think about Kevin Hart’s success story and all he went through. Because if he can do it, so can you.

16. Tony Robbins

Tony Robbins’ upbringing was rough. His parents divorced when he was only 7 and his mother would go on to get remarried 4 different times as he grew up.

His mother’s unstable relationships with men created a chaotic environment for Tony and his siblings. As the oldest of three other siblings, Robbins felt obligated to step up and help his family cope in a household led by a substance abusing mother.

Robbins had to grow up fast.  As a teenager he had to do the grocery shopping every week for the family because his mother couldn’t be bothered to do it. He also had to prepare the meals for everyone because no one else would.

Eventually, Robbins had to take on various jobs in his youth just to keep the bills paid. Amazingly, Robbins would do all these things even without a car, relying solely on public transportation to get around.

At the age of 17, Robbins had a falling-out with his mother, and she kicked him out of the house.  He finished high school but avoided college.

Armed only with a high school diploma he struggled for a few years working menial jobs that sucked the life out of him.  He gained weight, felt broke, and started feeling hopeless about his situation.

One day, after attending a Jim Rohn he became inspired to turn it all around.  He embraced Rohn’s message of hope and the power of taking responsibility for one’s situation.  And he used that inspiration to reach out to Jim Rohn himself for work, and Rohn obliged.

Robbins soon became one of the Rohn’s best salesman.  In fact, Robbins was so good that he became a millionaire by the age of 26 just from sales. 

Leveraging everything he learned from Rohn, Robbins eventually broke out on his own and became the best-selling author, high performance coach, and multimillionaire that the world has come to know and love.

Tony Robbins story goes to show that our past doesn’t equal our future. And you can overcome slow starts and challenging situations to create a rich and wonderful life.

17. John Paul DeJoria

John Paul DeJoria experienced plenty of hardship before achieving true success. For starters, he grew up in relative poverty. After his parents divorced, his mother couldn’t support him and his brother, so was given up to a foster home.

When his mother finally made enough money to get him and his brother out of the foster home, he still eventually had to find work early on to help his struggling mother pay the bills.

Unfortunately, the financial challenges didn’t cease for John Paul DeJoria after striking out on his own.

After graduating from high school, DeJoria spent two years in the Navy and then started a family. He eked by for a long time by taking various odd jobs as a janitor, gas station attendant, insurance salesmen, and even a door-to-door encyclopedia salesman.

He struggled for a long time to create a prosperous and stable life for himself and his family.
Unfortunately, his wife grew impatient and abandoned him and his two-year-old son. Shortly after, he eventually became homeless for a brief period of time. Thankfully, DeJoria never gave up hope.

He hustled for years to get his life in order and provide for his son. Eventually, he found his lucky break after getting his haircut by a hairdresser named Paul Mitchell.

After learning about a high-quality product that his hairdresser sold, he saw the opportunity to go into business with him to help sell his product across the city. So, he went into business with Paul Mitchell and the product became a big hit locally, and then eventually across the entire beauty industry.

John Paul DeJoria leveraged the grit, salesmanship, and business acumen he acquired from all his unprosperous years to transform his budding business partnership into a multinational enterprise. Now, he’s a multi-billionaire.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully these success stories help you realize that while success may be elusive, it is not unattainable. We also hope that these handpicked stories have helped you understand that success is both a journey and a destination.

But most importantly, we hope you walk away knowing that in order to achieve success, you’ll have to first go through your share of struggles, rejections, and even disasters, but are now eager to take on the challenge.

So, keep your feet on the ground and your eyes on the prize. Keep moving towards your dreams no matter what. Do this, and your success will be just around the corner.

Till you reach your aims,


PS – Every success story is unique and can inspire in a different way. That said, if you’re looking for even more success stories about how others achieved success and riches, then you’ll love these Strive Stories too.

Continue Reading

Strive Stories




Kanye West Success Story

Kanye West (now officially known as Ye) is a highly successful artist, producer, cultural icon and entrepreneur. He has released several critically acclaimed albums and started his own fashion line. He has received numerous awards and honors, including ten Grammy Awards. And to top it all off, he’s a multi-millionaire who has become one of the most influential artists and entrepreneurs in the world.

Kanye’s success is due in part to his hard work and dedication. He is always working on new music or projects, and he puts a lot of thought into everything he does. He also has a great team behind him, which has helped him achieve his goals.

“Shoot For The Stars, So If You Fall You Land On A Cloud.”

– kanye west –

With that said, if you want to learn more about Kanye West’s success story and how we can use his journey to success to inspire greater levels of creativity and ambition in our own lives, then read on:

The Early Years

Kanye Omari West was born on June 8th, 1977. His parents divorced when he was only 3 years old and he and his mother relocated to Chicago, Illinois from Atlanta, Georgia.

West had a love for the creative arts at an early age and began writing poetry and drawing when he was just 5 years old. He began rapping in 3rd grade and started to write and compose his own music by the time he was in middle school.

He eventually met his mentor, the DJ, and producer No I.D. at a local radio station when he was about 14 years old. No I.D. took Kanye under his wing and taught him how to produce beats and experiment with hip hop productions. West became friends with another up-and-coming rapper, Jay Z, and the two would often freestyle together.

Ultimately, Kanye started creating beats for other artists in the Chicago area and formed a rap group known as the Go-Getters.[1] The group released their first and only album in 1999.

The Struggle

Although Kanye West was successfully working as a producer, he wanted to step into the limelight and be a rapper himself. He tried to convince Jay Z to sign him to his record label, Roc-A-Fella Records, but Jay Z was reluctant to add him to the roster. He eventually relented and signed Kanye in 2002.

On October 23rd, 2003. Kanye experienced a grave car accident that left him with a shattered jaw. He required surgery to reconstruct his face and was bedridden for weeks.

Kanye left the L.A. studio at around 3 am in a rented Lexus, after finishing a late-night session with Peedi Crack, Beanie Sigel, and The Black Eyed Peas. Just blocks away from the W Hotel, he was cut off and collided head-on with another car.

As a result of the accident, his face needed reconstructive surgery. It took Kanye weeks to recover from the accident. Because he did not have health insurance, he had to foot the bill himself.

West used this time to reflect on his life and career. He decided that he needed to focus on his own music and not just produce beats for other artists. He realized that the music he had previously made wouldn’t have a major impact on the world if he were to die in that tragic accident. From this moment forward, Kanye dedicated himself to making the best music of his career.

He would never play small and he proved this by writing and recording several of his most popular hits while still recovering from the accident.

The Rise To Fame

Many of the demos that Kanye made with No I.D. alongside his producing experience, became the basis of his own solo career. He started working on his own music and released his debut album The College Dropout in 2004.

Kanye West Success Story Quote

The album was a huge success, both commercially and critically. It received positive reviews from music critics and debuted at number two on the Billboard 200 chart. It went on to sell over four million copies in the United States. In addition to this, it was also certified 4-times platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

Kanye’s second album, Late Registration, was released in 2005 and was also a huge success. It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart and received positive reviews from music critics. The album has since been certified triple platinum by the RIAA.

In 2007, Kanye released his third album, Graduation. The album was again a huge success and debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart. It has since been certified double platinum by the RIAA.

Kanye’s fourth studio album, 808s & Heartbreak, was released in 2008. The album was a departure from his previous work and featured more electronic and autotuned vocals. Although it was not as commercially successful as his previous albums, it still received positive reviews from music critics.

Kanye’s fifth studio album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, was released in 2010 to critical acclaim. It too debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart and became one of the highest-rated albums of all time by music critics.

His sixth studio album, Yeezus, was released in 2013 and received positive reviews from music critics. It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart and sold over two million copies in the United States.

The seventh studio album, The Life of Pablo, was released in 2016. It also debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart and has since been certified platinum by the RIAA.

The Kanye West’s Entrepreneurial Path

Following the release of his debut album, Kanye West began designing and manufacturing his own line of clothing and sneakers. Introducing Shutter Shades in 2008, a sleek new sneaker that incorporates traditional shutter-style sunglasses.

He then produced the “Air Yeezy” line in 2009, a highly successful shoe that lasted until 2013. The Adidas Yeezy Boosts were officially released on December 3, 2013, after months of anticipation and rumors.  

West has also released several fashion lines, including DW by Kanye West, Pastelle Clothing, and A.P.C. Kanye West. He has also been involved in the creative direction of numerous fashion brands, such as Louis Vuitton, Gucci, and Nike.

He also founded a production company and record label, “GOOD Music”, in 2004. The label has since signed artists such as John Legend, Big Sean, Pusha T, Kid Cudi, and Mos Def.

Kanye West and his mother started the “Kanye West Foundation” (now called the Dr. Donda West Foundation) in 2003. It aims to provide access to arts and music education for children in low-income communities. [2]

He also founded “Got Bars” in 2013, a free music writing program that helps young people in high-risk areas of Chicago learn how to write and record their own music.

 “I feel that I’m very blessed. But with great blessings come great responsibility.” – Kanye West

Related: Kanye West Quotes

Kanye’s Fall and Slow Redemption

Kanye’s reputation and riches took a big hit in 2022. After pushing the limits on controversial subjects, he lost a contract with one of his biggest business partners, Adidas.[3]

On top of that, his multi-billion dollar net worth was reduced dramatically, as many platforms and business partners severed ties with the controversial artist.

In Early 2023, Kanye attempted to mend his errors, by apologizing for his comments. That said, he’s reputation and riches has not fully bounced back to the heights of his success.

However, Kanye has slowly been working to redeem his reputation since his public fall from grace . He’s since created new partnerships with various artists, including Ty Dolla Sign and their work on the album ‘Vultures’.

Certainly Kanye’s status still has a ways to go, but he appears to be moving in the right direction. Of course, only time will tell.

Related: Ye’s Net Worth

The Kanye West Method

Having said all of that, it’s apparent that Kanye West is an achievement machine. As we’ve just outlined, he’s been tallying up his wins and accomplishments (along with a few L’s) year-over-year for more than a decade now. But how does he do it?

Well, this video production by El Taco Supreme provides a nice analysis on the creative genius of Kanye that has helped him achieve so much so fast. Give it a look if you want to learn what Kanye’s true secret to success is….

Video Credit: El Taco Supreme (Subscribe Here)

Lessons Learned

The Kanye West Success Story is one of dedication, hard work, and perseverance. Despite all the obstacles he has faced in his life, he has always pushed forward and continued to achieve success in most of the projects he pursued. He is a true inspiration to all who aspire to follow their dreams.

Some lessons we can take away from Kanye West’s success story are the importance of following your dreams, leveraging your talents, and perseverance. And that no matter what obstacles you face in life, if you take the risk to pursue your talents, and keep pushing forward and working hard, you can achieve success. No doubt, Kanye West is a true inspiration to all who want to make their mark on the world.

Final Thoughts

Kanye West is one of the most successful and influential musicians of our time. Sure, he’s had his moments of controversy over the years, but that often comes with the territory of fame.

Hopefully this Kanye story will act as a form of inspiration to every person out there who intends to chase their dreams. So, if that sounds like you, just remember that it’s important to think about how you can integrate the lessons learned from Kanye West into our own lives and use them to achieve success.

That said, we can summarize the Kanye West success story with three important points: dedication, hard work, and perseverance. No matter what obstacles you face in life, if your chasing your dream, keep pushing forward and working hard, and you can eventually achieve the success you’re after.

Until you reach those aims,



[1] Complex: The Story Behind Kanye West’s 90’s Chicago Rap Group , The Go-Getters

[2] Britannica: Kanye West

[3] GQ: How Adidas Uncancelled Yeezy

Continue Reading

Strive Stories




Kevin Hart Success Story

Kevin Hart is a household name these days, but this wasn’t always the case. Before he became the highly successful comedian, actor, and producer that we all love to be entertained by these days, he experienced his fair share of struggle, challenges and failure. And now that he’s broken into Hollywood, won countless awards, and built up an impressive fortune himself, we aim to unravel exactly how he managed to do so in this Kevin Hart Success Story special.

“Everybody That’s Successful Lays A Blueprint Out.”

– kevin hart –

Before we dive into his story, know this, we agree with Kevin Hart. Success lays a blueprint, which is why we investigate the inspiring success stories of icons like Kevin Hart.  We know every story has something to teach, and if you want to learn about success, then success stories such as this one will do the trick. That said, if you’re ready to learn how Kevin Hart went from being a shoe salesmen to one of the highest paid entertainers in the world, let’s jump right into his inspiring story.


Kevin Hart Success Story

Note: We are reader-supported. If you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Early Days | The Kevin Hart Success Story

Kevin Hart was born in Philadelphia, PA on July 6th, 1979, and into what many would consider a challenging home life. Hart’s mother essentially raised him, as his father was rarely around due to alcoholism, drug addiction, and consistent jailtime. Thus, Hart’s father did not actively participate in raising him.

After Hart’s mother limited his and his one sibling’s (an older brother) time with their father, due to his negative influence (i.e. stealing money from the family, coming around the kids high, being reckless, etc..) they would ultimately have to make due in without their father in one of the toughest neighborhoods, with just one committed parent at the helm.

Fortunately, Kevin Hart’s mother was a strong religious woman with a good head on her shoulders. She was a mother who always encouraged her kids to better themselves, and to set big goals and strive to achieve them.

She not only gave great advice to her kids, but she lived out what she preached, and set a good example by continually seeking to better herself, educate herself and grow in her career.

To cope with his troubled upbringing, and the negative cloud over his home life, Hart would turn to comedy. In fact, he would leverage much of the trauma he experienced in his younger years, into much of his early comedic material.

As a fan of stand-up comedy from a young age, Kevin Hart would eventually give his dream a shot once he graduated high school.

The Struggle

Kevin Hart’s debut into the world of stand-up was not walk in the park. In fact, it was an uphill battle for him. He gave the stage a shot initially in Philadelphia after some his co-workers informed of the opportunity, and encouraged him to give it a shot, but bombed the show.

He then moved to shows in New York, and sought out gigs in Massachusetts as well. Hart would commute nearly 2 hours daily to New York from Philadelphia to try and get noticed in the big New York comedy clubs.

Hart was making moves, but he struggled initially. From getting booed off the stage, to having chicken thrown at him, his act wasn’t an instant winner.

Despite his best efforts and even working a side gig as a shoe salesmen, Hart eventually fell behind on his rent and faced the threat of eviction.

Kevin Hart Story of Success Quote

Fortunately, his mom believed in him, and helped him get back on his feet. She supported Hart by paying for his rent for a whole year while he strived to make a name for himself, under the condition that if things didn’t work out after this trial period he’d go college.[1] Fortunately for Hart, and all of us (current and future fans) he was determined to make a name for himself.

Despite the awkward silences, the boos, and the bombed shows, Kevin remained fearless, and kept doing shows. And with every bad joke, and every failed show, he slowly and methodically improved his craft. Things especially changed for Hart when he realized his strategy of trying to be like every other big name comedian wasn’t working.

Thus, once Kevin stepped into his own authentic act, people really started to take notice and that’s when his career began to take off.

Rising To The Top

People started to take note of Kevin Hart’s brilliant comedy. Oddly, Kevin Hart’s fame in the world of comedy really took off, but only after others began stealing his acts.

But Hart’s ambition was to be more than just a stand-up comedian. He also wanted to make his way into Hollywood and become an comedic actor. So, he took action and went for it.

Eventually, Hart landed his first movie role in the movie “Paper Soldiers”. He then made it on the air for a short lived pilot in 2001, which never got picked up. Then, just three years later, Hart landed his own sitcom known as “The Big House.”

However, the show would last for only six episodes, marking a very short-lived run.

Slow And Steady Wins The Race

But, Hart didn’t lose heart. Even though the plug was pulled on his sitcom, he didn’t quit. He kept on pursuing his comedy career, waiting for his next big Hollywood opportunity to arise while he did stand-up around the country and took on smaller roles in various movies like Scary Movie” 3 & 4, “The 40 Year-Old Virgin”, “Barbershop”, and “Little Fockers”.

After awhile though, all those small roles started turning into medium-sized roles, and as he racked up more and more roles, the bigger opportunities started coming in, like major multi-million dollar comedy tours and landing serious roles in major blockbuster hits like “Ride Along”, “Get Hard”, “Central Intelligence”, “Jumanji”, “Jumanji: Next Level”, and many more.[2]

And he’s been going strong ever since. With 96 and growing acting credits under his belt, Hart has managed to successfully build for himself a decent-sized multi-million dollar fortune.

On top of this, he’s also the founder of the fast growing multi-million dollar media company known as Hartbeat.[3] Needless to say, Hart has this “success thing” figured out.

Related: Kevin Hart’s Net Worth

Kevin Hart’s Success Ethos

Kevin Hart followed his passion to become a world-class entertainer. But it took more than just passion for him to achieve the massive success he now enjoys. In fact, it could be said that Kevin Hart’s success is a biproduct of his work-ethic, grit, and comedic genius.

However, he has his own take on exactly what allowed him to be so successful. So, in his Kevin Hart’s own words, this is why he succeeded:

Kevin Hart persisted in the face of failure and rejection, and if you want success, he believes you should too…

1. “If you give up at the first sign of struggle, you’re really not ready to be successful.” – Kevin Hart

Kevin Hart didn’t just dream about success, he took action to make it a reality. There’s no denying that he encourages you to do the same…

2. “The best tip I could give you is to be ACTIVE. So many people TALK about what they want to do and they just love words. Don’t be a talker, BE A DOER.” – Kevin Hart

Hart believes that hard work and determination are critical components to success, and that without these two ingredients, success is impossible. So pay he to his success wisdom when he says…

3. “Hard work and determination equals success. Nothing comes easy. Put your mind to something.” – Kevin Hart

Lastly, Kevin Hart doesn’t just work to work. He believes that if you’re going to be putting in the effort, it should at least be towards getting better. So, don’t just work to work, work to improve, to grow, and to add value. In other words, commit to continuous improvement, a.k.a. kaizen

4. “It’s not about being perfect, it’s about being better.” – Kevin Hart

Related: Kevin Hard Quotes On Success

More Success Insights

Hopefully these four Kevin Hart insights paint a clear picture of his success ethos. However, if you’re looking for a bit more, you can now learn Hart’s blueprint for success directly from the legend himself.

Masterclass has partnered with Kevin Hart, giving him a powerful platform to actually teach people how to use humor to make their mark. You can learn more about it below:


Final Thoughts

There you have it, Kevin Hart’s story. We covered his journey of growing up with an absent father in a troubled household, to then struggling to make rent as he pursued his dream. To then reaching the heights of achievement after many years of persisting in the face of rejection, long commutes, and even longer days.

We also covered the success ethos that we believed helped Kevin Hart find success. And we provided the success wisdom that he’s laid out for all to learn from. Here are those combined success insights once again as a quick recap:

Work Ethic | Grit | Taking Action | Kaizen

You now have some of Kevin’s secrets to success, but it’s up to you to apply them to your life. Wishing you all the best on your journey to success.

Till you reach your aims,


PS – If you enjoyed our Kevin Hart Story on success, then you’ll likely enjoy reading about these equally inspiring stories of struggle and success.

Continue Reading

Strive Stories




Motivational Stories

It’s a fact, success eludes most people (at least at first).  And chances are high it’s even eluded you once or twice too. This initial elusiveness of success is the reason we’ve pulled together this collection of motivational stories for you. Our aim is to convince you that success won’t evade you forever. Especially if you decide to press on and stay the course no matter what.

We know success is elusive for everyone. At least it is initially.   Success is tricky, it evades, dodges, and ducks away from just about every single person who pursues her. And this is especially the case early in the chase.

The great news is, that success can be found and captured. But, it is only done so by the truly committed. These “lucky few” eventually reach their aim because they discover the qualities that must be possessed before they can win the game. Qualities such as high effort, courage, and self-discipline.

But most importantly, they’ll discover success because they learn how to master the most difficult success quality of them all. Which is, believe it or not… staying power.

Staying power; otherwise known as determined persistence and never giving in, is what helps people reach their eventual destination.

There’s No Magic Pill

Now, if there were a magic pill we could give you to help you become a human battering ram, the type of battering ram that hammers away on the doors of success until it gets through, we’d give it to you.  But, no such pill exists.

However, what we can give you is a few motivational stories to inspire a stronger belief that you can succeed, if you will but persist. And that’s what we have here for you today friend.  11 short motivational stories to help you strengthen your staying power. 11 stories to help you reach your goals and win.

So, if you want to give those doors of success a real scare, read these 11 motivational stories about striving with the utmost care.


Best Motivational Stories

1. Paulo Coelho

When ‘The Alchemist’ was first published some 30 some years ago, no one noticed. A bookseller in the northeast corner of the country told the author, Paulo Coelho, that only one person purchased a copy during that first week when it was released.  Un-phased by the silent reception, Paulo Coelho confidently waited for those next few sales to come in.  And he would wait a long time too, as it took six more months before his second copy was sold—and it was sold to the exact same person who bought the first!

By the end of that first year, Paulo Coelho’s publisher lost hope in his book and so decided to cancel his contract and cut him loose.

But, Paulo Coelho didn’t let that demoralizing rejection paralyze him.  Instead of quitting like many would at this point, he decided to be steadfast, and continued to pursue his vision.  So, he looked for another publisher.  He looked, and looked, and looked until he finally found one.  And with it, he found his second chance.

Once his book was published again, it slowly started to sell by word of mouth.  His persistence started to pay off, as he eventually sold three thousand books, then six, then ten.  Month over month year over year his book sales started to grow.  And now… ‘The Alchemist’ has sold over 150 million copies across the world.

It’s a good thing Paulo Coelho had staying power.  Had he quit, he wouldn’t be who he is today, a literary legend.

2. Michael Jordan

Most people don’t know this, but when Michael Jordan was a sophomore in high school, he was eager to prove himself as a great basketball player.  As such, he tried out for the Varsity squad.    But guess what?  Things didn’t go as planned.  Jordan got cut from the team.

Considering he had such big dreams as a star basketball player, that rejection hit him really hard.  In fact, it hit him so hard that he went home, locked himself in his room, and cried.

Now Jordan cried, cried, and cried, but he didn’t quit.  He picked himself up and decided to at least crush it on the JV squad.  And crush it he did.  He also decided to train his ass off in the off season.  He even grew four inches.  And then that next year, Michael Jordan did what all winners do….he tried again.

This time, however, he made the team, and quickly became the school’s best player.  By the time he was a senior, he made the McDonalds’ All-American team.  Then he went off to play in college…and the rest is history.

Michael Jordan didn’t quit.  Instead he transformed his failure into fuel for future success.  He then used that fuel to become “The Michael Jordan”.  The man who would score 32,292 points in his basketball career, acquire 6 NBA championships, collect 5 MVP titles, and come to be known to many, as the GOAT (Greatest of all time).

So, the moral of this motivational story is that no, doesn’t mean never.

motivational stories quote - mj

3. Lionel Messi

If you keep up with soccer, then you’ve probably heard of Lionel Messi.  At age of 11, Messi was cut from his soccer team because he was too small.  He was diagnosed with a growth hormone deficiency which made him much smaller than most kids his age.

However, Messi didn’t let this stop him.  Instead, week after week after week, every day, before going to sleep, he would inject growth hormones into himself.  Messi would do this for seven days in one leg, then seven days in the other, for six long years.

Fortunately, Messi’s foresight and persistence paid off.  Now, he is one of the highest paid soccer players, having a net worth of over 400 million, is considered one of the best soccer players of all time, and has won soccer’s greatest achievement, ‘The Ballon d’Or’ eight times.

Even when it seems nature is against you at first, she bends to those with a strong will who are determined to reach their goals.

4. Steven Pressfield

Steven Pressfield is a professional hero to many, especially authors.  Here’s why….

It took Steven Pressfield 17 years before he made his first dollar as a writer.  He wrote for 27 years before he got his first novel published (The Legend of Bagger Vance).

During that time, Steven worked at 21 different jobs in eleven states.  He taught school, drove tractor-trailers, worked in advertising and as a screenwriter in Hollywood, he worked on offshore oil rigs, and even picked fruit as a migrant worker, but he never gave up.  Sure, he had to go back and work for “the man” from time to time, but he kept his eye on the prize; his dream.

This is why his pursuit of his passion is the epitome of staying power.

Now, Steven is the author of over 21 books and is a source of inspiration for authors and creative people around the world.

Art is war, and so is finding success in general.  So, if your dreams are slow to come don’t lose heart, just remember Steven Pressfield, and be willing to fight long and hard for your art.

short motivational stories - steven pressfield

5. Steven Spielberg

Steven Spielberg’s journey to becoming well, Steven Spielberg is a fantastic motivational story. Here’s why, Spielberg was rejected from USC film school three times. But that didn’t stop him, instead, he just tried a different school.  He applied to Cal State, Long Beach, and got into their film program.  And while still a student a Cal State, he landed an unpaid internship at Universal Studios.  It was a fortuitous gig that soon led his dropping out.  It was a calculated move that would allow him to rub elbows with movie makers at Universal Studios to shortening his path to fulfilling his dream.

Unfortunately, his internship didn’t last long enough for him to break into the movie business like he had planned.  But, undeterred, Steven would still sneak in to the studios, pretending to work there so he could learn more about movies until he could catch his break.

Legend has it, that he had an 8 mm film that he knew the studio executives would love, if only they would watch it.  He found a way to get it into their hands, but they flip flopped on him, and then said they would only watch it if he shot it on a 16-mm film.  So, Steven went out and rented a 16-mm camera and reshot the whole movie.  When he brought it back to the executives, they told him not to come back until it was on a 35-mm film.  Undeterred, he jumped through their hoops and reshot the movie on the 35-mm film.

Finally, the executives decided to relent and gave his movie a look.  And the rest is history.  The movie went on to win a prize at the Atlanta film festival and helped Steven lock in a 7-year contract directing movies with Universal.

No doubt, If you keep looking for your break, the day will come when you find it.

6. Stephen King

Before he was the king of horror, Stephen King was essentially a starving artist. Money was so scarce in his early writing days, that he and his wife had to live in a trailer, couldn’t afford a telephone, had to borrow clothes for their wedding, and worked multiple jobs to support their family and keep the lights on.

But, the pull of his dream to write was greater that his economic plight.

On top of the financial challenges Stephen King faced, he, like most authors, experienced lots of rejection.  In fact, he received 60 rejections before selling his first story, “The Glass Floor” for a measly $35.  But, he kept on writing, striving, and struggling, until he eventually sold his next story.  And fortunately, his next story would set him up to write full-time, forever.  What was the name of that book?  “Carrie”.

Having published over 200 short stories, 58 novels, and selling over 350 million copies, Stephen King is not just the king of horror, he’s also the king of staying power.

motivational story quote stephen king

7. Walt Disney

Everyone knows who this legend is.  But, did you know before Walt Disney was “The Walt Disney”, he had once been fired because his boss thought he lacked imagination and had no good ideas?

We know, it’s crazy to think that he would ever be considered the opposite of what he ended up being so great at.

Fortunately, Walt Disney didn’t listen to his critics, and pressed on to create his own cartoon animation company.  Now, just because he pressed on doesn’t mean he hit it big right away.  He would go on to experience a few additional failures along the way (along with few small successes), but ultimately, he kept on pressing forward, innovating, and improving on his love for animation.

And, well…he eventually smashed through those doors of success and went on to become the creator of the household name that we’ve all come to know and love.

Truly, every success, at some time or another, has had to learn how to believe in themselves when no one else on this big blue planet is willing to hold the same belief.  And the chances are high you’ll have to do the same.

So, when someone tries to halt your vision, just remember good ole Walt Disney.  Ignore your critics, believe in yourself, and get yourself back into the game.

8. Jack Canfield & MVH

The authors of the now famous ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ series of books faced massive obstacles when first starting out.  Some publishers said their books would never sell.  Others said that their title was stupid, and that nobody bought collections of short stories.

Undeterred, this dynamic duo went on to reach out to publisher after publisher.  They suffered through 123 rejections before things started to look up for them.

Fortunately, they didn’t take no for an answer, because they eventually found stratospheric success with their books, and as a result have sold over 500 million books across the world.

Now Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (MVH) are practically household names.

If it wasn’t for their staying power and dogged perseverance, they never would have become the founders of one of the most successful publishing franchises in the world today.

jack canfield motivational stories quote

9. Howard Shultz

Thanks to the persistence and tenacity of Howard, today we can enjoy a delicious Starbucks coffee as we work at our computers in just about every city in the United States of America.

Most people don’t know this, but when Howard Shultz was just starting out, he was finding it very difficult to convince investors to write him a check.   It would take more than 214 rejections before he found someone who believed in his idea enough to help him fund it.

Now that’s staying power.  But that’s not all.  In it’s infancy, his company also incurred losses for three straight years.  And on one of those early years, 1989 to be exact, he incurred more than $1 million in losses alone.

Fortunately, he managed to stick with his goal, and completely turned his company around and into one of the strongest brands on the planet. Had he not remained determined to reach his goals, he never would have.

Howard Shultz is now a legend, and his efforts have made his pursuit a classic motivational story that everyone should know about.

10. Robert Kiyosaki

The man behind the extremely successful ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ brand, Robert Kiyosaki is a prime example of persistence in action.

His first business sold those cool looking velcro wallet’s that were all the rage in the 80’s.  Unfortunately, he didn’t protect his product with patents and eventually went bankrupt after competitors snatched up most of his market share.

But he persisted, and soon after went on to start another company that sold licensed apparel for heavy metal bands, unfortunately, that company would eventually flounder as well.

He kept pressing forward though, seeking his one-way ticket out of the rat race.    While working for the Xerox company to pay the bills, he kept striving to build a business.  Eventually, he found success when his first financial education company took off.  Soon after, he then sold that company and leveraged his new-found wealth to become the wealth guru and best-selling author he is today.

Robert Kiyosaki didn’t know ‘the how’, because hardly any of us do.  But, he knew ‘the where’.  He knew where he wanted to go, and kept moving forward, failure after failure until he got there.

motivational stories about goals

11. Steve Harvey

Steve Harvey, the now famous American television presenter, comedian, actor, author, and game show host has a great motivational story. Harvey was once a struggling, starving artist. And before he would become the famous host of ‘Family Feud’, and essentially a household name, he had to conquer many obstacles first.

In Harvey’s early days, when he was just in grade school, after being asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, he shared with his teacher and his entire class that he wanted to be on T.V. After speaking about his dreams, his teacher lambasted him, and assured him that he would never make it on Television. His teacher told him that his dream was impossible because no one in his community ever made it on T.V… Nor would he make it in the show business because he had a speech impediment.

But, Harvey didn’t let his teacher dismantle his dream. No, he would strive and struggle to make a name for himself after getting out of school. And for nearly 12 years after he turned 18, he would do small stand up comedy gigs, and local shows to break into show biz.

Interestingly, on the day he was considering giving up, instead of calling his dad to tell him he quit, he called an answering machine his parents set up for him for anyone who was looking to get in touch with him. And on that answering machine was a message from the Apollo Comedy Club inviting him to come on to their show.

Delighted by the invitation, Harvey pounced on the opportunity. And once he got on T.V., he never looked back. Steve Harvey has been on T.V. ever since.

motivational story about steve harvey

Bonus Motivational Story:

Here’s one last and final motivational story. It is one that you may already be familiar with as they made a movie about it. This story is about about Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger, a 5 foot 6 inch man who dreamed of playing football for Notre Dame.

Rudy was dyslexic, undersized, and wasn’t gifted with the exceptional speed or strength that’s typically found amongst many other football players. He didn’t receive any scholarships to play football, nor was he invited to play anywhere, but he stayed true to his dream, so he walked-on to the team.

As a member of the scout team, he tried and tried again to make the official team, striving to do whatever it took to suite up in the blue and gold and enter the arena as a Fighting Irish football player.

He would go on to struggle for four long years. He would pour his heart into each practice, giving each one his full effort, all for one single moment. Rudy poured his soul into everything he did, and he did it for one single opportunity to get on to the field and play.

His grit and dedication to reaching his life’s goal of getting on that field inspired his entire team, community, and thousands of Fighting Irish fans. Rudy’s determination, heart, and commitment to never quitting helped him finally fulfill his dream of playing for the Fighting Irish.

On the last three plays of the last game of the season, Rudy finally got his shot. His coach put him in with very little time left on the clock, but Rudy seized his moment of glory. And on the final play of the game, Rudy sacked the quarterback.

Rudy’s persistence, dogged determination, and commitment to his dream, led him to becoming the first player in Notre Dame history to ever get carried off the field by his teammates.

motivational story quote by Rudy

Related: Keep Moving Forward Quotes

Final Thoughts

The key takeaways from these motivational stories is the following: No does not mean never, and the struggle won’t last forever, but if you lack staying power, success will inevitably evade you altogether.

The road to success is filled with no’s, rejections, mishaps and failures along the way.  But, despite all the obstacles, if you want to achieve your aims, you must decide to keep going every single day.

So, if you’ve learned anything from these motivational stories we hope it is this:  That there are only two rules when it comes to success.  Rule number one, never give up.  Rule number two, never forget rule number one.

Till next time,


PS – If you enjoyed these motivational stories about goals and achieving your dreams, and you’re looking for some more inspiration, then you’ll love these other powerful success stories that we’ve pulled together. But, if you’re just looking for some additional motivation, then you’ll these awesome quotes on motivation for winning will do the trick.

Continue Reading