: Oprah was fired from one of her early anchor gigs, after being labelled “unfit for TV.”

: Tim Ferriss had twenty-six publishing rejections for The 4-Hour Workweek—which spent months on The New York Times Bestseller list.

: Twilight author Stephenie Meyer had nine rejections from literary agents, and then…a $750,000 three-book deal.

: Lady Gaga was dropped by Island Def Jam Records after only three months.

: Project Runway winner Christian Siriano was rejected by the Fashion Institute of Technology. After winning Project Runway, his fashion line brought in $1.2 million in the first two years.

: Abraham Lincoln had less than five years of formal education.

: Marilyn Monroe was booted from 20th Century-Fox, after producers declared her “unattractive.”

: Beethoven was almost completely deaf when he composed “The Ode To Joy.” He removed the legs from his piano and placed it on the floor, letting the vibrations resonate through his body.

: Emily Dickinson had just a handful of poems published during her lifetime—out of over 1,800 completed works.

: Louisa May Alcott was encouraged by her family to find work as a household servant. She wrote Little Women instead.

: Verdi was rejected from a prestigious music conservatory in Milan because he “wasn’t talented enough.” He wrote twenty-eight operas, including La Traviata, Aida, and Othello.

: Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team.

Keep going.
Keep going.
Keep going.

Danielle LaPorte is the outspoken creator of The Desire Map, author of The Fire Starter Sessions (Random House/Crown), co-creator of Your Big Beautiful Book Plan and soon-to-be publisher of Danielle Magazine, launching this September. An inspirational speaker, former think tank exec and business strategist, she writes weekly at DanielleLaPorte.com, where over a million visitors have gone for her straight-up advice — a site that’s been deemed “the best place on-line for kick-ass spirituality”, and was named one of the “Top 100 Websites for Women” by Forbes.

You can also find her on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter @daniellelaporte.

*Featured image by quicheisinsane.