Zero to Hero - Why working hard leads to success

It is hard to stay motivated when the world seems so grim at the moment - the coronavirus has us on lockdown, many are losing loved ones, and all over the world people are suffering.

It's ok to feel down and overwhelmed - it's a natural way to feel right now. But we need to make sure we don't stay stuck in our melancholy. 

We stumbled across some incredibly inspirational stories of some of the world's best know celebrities who in their early lives and careers faced unimaginable hardship, set backs and real let downs.

Take Barack Obama, for example, who organised community forums when he first started in local government which were literally attended by not a single member of the community! Imagine if he organised a residents meeting now! The local community hall would be full to bursting! 

There aren't many people in the world who don't know the name Oprah Winfrey. Yet her child- and young adulthood were difficult if not horrendous - abuse, a teenage pregnancy, drug addiction. Yet somehow she found her way onto our screens, full of an interest and compassion for others that is inspiring.

Even someone like Thomas Edison, inventor of the light bulb, was deemed “too stupid to learn anything” by his teachers. They must have felt pretty silly when he became one of the most successful, influential and inspiring people in the world.

In 'From Zero to Hero: Top 10 Inspirational Success Stories', we read about Harlan Sanders - founder of fast food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken: "Sanders worked a wide variety of jobs and ran a number of businesses throughout his life, but some incident or just plain bad luck always seemed to hamper him. He lost his job as a lawyer after a brawl with his own client in court. His restaurant and motel were destroyed by fire, and after he rebuilt them, the start of the Second World War forced him to go out of business." Colonel Sanders then tried to promote his fried chicken recipe by driving around the US, sleeping in his car and knocking on every door. He was rejected 1,009 times (!!) until finally someone said yes after which he opened the first KFC franchise in 1952. He was then in his sixties. 

We really recommend you have a read through some of these stories, there are many more in there, including Michael Jordan getting rejected for his school basketball team! Also check out '5 Inspiring People Who Went from Zero to Hero'.

It goes to show that people have faced terrible trials and tribulations before. It's ok to feel blue, but we can't give up. It's also good to see that most of these people who became so successful were driven by a passion for the thing they were trying to do. Nowadays we measure success by money so often, we forget that this is not the only (and perhaps not even the most important) form of success. What all these people have in common is that they truly have something to say, to contribute. They are committed and passionate, and it's inspiring. 

When we finally come out of lock down, it's something we'll have to consider: what is success? Is it really money? Or is it being part of something, helping others, working together as a team which supports you, is it having fun and caring for one another? What do want? And how will we achieve it? If these 'zero to heroes' are anything to go by, it seems we will all need to work hard, and keep working hard, to get to where we want to be.

Top image: Happy - pawankawan on MorgueFile
Bottom image: Happy - estibenari on MorgueFile

Added on 08 May 2020