Sometimes life gets tough and we feel like we must put aside our dreams to make things work. Many people have struggled throughout life and still found ways to succeed. You should use their stories as inspiration to lead you to achieve all your own hopes and dreams. Sure, everyone has a different situation in life. It’s what makes us unique and special, but also what fuels us to create whatever world we want to live in. It also ensures that the person who is in control of your dreams is you, so make sure you are doing everything you can to achieve them.
The story behind the man:
John Paul DeJoria American Entrepreneur (co-founder of Paul Mitchell & Patron Tequila)
John Paul DeJoria was born April 13th, 1944, in Echo Park, Los Angeles, CA. Both of his parents were immigrants from Europe that divorced when he was two years old. At the young age of nine years old, John would join his brother selling holiday cards and newspapers to support their family. When their single mother was unable to support both children, they were sent to a foster home in East LA. John would later join a street gang and be told by his high school math teacher that he would never succeed in life. Against this negativity, he would go on to graduate high school.
When he was 22 years old, John’s ex-wife would leave him and their two-year-old son. With her, she took their rent money and their only car. John and his son would be forced onto the street. John would have to borrow a car until, eventually, a friend would invite both him and his son to stay in his home until John got back on his feet.
Eventually, John got back on his feet and began doing well again. He would have a nice car, house, and a wife. DeJoria would get some investment backers for a new hair systems company in 1980 amid a time of high inflation and unemployment. He needed $500,000 to get his company, Paul Mitchell, going. His investors backed out last minute. To make things worse, John left his wife, nice house, and car due to troubles with their marriage. Once again, John would find himself on the streets.
Committed to his business, he started by getting a loan of $700 and selling his product door-to-door. This would not be his first time selling door-to-door. When John was younger, he sold encyclopedias door-to-door, which gave him a taste of the rejection he needed to do well selling Paul Mitchell products. Eventually, he and Mitchell would get their products into hair salons. This led to their success and allowed them to finally pay their bills. John did not stop there, though.
In 1989, John and partner Martin Crowley would start Patron Tequila. After having some bad tequila, John asked Martin to bring back some good tequila from his business trip to Mexico. Martin came back to tell John that he found someone who gave him a batch of premium tequila with the ability to make an even smoother batch.
John has been the founding member and owns many companies. His companies produce over a billion dollars in revenue every year. Though he is wildly successful with a net worth of $3.4 billion dollars, John Paul DeJoria doesn’t measure his success in dollars – his belief is that money isn’t everything. Instead, he believes in giving back. He once said, “I have been so down and out in my life. It makes me feel really good to be financially blessed and give back. I get great joy and a great high out of it. It’s my way of paying rent on this planet to share with others less fortunate.” He is a true rag to riches story. If you would like to learn more about John, check out his book “My Friends Call Me J.P.”.