#069 – Overcoming Obstacles

#069 – Overcoming Obstacles

“To live this life. To live it with wholeness and gratitude and trust. In the pain and the glory. In the mess and the grace. In the sacred and the desperation. This is the stuff of which real superheros are born.”

Jeannette LeBlanc

The chances are that if you find an entrepreneur on the street and ask his or her advice on what is the most important thing to have in order to be successful, chances are this person will return your question with some form of the word “resilience”. Whether you’re venturing on a tech start-up from your garage, operating a construction business, or work in some form of consulting, the odds are that things won’t go smoothly for you-that’s where the true entrepreneurs are born.

Resilience or “grit” as it’s referred to by some, is the ability to look past the misfortunes and mistakes that come along with building a business. It’s the insight to keep moving when life punches you in the chin. It’s resilience that keeps someone from giving up on their idea because that person has so much conviction to be successful that absolutely nothing can stop them from reaching their goal. If things start to get tough, and they will, resilience will be the saving grace that moves the company past the dark-age and into success.

When considering the meaning of the word “resilience” and its application to entrepreneurship, I couldn’t help but to be blown away by the two examples mentioned in this week’s episode.

Oprah Winfrey, by many accounts, is the most powerful woman in show business. She’s amassed a fortune worth billions of dollars with countless products mentioning her name. Her influence on pop culture is so large that the media has created a craze called “The Oprah Effect” which basically turns and book, product, or service that she mentions into an immediate best seller. However, things weren’t always so glamourous for the television legend. Her journey into stardom was riddled with obstacles and circumstances that would have forced many others to give up had they been in her shoes. In this episode, we deconstruct the journey that led Oprah from a rural town in Mississippi into being one of the most influential women the world has ever seen.

Our second story reflects on another amazingly impressive individual-Rose Blumkin.

While not being a television star or a pop icon, “Mrs. B”, as referenced by Warren Buffett, was quite an example of resilience.

Her trip from Minsk, Belarus into America was difficult and ill-timed. Shortly after arriving into America, this 4’11” businesswoman was faced with the harsh realities of The Great Depression. While many would say that having little money, almost no ability to speak English, and living in a broken economy would be cause to hold off with starting a business, Mrs. B saw otherwise.

Both personalities mentioned in today’s episode are truly inspiring figures that point out that despite unforgiving circumstances, one can be successful. All that’s required is a little bit of resilience.

In this episode, you’ll discover:

  • Resilience and its importance to being successful
  • Oprah Winfrey’s backstory and how she came to be worth 3 billion dollars
  • The story of retail queen Rose Blumkin
  • Why the most successful people have the biggest setbacks
  • Why the cliche “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” stands true
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