Some people believe that a person’s mindset is what differentiates them from the rest. On the other hand, some believe that something that is tangible (example: money) is what distinguishes one from another. Can anyone become successful and rich?
For instance, they’d believe that those that are born in rich families have higher chances of making it big than an average person. This prediction seems reasonable as those that belong to wealthy families usually have access to good education, healthcare and safety cushion in case of failures. After all, capitalism favors the rich, right?
So, who is right?
As an average person with limited access to resources, can you really make it big?
Well. Let’s let the data speak.
According to Forbes, in 1982, about 38% of America’s wealthiest people were self-made.
In 2012, this percentage jumped to 70%.
Therefore, the belief that you need to have a “rich dad” in order to become rich is outdated.
In fact, a millionaire on average goes bankrupt 3-4 times before he/she gets wealthy permanently.
We cannot deny that access to resources and opportunities helps one out; however, it does not mean that a person cannot achieve success without the same. Having a rich dad also does not guarantee your success.
For example, the son of the famous Kung Fu movie star Jackie Chan only came to limelight when he was jailed in China for a drug offense. In fact, at times, people who belong to wealthy families may feel entitled and less motivated to work hard.
A motivational speaker, Tony Robins, claims that ’80% of the credit for success can be attributed to the mindset and only 20% to the techniques.’ The sheer number of self-made billionaires is a testament to this.
What about the resources? You may be thinking, “resources surely make a difference, right?”
Well. It’s not quite the resources that make a difference; rather, it's your resourcefulness. That is your willingness to go out of the way to acquire the resources that are necessary for your success.
Here is an example - Sylvester Stallone rose to fame as the leading actor of film “Rocky” (1976).
He was born with partial facial paralysis which in turn hindered his ability to pronounce words clearly. This inability led him to fail tons of auditions – he was faced with constant rejections. Since persistence was not on his side, he decided to try something new. That is when he decided to write a script – Rocky. The script was so good that he could demand the producers to cast him if they wished to acquire the script. We already know the end result of this film – it was a world-wide success.
This is an excellent example of “resourcefulness” – if something doesn't work, try something new; if it still doesn't work, try something new…until something finally works!
Here is another example of resourceful behavior that absolutely blew me away –
This is a story about Dani Johnson. When she was 21, she was homeless. She was living in her car, was waitressing and had a debt of $35,000. Her childhood was tough – she was not only a victim of sexual and physical abuse but was also lonely and suicidal as her parents succumbed to drug abuse. One fine day, she thought,
“This is not what is intended for your life… There is more to life.”
Yet, her inner critic tormented her with words like, “You are filthy. You are useless. You are a loser.”
She really tried hard to not pay heed to the inner critic. Instead, she thought hard as to what she should do to change her situation. History has shown that such a mind-set is a powerful start to a successful life. When one feels that they are entitled to “more” in life and are aware that they are responsible for their surrounding situation, people feel empowered.
YOU are the ONLY ONE who is responsible for your life.
Not your parents.
Not your friends.
Not the government.
No one. Only you have the power to change things for the better.
So what did Dani Johnson end up doing?
Well. She did not have many resources. So, she scrambled for things at the back of her car and found a ‘weight loss’ pamphlet. She used a nearby pay phone to call the company and ask them ‘how she could help with their sales.’ This is pure resourcefulness.
How Can I Make it Happen?
The manufacturer replied saying that if she were to sell the products in Hawaii, she’d require a license as well as capital to start the distribution.
At this point, most people who are demotivated. Whereas, Dani Johnson instead asked herself, “well, I have no money, but HOW CAN I MAKE IT HAPPEN?”
There was another problem, for this job, she needed to have a phone to be contacted on. But she didn't have one. So she decided to call up the tele-company and subscribe for $50 voice mail services. She then took her pamphlet and put it near the post office, hoping that the high footfall in the area would increase her chances of getting a callback.
In 3 hours, she received 25+ calls. Pretty quickly, she managed to sell over 40 weight loss programs totaling $4000.
Elated, Dani Johnson called the company to tell them that she now has money to start the distribution. Now, there was another problem, they required her physical address. But Johnson was living in her car.
So what did she do?
She managed to convince a local liquor store to allow her to use their address.
By hook or crook, she managed to order the weight loss supplies and start distribution in Howie. In her first year, she made $250,000. In the second year, she hit $ 1 million. Eventually, she opened 18 weight loss centers across the country. In 1996, she sold her business, making her a multi-millionaire.
Sigmund Freud (one of the most famous psychotherapist) said,
“Most people do not really want freedom, because freedom involves responsibility, and most people are frightened of responsibility.”
A lot of people use lack of resources as an excuse for our own failure to achieve success. Your mindset determines 80% of your success. If you don't have resources, you are on the same boat as the vast majority of self-made millionaires were once on.