At 62, Oprah Winfrey, who just celebrated her birthday last week, is among the most successful entrepreneurs of all time with a net worth of $3 billion. Life magazine has named Oprah the most influential woman of her generation. Business Week has named her the greatest African-American philanthropist in American history.
Oprah was born in poverty to an unmarried teen mother. She was sexually abused throughout her childhood and became a troubled, rebellious adolescent. She ran away from home at age 13.
Despite her difficult upbringing, Oprah did not allow her past to determine her future. She demonstrated that regardless of the obstacles we face, we can achieve anything through passion, determination, and hard work. Here are 24 of her greatest quotes on life and success to inspire and empower you.
"Everybody has a calling. And your real job in life is to figure out as soon as possible what that is, who you were meant to be, and to begin to honor that in the best way possible for yourself."
"The key to realizing a dream is to focus not on success but on significance – and then even the small steps and little victories along your path will take on greater meaning."
“I feel that luck is preparation meeting opportunity.”
"Create the highest, grandest vision possible for your life, because you become what you believe."
"You have to know what sparks the light in you so that you, in your own way, can illuminate the world."
“My philosophy is that not only are you responsible for your life but doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.”
"You know you are on the road to success if you would do your job and not be paid for it."
"The reason I've been able to be so financially successful is my focus has never, ever for one minute been money."
“The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.”
“Often we don’t even realize who we’re meant to be because we’re so busy trying to live out someone else’s ideas. But other people and their opinions hold no power in defining our destiny.”
“The choice to be excellent begins with aligning your thoughts and words with the intention to require more from yourself.”
"Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher."
“Understand that the right to choose your own path is a sacred privilege. Use it. Dwell in possibility.”
"Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you."
"With every experience, you alone are painting your own canvas, thought by thought, choice by choice."
“I believe that one of life’s greatest risks is never daring to risk.”
“What material success does is provide you with the ability to concentrate on other things that really matter. And that is being able to make a difference, not only in your own life but in other people's lives.”
“I know for sure that what we dwell on is who we become.”
“I had no idea that being your authentic self could make me as rich as I’ve become. If I had, I’d have done it a lot earlier.”
"Every time you state what you want or believe, you're the first to hear it. It's a message to both you and others about what you think is possible. Don't put a ceiling on yourself."
“Do the one thing you think you cannot do. Fail at it. Try again. Do better the second time. The only people who never tumble are those who never mount the high wire. This is your moment. Own it.”
"Turn your wounds into wisdom."
“What I know is, is that if you do work that you love, and the work fulfills you, the rest will come.”
"The big secret in life is that there is no big secret. Whatever your goal, you can get there if you're willing to work."
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This article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Minor edits have been done by the Entrepreneur.com.ph editors.