My life dream is simple:
I want to create an online business that allows me to leave the corporate lifestyle, provide abundantly for my family, pay off my school debt, and steward my time.
I’ve had some success in this area, making a little bit of money online.
But I’m a long way from achieving my life dream.
And guess what!
I know exactly why I haven’t achieved it.
It’s because I haven’t pursued my dream long enough or put the necessary level of effort into making it a reality.
But I’m confident I will achieve this goal.
Because I won’t quit.
I’ve learned this lesson of persistence in countless areas of life and from friends, mentors, and people I respect.
Here are 6 entrepreneurs whose stories of persistence, passion, and focus are inspiring and illustrate how these qualities are critical ingredients to success.
1. Gary Vaynerchuck
Vaynerchuck is an incredible entrepreneur who leveraged the web to grow his father’s wine business from $3 million to $60 million in annual revenue.
He has since begun an incredibly successful social media agency that helps Fortune 500 companies build their internet brand. (source)
There’s is no other entrepreneur I know of who models persistence, passion, and focus better than Gary Vee.
In every piece of social media he produces he oozes these qualities.
Just watch the above video and you’ll know what I mean.
2. Neil Patel
Neil Patel achieved millionaire status in his twenties with his web analytics companies and blogs.
He has started multiple wildly successful blogs most of which receive over 100,000 monthly visitors.
Just one of his blogs makes over $300,000 a month!
I feel like a broken-record mentioning Neil Patel.
But the reason I keep talking about him on my blog is because of how well he models success.
As he says in the video, Neil works all the time.
He produces blog content like a machine.
And he’s amazingly transparent with his success.
Neil is open about the fact that his blogs are for philanthropic purposes and that he makes all his money from his software companies.
He truly wants to help small and medium-sized businesses achieve success on the web.
3. Bill Gates
Gates doesn’t need an introduction but I’ll give him one anyway.
He dropped out of Harvard in 1975 to found Microsoft, became the richest man in the world, (all of his wealth is self-made), and his foundation has done incredible things for the world to help end poverty and disease in developing countries. (source)
Gates is open about the fact that he was fanatical about software in his 20s and early 30s.
He didn’t take a day off, he didn’t take the weekends off, he didn’t even take a vacation.
How did he do this?
It wasn’t because he had a taskmaster of a boss (he was his own boss), it wasn’t because he was just doing it for the money, it was because he was absolutely passionate about software.
His passion fueled his work such that, to him, it didn’t even feel like work.
He looks back on those days fondly and now seeks to invest money and resources in others that display fanatical passion for their craft. (source)
4. Victor Pride
Victor Pride runs a personal development blog at boldanddetermined.com where he discusses online business, entrepreneurship, and bodybuilding.
Pride is open about his earnings.
After one year of blogging, he made $0.
After two years of blogging, he made $15,000.
After four years of blogging, he made a million in total revenue. (source)
Pride says he accomplished this through relentless persistence.
He talks about he simply outworks others who have tried and failed at becoming a problogger.
He works all the time and he doesn’t quit.
5. Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett is arguably the greatest investor ever.
He’s consistently among the top three richest men in the world, he’s in his 80s, and he shows no signs of slowing down or retiring.
If you look at the above graph of his net worth, you’ll notice exponential growth occurring right around the time most people are retiring or winding down their careers.
He’s a stunning example of someone who discovered his passion at a young age and has pursued it ever since.
The graph of his net worth might as well be a graph of the returns anyone experiences as they persistently pursue their passion day-by-day.
Buffett has achieved what so many long for, and it’s not extreme wealth!
Buffett’s wealth is a side-effect of his passion, namely analyzing and investing in good companies.
What Buffett has that people really want is:
Freedom to pursue their passion,
Flexibility in how they pursue it,
And the capacity to pursue their passion for as long as they live.
6. Jon Morrow
Jon Morrow has a rare type of muscular dystrophy causing paralysis throughout his body.
Most people that have this disease don’t live past age 2.
Jon is middle-aged.
Jon has an unbelievable life story about a mom who wouldn’t quit on him, who nursed him back from pneumonia 16 times, and who always fought for his greatness.
This relentless desire to make her son have a wonderful life instilled in Jon a relentless desire to be great.
Despite all the odds stacked against him, Jon has become a wildly successful blogger.
He’s fought to make his ideas known through blogging with a ferocity that’s astounding. (source)
Whenever I’m tempted to think that I’m underprivileged or have the odds stacked against me, Jon’s life story gives me the metaphorical slap across the face reminding me that I have absolutely no excuse to not achieve my dreams.
What’s the common theme among these entrepreneurs who have achieved greatness?
It’s consistent work across a long period of time.
It’s that they don’t give up.
They overcome adversity.
They never quit.