What’s the difference between someone who believes they are a victim of their circumstances, and another who overcomes impossible odds?
The victim mentality permeates our culture, but some turn out to be unstoppable no matter what. Were they just born different. Or, can their relentless nature be learned and nurtured?
Children with one or both parents incarcerated are 300 to 400 percent more likely to end up behind bars than other children. So many who are born into poverty receive mediocre to poor education, remaining mired in the cycle of poverty when they reach adulthood and start their own families.
Who is responsible for breaking these negative cycles — government, or the individual?
In his book "The Fifteen Percent: Overcoming Hardships and Achieving Lasting Success," entrepreneur Terry Giles examines the exceptions to the rule, the ones who overcome long odds and succeed. He chooses examples of high achievers who started out life deeply disadvantaged, yet fought through.
His examples span from the Catholic Church’s sex abuse scandal to a young lawyer named Brad Bannon who successfully defended the Duke Lacrosse team against the sensational, and as it turned out utterly false, rape accusation in 2002.
While working with victims of the church sex abuse scandal, Giles noticed a fact that surprised him. The abuse shattered many of the victims, but a small number, about 15 percent, went on to achieve great things despite the terrible crimes done to them.
He delves into specific examples, like the Wall Street executives who began life with nothing, and discovers what drives them forward through one obstacle after another.
He identifies a low fear factor as one trait. This is the difference between someone who cashed out from a successful investment and retires comfortably, and one who risks that profit on a new investment to build something even bigger. The first may be prudent, but the second is fearless.
That internal drive to push onward to the next great challenge is something that deeply resonates with both Giles himself, and the author of the "Fifteen Percent’s" foreword, neurosurgeon and HUD Secretary Dr. Ben Carson.
As they detail, both grew up below the mean, in hardscrabble circumstances.
Both grew up poor and essentially fatherless.
Carson was dead last in class during his early education.
Giles was a difficult child by any measure.
Neither were marked for success or had the connections or any obvious path to success.
Yet both personally felt the unrelenting internal drive to not just pursue a career in law or medicine, but to be the best of the best. Today Carson is a national figure, a former presidential candidate, and one of the world’s most renowned physicians.
Giles has built, bought and sold dozens of businesses and is one of the most successful criminal defense attorneys in the country.
They overcame. Giles shows how they did it.
"The Fifteen Percent" is meant to inspire personal accountability and proof that anyone can be anything and can do more than simply survive horrifying circumstances. It does an outstanding job of proving that the success of the very highest achievers in our society comes from something within them. If the desire to overcome any obstacle is strong enough, a person will not only overcome it, but do something truly extraordinary.
Giles also teaches that the drive to succeed can be learned, by anyone.
"The Fifteen Percent: Overcoming Hardships and Achieving Lasting Success" is not for whiners or perpetual victims. Don’t read this book if you don’t want to succeed at whatever you’re doing. Don’t read this book if you don’t want to overcome your disadvantages or if you want to blame others for your failures.
But if you want to become unstoppable, if you want to see a path to a better life, this book offers life lessons anyone can apply.
The possibility of a better life is real and it’s there.
Giles proves it in "The Fifteen Percent."
Steve Gruber is a conservative talk show host with 25 affiliates in Michigan. "The Steve Gruber Show" launched in 2012 with just four affiliates and has grown into the most powerful name in talk radio across Michigan. Steve has been named “Best Morning Personality” by the Michigan Association of Broadcasters five years in a row. His conservative, common-sense philosophy was developed during his time growing up in rural Michigan. Steve’s early career found him in several newsrooms including WILX, Lansing where he honed his investigative journalism and interviewing skills. He became the main news anchor of the station and before long was offered a job with NBC in Columbus, Ohio. While working for NBC, he covered the incredible launch of John Glenn, age 77, into space at Cape Canaveral, White Supremacists in Ohio, and the deadly game of selling prescription medication online. Steve was nominated for an Emmy in 2000. To read more of this reports — Click Here Now.
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