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Inspiration from Donald Trump

Estimated Lesson Time: 2 minutes (self-evaluated option) / less than a minute (instructor-evaluated option)

Donald Trump (1946–) is a real estate billionaire, best-selling author, and most recently, executive producer of a hit TV show.

(Author's Note in 2017: This book was written in 2004, long before "President Trump." Put aside your political feelings, no matter how strong they may be. Remember what I wrote in the intro—the success biographies are not based on perfect people, but people who we can find inspiration from in some way. If you really have strong, negative feelings for Trump, then skip this day and move on.)

Success is dealing with change, both positive and negative. The Donald Trump story is one of the most incredible stories of financial roller coaster rides there is. He went from a real estate billionaire to being close to $900 million dollars in debt, back to billionaire in a relatively short period.

Success is making your own mark, regardless of your upbringing. Donald was raised in a well-to-do family and had many opportunities and advantages in his youth. Despite his privileged upbringing, he did not inherit anything and went on to fame and fortune through his own business accomplishments.

Success is making the right connections. When Donald first moved to Manhattan, he was practically broke. Regardless, he squandered what money he did have to join one of the city’s most exclusive clubs and met some very influential people.

Success is having an attractive personality. Donald Trump is funny, smart and honest. He is a very likable person who knows the value of honest admiration.

Success is handling pressure. In 1991 when Trump was about $900 million in debt, it was his ability to deal with pressure that allowed him to stay in the game and eventually pull off one of the largest financial comebacks in history.

Success is self-promotion. Donald Trump is a very public figure who uses his popularity to fuel his success. He has appeared in dozens of movies, commercials, and TV shows and currently stars in a reality-based TV series. It is reported that 98% of Americans surveyed know who Donald Trump is.

Success is doing great things for others. There is a story about an unemployed mechanic who once helped Donald Trump get his limo working again after it stalled on the highway. The mechanic did not accept anything for his services besides a “thank you.” Trump was so impressed with the mechanic’s generosity that the next day he sent flowers to the man’s wife, and a letter certifying that the man’s mortgage had been paid off in full.

[Sources: http://www.askmen.com, http://www.nbc.com, http://www.biography.com]

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 Some discussion questions (some may not apply to this lesson):

  • Have you implemented this idea in your life? How has it been working for you?
  • Do you have any interesting stories related to this lesson? Do tell!
  • What do you admire most about this person? (success biography days)
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    Year To Success
    Bo Bennett, PhD

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