Life is challenging for so many of us right now, so we put together some inspirational stories of success to give you encouragement and hope. We selected stories that will give you courage to push past challenges and overcome obstacles. Be encouraged if you are in a tough spot. Struggle is a part of every good story.
Your story can be one of overcoming too. And we’d love to hear from you about how you overcame obstacles, who helped you along the way, and what it feels like to be on the other side.
Inspirational Stories About Famous People Overcoming Failure and Struggle
Looking at famous success stories can make it hard for you to imagine that they ever experienced failure. But the truth is that every success story involves failure. In fact, most successful people attribute their success to failure.
A Sports Hero
If there’s one name you would not associate with failure, it’s probably Michael Jordan. But Michael Jordan’s story is one of overcoming, too. His path to success wasn’t easy and straightforward.
He Didn’t Make The Team
“I have missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games. On 26 occasions I have been entrusted to take the game-winning shot, and I missed. I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”Michael Jordan
When Michael Jordan’s high school cut him from the basketball team his sophomore year. He worked hard and moved his way up over the years, but he stayed humble. In fact, he attributes his success to failure.
If you’d like to read more about Michael Jordan’s life, Michael Jordan: The Life is one of the most popular books out there. It’s written by basketball journalist Roland Lazenby. He interviewed friends, coaches, family, and Michael Jordan himself in writing the book.
An Emmy Award Winning Comedian
Tiffany Haddish, the hilariously gifted comedian and actress, has overcome great obstacles on her rise to success. You may know her from Girls Trip or perhaps you’ve seen one of her uproarious stand up shows.
She Was Living In A Car
This Emmy Award Winner and published author spent years in foster care, separated from her siblings. She experienced assault, homelessness, and divorce. Even as she performed her stand up she lived in her car.
Despite all this she has risen to the top and is giving back. Remembering how she felt how she felt having to move through the system with a trash bag full of her belongings, she’s given hundreds of suitcases to kids in foster care.
The Most Famous Mom On Facebook
Kristina Kuzmic is arguably the most famous, inspiring, and funny mom on Facebook. Her videos have more than 1 billion views. Kristina is a on a mission to get us to be honest with each other and to encourage us along the way.
Her Home Was Bombed
Kristina’s overcome great obstacles and multiple failures which she attributes to helping shape her path to success today. Kristina immigrated from Croatia as kid during the war. She experienced the devastation of bombings and loss. As a young mom she experienced divorce, poverty, and depression.
In 2011 Kristina won “Oprah’s Search for the Next TV Star,” and was on her way to having a successful cooking show when it fell apart. Kristina was disappointed but brushed herself off and found a new way to authentically connect with and inspire others that launched her to where she is today.
If you’d like to read more about Kristina’s hard won wisdom for success, check out Hold On, But Don’t Hold Still. You’ll find her message of resilience and self-acceptance inspiring, motivating, and full of great laughs, too!
True Motivational Stories From People Like You And Me
Some of the most powerful stories of overcoming come from people who aren’t household names. Their battles and successes are just as inspiring and motivational if not more.
She Went From Teenage Homelessness to MD
Sheryl Recinos struggled through her dysfunctional upbringing in foster care, detention, and eventually to the streets of Hollywood. She even made an appearance on the Jerry Springer show, sharing her experiences as a homeless teen.
Today Dr Sheryl is a mom, writer, physician, and activist. She advocates for youth in need through her writings and philanthropy.
Dr Sheryl shares her coming of age story in her honest and compelling book, Hindsight.
But we’d be remiss if we didn’t also mention her other awesome Resilience Group series for kids 10 and up on dealing with childhood trauma.
Her Books For Kids Facing Trauma
She Escaped Human Trafficking and Got A PhD
Katarina Rosenblatt was a lonely, abused, and neglected as a young girl. At 13 she was targeted by a child trafficking ring. She escaped trafficking, her attempted murder, and poverty.
Dr Kat went on to get a law degree and PhD. As an advocate and national speaker, she became the First and Only known US Survivor of Sex Trafficking to be included in the National Center for Civil and Human Rights Museum in Atlanta, GA.
Dr Kat tells her story of faith and escape in her own words in her book, Stolen: The True Story Of A Sex Trafficking Survivor.
He Went From Foster Care to Football Star
Michael Oher grew up as one of 13 children, in a rough neighborhood in Tennessee. As a teenager, he bounced around between foster care and life on the streets. Through the support of an adoptive family, Ohr broke out of the cycle of poverty, addiction, and hopelessness that trapped his family.
Michael’s story is the basis for the 2000 movie staring Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side. But he tells his story in his own words in I Beat the Odds: From Homelessness, to The Blind Side, and Beyond.
Finding this encouraging? Pin it!
More Foster Youth Success Stories
You may have noticed more than one of our inspiring stories has a history in foster care. We like to share those stories in particular since helping foster youth succeed is our mission.
There are so many amazing stories of overcoming from youth who came from foster care. We just had to share a few more that came to our attention.
Andrew Bridge made himself into a gateway of hope for foster children. A former foster youth himself, Andrew spent 11 years in the foster system, While in foster care, he was confined to the MacLaren Children’s Center in Los Angeles County, a facility criticized for its harsh treatment of children and ultimately closed by order of the court.
Harvard Law School, and even cancer could not keep this man from becoming everything he was created to be. Andrew Bridge is a New York Times Bestselling author, lawyer, and executive director of the California-based Alliance for Children’s Rights. His book is called “Hope’s Boy.“
In 2013, she won the Miss California pageant. She is known for her tireless work to advocate on behalf of abused children and foster care reform. But life wasn’t always a fairy tale for Christina Meredith.
Abuse, foster care, and homelessness are painful parts of her past. Despite enduring the worst this world has to offer, her faith in Christ has brought her into honorable service in the Lord’s army. And she also serves in the U.S. Army.
She founded the Christina Meredith Foundation to advocate for foster care reform and meet the needs of at-risk children.
In Christina’s book, CinderGirl, she tells her heart wrenching story of overcoming. Her vulnerability, invites you into her experience from sorrow to joy.
Destined For More
Destini’s case file began when she was only seven months old. She experienced child abuse, kinship care, foster care and struggled through childhood. Destini was adopted at 17.
Destini McAlister is now an author, wife, and homeschooling mother of 3. In her memoir, Set Free, Destini shares her story of hope for trauma survivors… hope that through consistent love, support, and faith in Christ, we all can be set free
What Makes A Success Story
While these inspirational stories of success are exceptional, it’s important to remember that success is subjective. Just because someone hasn’t written a book (or been written about) doesn’t mean they aren’t a success.
Here at Finally Family Homes we don’t measure success by degrees, titles, fortune, or fame. We believe success in life starts with meeting your goals, whatever they may be. Maybe you want to write poetry, become an accountant, or learn how to garden. Each of these goals has their barriers and challenges to overcome. It’s in pushing past barriers, persevering, and growing personally and in helping others that you will achieve true success.
Celebrate the small victories. Own your failures. Keep going. It’s when you don’t give up that you win.
Want to be a part of our story of hope and success?
Join our newsletter & get hope filled phone wallpapers, coloring pages, and encouragement in your inbox as we share about serving aging out foster youth.