Posted by Tommy Runfola | June 19, 2016
Not everyone’s path is the same in life. We were each given different talents and different challenges to overcome. Most of us were not born with a silver spoon in our mouths. But far too often people focus on what they DON’T have and what they WEREN’T given by the powers that be, instead of focusing on the power within them to make their life SOMETHING INCREDIBLE AND INSPIRING!
Here are a few of my favorite rags to riches stories, of people throughout history who made it to the top of their game despite starting from the bottom. This list includes both financial rags to riches stories, and also people who have triumphed in other fields such as sport and music.
Alexander the Great (356 – 323 BC) Despite mixed claims to the Macedonian throne. The half Macedonian Alexander consolidated his power, before embarking on a global conquest stretching from the Aegean to India.
Frederick Douglass (1818-1895) -A former slave, Douglass escaped to became a leading figurehead in the anti-slavery movement. One of the most prominent African American leaders of the Nineteenth Century. His income from his books and lecture circuit enabled him to purchase a home and 15 acres (61,000 m²) of land in Washington D.C.
Andrew Carnegie (1835 – 1919) Born in a one-roomed weavers cottage in Dunfermline, Scotland. His family emigrated to America when he was 13 because of their extreme poverty. His first job in Pennsylvania was as a bobbin boy for $1.20 a week. But, he went on to dominate the US steel industry, amassing a personal fortune. By his death, he had given away $4.8 billion (2010 terms)
Samuel Walton ( 1918 – 1992) Growing up in the great depression of the 1930s, Walton had to milk family cow and do numerous odd jobs to help family survive. After the war, he took out a loan to buy a small grocery store. He went on to build this into the giant Walmart supermarket chain, amassing a fortune of over $23 billion (1992)
Pele (1940 – ) (Brazil, footballer) Pele grew up in poverty in Sao Paulo. He could not afford a proper football and practised with an improvised ball of newspaper. Aged 15, he signed with Santos FC. He went on to the greatest footballer of the century, winning three World Cups with Brazil, and scoring 1281 goals in 1363 games. Since retirement Pele has become a global ambassador for sport and is a well known advocate for overcoming poverty.
Richard Branson (1950 – ) At school he was an academic failure, and left without any qualifications, Starting his own record shop with a small loan, Richard Branson became one of the most colourful and successful businessmen in the UK.
Steve Jobs (1955 – 2011) Steve Jobs struggled with formal education, dropping out of college. He went on to be co-founder of Apple Computers, and a leading exponent of the personal computer revolution. His net wealth in 2010 was estimated to be $8.2 billion
Susan Boyle (1961 – ) At the age of 48, Susan Boyle had only ever sung to her local parish. She led a quiet life looking after her mother and cat, she was unmarried but still dreamed of being a famous singer. After getting a break on ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ She became one of the fastest selling debut artists of all time.
Oprah Winfrey (1954 – ) Oprah Winfrey was born in rural Mississippi and brought up in inner-city Milwaukee, despite her difficult upbringing, she became one of the best known American TV personalities and the founder of the highly successful Oprah brand.
John Lennon (1940 – 1980) Brought up in Liverpool, Lennon was expelled from college and left without any O Level qualifications. He rose to fame as the founder of the Beatles and also his influential solo career.
So, get back out there and keep fighting for your biggest dreams!!