Tag Archives: determination

The Classic Pamela Positive: “I Got My Start by Giving Myself a Start.” – Madam C.J. Walker

 

In the 1900s, Madam C.J. Walker made her mark for black women (and all women) by becoming the first African-American self-made millionaire in America.  She had a problem herself; in setting out to solve it, she helped others.

Madam Walker was losing some of her hair. So she created a hair product company that addressed this need, while helping women feel stronger, prouder, more beautiful. She was a millionaire within fifteen years.

 

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Yet it wasn’t just enhancing women’s beauty and self-esteem that made her unique. She employed thousands of women; she shone with brilliance by being a great CEO. And she left us with some inspiring mottos by which she lived her life.

Two of my favorites are:

 

“I got my start by giving myself a start.”

―Madam C.J. Walker

 

Photography of a Man And Woman Laughing

“I had to make my own living and my own opportunity. But I made it! Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them.”

―Madam C.J. Walker

 

Go “start” whatever you would love to do. It can be small, it can be on the side, it can be modest. But begin today. You will know yourself more, giving of your “only-you” talents.  You will also be providing opportunities and inspiration for others.

 


In honor of Black History month, we honor Madam C.J. Walker. She was the first self-made American millionaire who was African-American or female. Her own hair loss inspired her to experiment with home remedies, and then sell them throughout the country. She began by selling Madam Walker’s Wonderful Hair Grower, a healing conditioner for scalps. She traveled door-to-door throughout the South and Southeast to sell her products. Her corporation employed as many as 3,000 people at one point. Madam Walker also founded Lelia College to train “hair culturists,” assisting other black women to start their own businesses. She was a Civil Rights activist and philanthropist.

Madam Walker had a daughter, A’Lelia Walker. She became president of her mother’s company in 1919 and remained in that position until her death in August 1931.

Bio Source: Wikipedia  Fig¹. Photo by Wikimedia Commons  Fig². Photo by Min An on Pexels

The Classic Pamela Positive: Christopher Reeve’s Progression of Dreams

 

“At first dreams seem impossible, then improbable, then inevitable.”

— Christopher Reeve

 

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What a lovely quote…and a good reminder for us all…

 


Christopher Reeve (1952-2004) was an American actor and activist.  As an actor, he is best known for his portrayal of Superman, for which he won a BAFTA award. When Reev was nine, he discovered his love for acting in a school play called The Yeomen of the Guard. He excelled in high school and he went on to Cornell University to get his degree as he promised his mother to do before he pursued his acting career. While at Cornell, he met an agent who would help him find opportunities to act during his summers. Instead of finishing his senior year at Cornell, he applied and got accepted to the Advanced Program at Julliard for acting, which would replace his senior year of college. Through the help of his agent, he was able to secure his role as Superman despite only having done one minor role in Hollywood before. He received very positive reviews for his role in the movie and he began to star in a number of films and plays afterward. Reeve was married to Dana Morosini and had three children, two from a previous relationship.

In 1995, Reeve was injured in a horse-riding accident which shattered vertebrae in his spine and left him a quadriplegic. He became an influential activist for individuals with spinal injuries, bringing attention to the cause through speaking and media, and founding the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation.  Reeve inspired many with his personal story of persevering through his physical challenges. He made his directorial debut after his injury, and also performed in small acting roles, including on the Superman-based TV show, Smallville. He authored two autobiographical books after his injury, Still Me and Nothing Is Impossible.

Bio Source: Wikipedia  Fig¹. Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

The Classic Pamela Positive: I Love What Howard Zinn Writes: Hope Is Not Certainty… but Being Open to Possibilities…

 

“…I intend to be the voice of reasonable optimism, to figure out a passage through this tough time. To have hope, one does not need certainty, only possibility.”

-Howard Zinn

 

I love how Howard Zinn focuses on maintaining the human spirit. Throughout his life dedication to combatting injustice, striving to help those marginalized, and being involved in a brutal World War, Howard held his views of hope.

 

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Let’s keep our minds open to the great possibilities which abound before us. There is always a way, a pathway, a new opportunity, a new possibility. A New Hope!

 


Howard Zinn (1922-2010) was a historian, author, and activist. He was a pilot in WWII, an experience which shaped his outspoken opposition of war. He was a professor of political science for many years at Boston University as well as Spelman College. He is best known for his book, A People’s History of the United States, presenting history from the point of view of the marginalized. Zinn married Roslyn Shechter in 1944. They had a daughter, Myla, and a son, Jeff.

Bio Source: Wikipedia


Fig¹.  Photo from Wikimedia Commons

The Classic Pamela Positive: “Make the Most of the Abilities We Have” – Jim Abbott

 

“Never allow the circumstances of your life to become an excuse. People will allow you to do it. But I believe we have a personal obligation to make the most of the abilities we have.”

– Jim Abbott

 

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A wonderful model for us. Don’t be held back by anything!

So what if you don’t have a hand… you can be a pitcher. Jim Abbott did.

 

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What’s holding you back today?

Don’t let it. Don’t let it. Get out there, get over it, and achieve your best you.

Yes, You Can Do It!

Pamela


Jim Abbott is a former Major League Baseball pitcher, who played despite having been born without a right hand. He played for teams including the California Angels, New York Yankees, and Chicago White Sox. In 1993, Abbott threw a no-hitter against the Cleveland Indians, and in 1988 pitched the final game to win the United States an unofficial gold medal in the Summer Olympics. Throughout his career, teams tried to exploit the fact that Abbott played with one hand, but their tactics were never effective.

Today, Abbott works as a motivational speaker, living in California with his wife, two children, and their dog. His parents still live in Michigan, where he grew up. Abbott and his family take the summer off each year to stay at the lake and visit with family and friends.

Bio Source: Wikipedia  Fig¹.Photo by Kyle Glenn on Unsplash  Fig².Photo from Wikimedia

The Classic Pamela Positive: “I Would Make Something Happen” – Louis L’Amour

 

One of our prolific American writers from the Midwest, Louis L’Amour wrote about the rugged wilderness of the west in the 1900s. He spoke of our pioneering spirit, the need to create our future, and the adventure of it all. And so he has good advice for any entrepreneur:

 

“I would not sit waiting for some vague tomorrow, nor for something to happen. One could wait a lifetime, and find nothing at the end of the waiting. I would begin here, I would make something happen.”

-Louis L’Amour

 

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Louis L’Amour was an American author. He is best known for his Western fiction novels, though he also wrote historical fiction, science fiction, nonfiction, poetry and short-story collections.  He was born Louis Dearborn LaMoore on March 22, 1908, the last of seven children.  He grew up in Jamestown, North Dakota, a medium-sized farming community.  As he grew older, he traveled throughout the United States and abroad, in various positions including as a mine assessment worker, a professional boxer and a merchant seaman.

In the 1930s, Louis and his family settled in Oklahoma, and Louis turned his focus to writing.  He began to have success with short stories in the late ‘30s and ‘40s, beginning to sell novels in the 1950s.  Louis also served in the United States Army during World War II. Louis ultimately wrote 89 novels and more than 250 short stories.

Bio Source: Wikipedia


Fig¹.  Photo by Jeffrey Czum on Unsplash

The Classic Pamela Positive: “You Have to Find Out: How Do I Fit In Here?” – Heidi Klum

 

“You have to make things happen. There are bumps in the road: my agent, my weight, an industry looking for cool girls more than a commercial look. These are hurdles, and you have to find your way. You have to find out: How do I fit in here?”

― Heidi Klum

 

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This might look daunting, but there is a way up. This person found a way!

No matter what the challenge is you are facing, you will find a way to do so. We can learn, challenge ourselves, and believe.

Up You Go!

Pamela

 


Heidi Klum, born in 1973 in Germany, is a supermodel, actress, businesswoman, and television producer. She produces and hosts the award-winning reality television show Project Runway and has appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated, Vogue, Elle, and Marie Claire. She became widely known after appearing as a Victoria’s Secret Angel because she was the first German model to become a Victoria Secret Angel. Heidi has also worked in philanthropy, specifically with Walk For Kids in 2011 and the American Red Cross. She has been nominated for six Emmy Awards, worked with H&M, and became the official ambassador for Barbie in 2009. Heidi is mother to four children.

Bio Source: Wikipedia


Fig¹.  Photo by Hu Chen on Unsplash

The Classic Pamela Positive: “Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do.” – Dr. Robert Schuller

 

 

“Tough times never last, but tough people do.”

— Dr. Robert Schuller

 

 

And the point here is not be tough… but to persevere. To last through the valley. To endure, cultivate patience, and live humility. With that, we develop our character which allows us to serve our world and neighbors more effectively.

 

 

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So we encourage you to last. Sometimes the road might seem long, but look at that beautiful, eternal sunshine. Keep reaching for it.

 

Sunshine Ahead,

Pamela

 

 


Dr. Robert Schuller was a minister and founder of the Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California. He was born in Alton, Iowa and he was the youngest of five children. His grandparents were both Dutch immigrants, and he was part of a tight-knit Dutch community. After he graduated high school, Dr. Schuller attended Hope College and then received his Master of Divinity degree from Western Theological Seminary. In 1950, he married Arvella De Haan, who would help shape the music of Crystal Cathedral. Together they had five children.

He wrote over thirty books and six of those books became New York Times bestsellers. He was best known for starting the popular TV program Hour of Power; as a result he became a popular Televangelist. After retiring as the principle pastor of the Crystal Cathedral, he became the chairman of the church’s board of directors.

BioSource: Wikipedia


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Fig¹. Jasper Boer on Unsplash