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From Rags to Riches: 5 Stories to Motivate You

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Thursday, March 14, 2024

Learning the rags-to-riches stories of wealthy, famous, and creative minds can boost your pursuit of your own life goals. Discovering how others pulled themselves up by their bootstraps and overcame obstacles motivates and inspires the rest of us.

Their stories remind readers that the most successful people often come from humble beginnings. Like them, you can achieve greatness, too.

​We all have what it takes to fulfill our purposes in life and turn our passions into lucrative careers or philanthropic endeavors. Their stories can be our stories, too.


Mindset Matters

Learning the success stories of others helps shift our mindset into the right gear. We gain:

  • A millionaire mindset – We start thinking like a millionaire–always progressing, keeping our eyes peeled for opportunities, and investing time and money wisely.
  • A growth mindset – We don’t have to be perfect to start accomplishing lifelong goals. We just need the right attitude that says we are capable of gaining the necessary skills when we work hard.
  • The law of attraction – Like magnets, we attract the right things to us when we start acting like the successful people we are destined to become.

Having the above three attributes adds extra oomph to your efforts. They’ll improve your odds of success and keep you going when the going gets tough.

The following stories will help solidify your mindset to make and achieve lifelong goals. After reading these, you’ll never again think you’ve been dealt “a bad hand” in life or that the odds are too stacked against you to dream big and go for it.

​Here are the tales of others who never stopped setting the bar, reaching it, and setting it higher. We hope they motivate and inspire you to achieve your heart’s desires.


1. Napoleon Hill

Oliver Napoleon Hill cunningly crafted a life he dreamed of. Napoleon Hill’s books arguably started the lucrative self-help genre that paved the way for the famous motivational speakers of today, like Tony Robbins.

​Some might describe his early life as lonely and full of mischief. He lost his mother at the age of nine and grew closer to his stepmother than his own father. A storyteller through and through, he used his creativity and unbounded interest in the psychology of successful people to write “Think and Grow Rich,” building a legacy on thinking one’s way to success.


2. Oprah Winfrey

A household name, Oprah is best known for her successful talk show spanning two decades from the 1980s to the 2000s. She became the first black female billionaire. However, she endured things as a kid no child should ever experience.

Born to a single teenage mother, Winfrey’s grandmother raised her until she fell too ill to do so. Winfrey went on to live in extreme poverty. Repeatedly molested by a family member, she ran away from home at 13 and had a baby at 14 who died within weeks of birth.

​Still, Winfrey valued education and thrived in high school and college. She became well-spoken and well-read. Her excellent communication skills led to a job reading the news on the radio. Later, she co-hosted a morning news show and eventually went solo. She built a media empire and used her vast fortune for philanthropic endeavors.


3. Andrew Carnegie

Carnegie and his family were poor Scottish immigrants. He never wanted to beg for work like his dad often did, so he worked hard to make himself indispensable at any task.

​Andrew Carnegie’s humble beginnings of working in a cotton factory morphed into a life as a steel tycoon building and running his Carnegie Steel Corporation. Using his immense wealth, he embarked on a lifetime of philanthropy, including establishing libraries and educational institutions.


4. Chris Gardner

As depicted in the movie “The Pursuit of Happyness,” Gardner endured extreme poverty and homelessness while raising his young son as a single father. He overcame adversity through hard work and sheer determination to become a successful stockbroker, entrepreneur, and millionaire. He eventually founded his own brokerage firm and became a critically acclaimed author, motivational speaker, and philanthropist.


5. Howard Schultz

The Starbucks magnate can teach us a lot about perseverance. Growing up in the Brooklyn projects, Schultz faced financial hardship and even struggled to afford his college education. However, he became Starbucks's CEO, transforming the company from a local coffee retailer into a global powerhouse. Schultz’s determination, vision, and innovative leadership propelled Starbucks to unprecedented success, becoming an international household name.


Taking a Page From the Greats

Many people worldwide and throughout history have overcome big odds and achieved greatness (and not always with money). These are just a few inspirational tales that can motivate you and set your mind on growth and success.

None of them became successful overnight. They had a goal and took a million little steps to reach it. They all had setbacks; some started so entangled in setbacks that their achievements are super impressive.

They are good reminders that we all have it in us to do the same. We won’t all end up on TV or the subjects of university business classes. However, we were all born with interests and talents to pursue. We’re all capable of strengthening our weaknesses or partnering with those who excel where we fall short.

​Stay in the right headspace that says ‘You can do it.” by utilizing our online library on mindset and success. When you believe, you can achieve.


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