What’s one thing you’re most proud of?

October 15th, 2012 - 407 Comments

Every month, I co-host an entrepreneur dinner in NYC with Michael Fishman, and when we go around the table introducing each other, Michael and I always ask people to brag about themselves.

It’s funny — people LOVE bragging about themselves, but it’s not socially acceptable. So when you make it socially acceptable, you discover the most amazing things about people.

So today, I want to know: What’s one thing you’re incredibly proud of? It could be paying off your debt, or working out, or even getting over a social phobia to talk to someone at a bar.

Share it below in the comments. Don’t be afraid to brag!

UPDATE: Comments are closed, but check out the 400+ amazing things IWT readers like you are doing!

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407 Comments

 

Comments

  1. I’ve sold more than 5,000 copies of my self-published e-books, 3,000 of which are of “The Marinara Murders,” a novel that I really really like. It’s the closest any of my books has ever come to turning out how I envisioned it: a simple mystery with some family comedy.

    http://amzn.to/viLEgF

    A few more of these and maybe I can start to thinking about living the passive income dream! :)

  2. I got over my fear of talking to women and actually met my girlfriend on my first try.

    I trained for my blackbelt in TaeKwonDo, while passing difficult exams in college.

  3. I lost 57 pounds in 6 months with basic diet and exercise. For my diet, which I intend to sustain for life, I didn’t do anything crazy, and I didn’t obsessively count calories. I’m just basically aware of what I eat now, and I don’t drink soda, eat at night, or snack between meals (except on cheat day, when I go completely bonkers). For exercise, I ran on a treadmill for 35 minutes 3 times per week. After I reached my goal weight, I was less disciplined, but I’m still running, and I plan to run a 1/2 marathon at a 10-minute mile pace next Sunday.

    • Sounds like the diet from “The 4 Hour Body”. I’ve been doing the same thing, and its been incredibly effective.

  4. I’m most proud of being “just” 20 years old and knowing what I want out of life,
    unlike my 21 yr + friends who are mostly still at uni studying something random with the idea of getting “a job” once they leave.

    I have eschewed a 3-5 year stint at university in order to spend a year working and studying on my own terms to work out what I actually wanted to do. Since Aug 2011, I’ve learnt about Financial Independence, being self-employed, and location independence – and have found a path that I love, that will take me there: diet & exercise coaching/personal training.
    Even though externally I may appear to be “behind” my friends & others my age on the “ladder of success”, (I’m still working a hospitality job while I grow my side income to become my main income) I consider myself to be waay ahead on the long-term scale:

    I know what I want out of life and am working towards it – and that for me, at 20 years old, is something I am incredibly proud of.

    • Good for you, Annika! You’re not alone. My 18 year old daughter, like you, is bucking the typical path. More than laughing all the way to the bank, it’s about being in control of your destiny!

    • Annika – youth and wisdom – inspiring. You are so right…I hope your friends read the post!

  5. I apologize in advance for the long story. But I don’t get to tell this often, and I’m extremely proud of it.

    After the Fall 1999 semester, at the age of 20, I dropped out of college because I thought I wanted to be a rock star. I was halfway through my junior year as an electrical engineering major (I really just stayed home from class and drank all the time instead of doing any work); I had around a 2.3 GPA. After about five years, I decided I was going to move to Austin, TX to start my band. I had also decided that I would go back to school to get a Ph.D. in Physics “on the side.”

    When I called the University of Texas to inquire about transferring, the admissions officer I spoke with told me to not even bother applying — the previous year, the GPA cutoff for transfer applicants was 3.6, and it would take me too long to get my average that high (they didn’t accept transfer students in their senior year). Furthermore, I had been out of school for five years, and she said the admissions board would view me as unlikely to succeed after such a long layoff, which would seriously damage my chances. I hung up the phone and immediately decided that I was going to the University of Texas.

    About a month before I moved to Austin, I decided to visit my old high school’s college counselor and ask her advice on my plan — I had a letter of recommendation from every job I had ever worked at, and I intended to bring it the UT Admissions Department to show them I work hard, and I simply wasn’t mature enough to handle college my first time around. As it happens, she knew the UT Director of Admissions (they were old friends) and she got me a one-on-one meeting with him! I stated my case and he told me that, if I did well in certain classes at Austin Community College, he would grant me admission despite my GPA. A year and a half later, I had earned my way into the UT Physics Department, and I loved physics so much that music went completely to the wayside.

    Even though I hadn’t taken a physics class in 10 years, I worked my butt off at UT and won multiple performance-based scholarships from the department (3), a research fellowship, an undergraduate research award, and when I graduated in 2008 I was chosen as a Dean’s Honored Graduate of the College of Science, an honor reserved for around 1% of the UT College of Science’s graduates (that year, there were 18 of us out of just under 1,800 graduates). Out of the Dean’s Honored Graduates, I was selected to give the commencement speech for the College of Science — it was truly an honor to speak to over 3,000 people that day and share what I learned from my experience. It is also, to this day, the proudest moment of my life.

    I am now in my fifth year of grad school, working toward my Ph.D. So far in grad school, I scored highest among my class on the 9-hour written qualifying exam (for Ph.D. candidacy). I also earned a research presentation award, a teaching award, and a NASA GSRP Fellowship, which also allowed me to work at a NASA center two summers ago (it was awesome!).

  6. That I have earned people’s respect with my work ethic in sport and business, and folks look up to me for inspiration.
    That I never have to look behind my shoulder due to my honesty.
    That I can be in the moment enough regularly to stop and smell the roses, enjoy a cool breeze, and just watch the clouds.

  7. I’m proud that I have been traveling the world for the past 10 years working interesting jobs and not waitress jobs, learning five languages on the way, and that I haven’t had a boss in 3 years while still living an awesome life.

  8. I am proud of a couple of things that were really hard for me – passing my musical instrument exams with distinctions took a lot of hard work and practice for me. Getting my Masters degree was really challenging and I’m proud of that. Mainly, however, I am proud of sticking with unbelievably painful therapy until I got my head sorted and figured out what was really going on for me. I’m now a much more balanced person who has recovered from post-traumatic stress disorder and has the potential to live life again. I can reflect on my own motivations and thought processes, and get over patterns that are not helping me (like abdicating financial responsibility to my husband).

  9. I am most proud that I left a PhD program at Stanford right after I got the MA and I started to decide what life would look like on my own terms.

    I am extremely type A and have always followed the rules of what I am supposed to do with my life. I was miserable in school, and it was taking a huge toll on me, but quitting was incredibly hard because it meant giving up a dream that I’d had since I was 12 or 13.

    Since leaving school, I have started to do Bikram yoga and lost 30 pounds, I have learned new skills that I was always interested in (cooking, some Python). I leave a job that I love at 5 PM on Friday and don’t think about it again until 9 AM on Monday. I gave myself a year to focus on myself and not think long-term about my life’s calling, and it has already been the best thing I’ve ever done, and I’m not even 4 months into the year. :)

    • Wow,
      I love hearing about others finding their path and walking it with confidence. This year has been one of many life altering changes for me and I am still not sure what I am supposed to be doing. If anything I am proud of my two loving children and that I hang on to hope and gratitude most of the time. :)

      Nicole

  10. I’m proudest of 2 things:
    1) I went through the public school system (kind of quickly–college degree and in Fortune 500 company by 19), but was burned out on learning. After a few years, my natural curiosity returned. I went on to homeschool my girls, using the opposite techniques of everything I learned from my bad experiences. Both my girls went on to great colleges, won multiple scholarships and awards, and all of us continue learning (formally or otherwise) to this day. My most recent endeavors have been learning Zulu, theoretical physics, studying Nordic sagas, mastering French pastry, and training previously unhandled adult horses. Tomorrow? Anything goes!
    2) I was in a meeting with a very well known software billionaire years ago. He threw most executives out of the meeting because they were too “ignorant” to understand him (he must have been channeling Dr. Sheldon Cooper). I, a lowly tech writer, stayed, and we had a fascinating discussion of the interdependence of our software on his.

  11. New reader for this particular blog, but have followed similar for a while…

    I guess it would be leaving ym job to start my company with my best friend, and nearly two years in we’ve earned over £200,000. Not a bad start for a 22 year old…

  12. This summer I biked 7,000km from Istanbul to Portugal and then Morocco, for 5 months, all while paying off 5 figure debt back home. I’m now back and ready to reignite my photography business, and also start up my 2nd business venture, all with a resurgent credit score and clean slate on my financial life!
    See the blog for more info ;-)
    blog.nickypallas.com

    • That’s absolutely amazing!!! That sounds like something I’d love to do! Though my debt payoff, weightloss and photo business plans are a bit different…

  13. I reinvented myself.

    I was stuck in a dead end job, in a dead end field, with no way to move forward.

    So I sold everything I owned, moved to the east coast, and started all over again in an entry-level position in computer networking. Now, more than 10 years later, I’m paid very well to design computer networks.

  14. I changed my life in January of 2011 and began eating healthy and working out each week. I am learning to live a life of discipline, but more importantly, I have lost 75 pounds and feel more confident and powerful than ever. This change has allowed me to begin a journey towards lifestyle freedom. I have earned an extra $1500+ in the last 45 days and I am using that money to fund my business that will allow me to be a business owner, rather than a worker. I now know that I can do anything at all – the only battlefield is my mind!

  15. Interesting that so many people are commenting on this post anonymously

    • 1 out of 7 doesn’t seem like a large number of anonymous folk–unless you’re counting those using only their first names. I was raised not to brag–cultural thing among Scandinavians–at least females.

  16. In about 8 months of 48 hour/week professional training in China I got ready to participate in the wushu World championships in 2006 and won 2 silver medals with no previous Wushu experience whatsoever, beating people that have spent up to 15 years on their training at home.. Short after that, I went into the muay thai ring in thailand against a national champion and got my ass whooped. But I lasted 2 rounds instead of getting killed in the first one. I took several hits that had the equivalent power of a car crash and was still laughing in the first round.

    Using some of Ramit’s techniques in Earn1k, which funny enough a friend that didn’t get to use it, introduced me to, I booked 23 coaching clients within one post on a message board. And in 21 of these cases, we solved the problem or got several steps ahead.

    Using Mark Rippetoes Starting Strength, a gallon of milk and tons of burgersI put on 14kg of muscle mass (yeah, ok, with an added 8kg of fat mass, we checked) within 4 months. The usual accepted limit is 10kg in the first YEAR. Beat that. After that, I had some clients that wanted to do the same and everyone that did EXACTLY what I told them to do, succeeded in similar success.

    Was fun. There is probably more to brag about, but in the end, those are “Star hours” of my life.

  17. Leaving for University after the age of 17, and never moving back in with my parents except for three summers, is something I’m very proud of. In my last year of university, which most of my friends regarded as a victory lap, I took extra courses, worked, and applied for my Masters degree. When I ran out of money studying for my Master’s degree and burned out from 9 years of non-stop academic focus, I made a go of it in the big and worked as a security guard for a year, maintaining myself and then writing my thesis.

    Now I’ve got a good job (71k with in lieu pay at age 25), a finanical plan to have all debt except my remaining student debt paid off by January, and am researching businesses to start as my next grand adventure to make money for a new home and to help finance my Mom’s retirement.

    Oh, and during all that, I’ve dealth with personal anxiety disorders, two failed relationships, and my parent’s divorce. This summer I met the only woman whom I have ever completly trusted, and despite the short time we have known each other we are already planning our lives together. Also, she is really attractive, and out of my league by, well, leaguess.

    [sip of coffee, smug smile, back to work]

  18. I sent a check for $250.47 out today. When that gets to my credit card company it will be the first time in 28 years that I do not owe anyone a damn dime. I am 100% debt free including the mortgage.

  19. Last Saturday I leg-pressed four times my body weight. Weighing in at 175 pounds, that’s 700 pounds — MORE THAN 1/3 OF A TON! Picture here: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10101434094709509&set=a.10100123909595979.2750997.808289&type=1&theater

    I also earned over $1K on the side from various free resources, including Ramit’s, and used that money to buy Earn1K a few weeks ago.

  20. After getting burned by moving to CA (and then back to my hometown :/) and almost not having enough to finalize our adoption, we decided to buckle down. Five years later we have no consumer debt and will payoff the house in 7 months. During this time we have also traveled to Ireland and Australia & we are planning a trip to Italy next year. Oh and my husband stays at home with our son. :)

  21. Taught 59 year old man dance moves to help him get woman of his dream. Life’s mission complete.

  22. After dropping out of high school to drop into college at age 15, I started a business that I made profitable and recently sold before things went too far downhill due to the real estate industry. Along the way I provided jobs for 4-7 families at various times, and have become an efficiency expert, always finding ways to improve systems and processes, saving money and time.

  23. Over the past year I started performing and making money as a circus artist/dancer. I began making more money than ever via private lessons with people that I loved working with. Because of that I was able to buy the healthiest foods and eat the way I wanted. I moved to Montreal to pursue my circus dreams. I also found myself with an outrageously sexy and amazing woman! It’s been a good year so far =)

  24. My life is awesome! My 15 yr old son has overcome the socially debilitating diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome. My 17 yr old daughter is a volleyball star and has a full-ride scholarship to a D-I University. My wife has lost 64 lbs in the last six months. I have lost 116 lbs in the last six months. We are involved in an amazing church, and serve an amazing God!

  25. I can’t tell between these two:

    1. Was able to reject Princeton and Caltech because I got into Stanford (the best of both worlds, as Ramit would probably agree).

    2. Was able to ask my crush of some time out, and was summarily rejected without feeling bad about it.

    I mean, I’m certainly prouder of my rejections than my acceptances, generally. You have to be.

  26. I’m really proud of the impact I had on my first highschool student coaching client – I made the decision to specifically help students beyond the help they get from hs counselors to decide what to do post hs, even though I already have a full time job. The gratitude on her parent’s face and the confidence she clearly exudes now has been well worth the time I’ve spent – especially now, I feel inspired to keep moving forward with this passion of mine.

    • I’ve been thinking about doing something very similar to this for quite some time. I think that there are so many kids that would greatly benefit from a service like this, I know that I would have.

      I’d love to chat about how you got started and what your vision is. My chrisc@markandal.com.

      Chris

  27. I’m an entirely self taught photographer, I bought a DSLR a bit over 4 years ago and had no idea what I’m doing with it. Now, I’ve been taking a picture every day for the past 4 years and have no sign of stopping. I’ve got a pretty huge following online and have been interviewed on podcasts and chosen to represent my work in a couple of shows.

  28. Hi,
    At 27, I am on course to building a profitable business helping other businesses grow and expand in Africa. I have possibly spent about 3K since starting it up in 2010 and have built impressive connections globally.

  29. Bragging is AWESOME. Every single session with my clients starts with them bragging to me about their successes since we last spoke. I agree with you–it’s so important! So often we move from one goal to the next without taking the time to acknowledge what we have achieved!

    Today I want to brag about the fact that my life detox work has helped women to:
    1) Fulfill a lifelong dream of moving to Paris
    2) Heal an eating disorder that lasted 40 years
    3) Raise $5,000.00 for a game changing peace documentary about Hiroshima
    4) Save a marriage that was headed for divorce
    5) Quit a 9-5 and start a successful truth-aligned business

    :-)

    Love reading everyone else’s brags too! woohoo!

  30. I’m extremely proud that I’ve doubled my income within the past two years! I own a social media video production company, and I am so grateful that I’ve learned some key words, phrases and techniques on how to sell my product to clients which has increased all of my revenue streams and overall, makes me a happy woman.

  31. I wrote, produced, performed and sang on an album from 2006; it was a great experience – in a actual studio with professional gear and folks. No Garage Band crap! I’m writing my second album now. Can’t wait to head back to the studio. I love writing and recording music.

  32. I am proud that I had a business idea one month ago and launched it today on Shopify and have received great responses.

    • Great site Dominique. I moved over to Shopify a couple of months ago and couldn’t be happier :) It’s a great way to do business on the net. Andrew

    • Thanks Andrew! I am super excited about it. Shopify is great and really easy to manage on the back end. I am getting new companies signing up everyday so its definitely going well. If there is anything you use on shopify to amp up the marketing eCommerce that they have please let me know.

      Thanks again!

  33. Walking the dinner table talk: setting up an NGO in Cambodia and not letting studies or age or anything get in the way. Appearing on national radio to talk about my journey.

  34. Thought I didn’t have the experience to apply to business school and never thought I would get in. My app is in and I think I have a really good shot. Confidence is way up!

  35. I have been a therapist teaching relaxation and coping skills for over 16 years.
    One of my first recordings simply called “Relax” is now my best selling App, CD and MP3. I recorded it for Cancer patients at a local charity and I am proud to say that they still give everyone who attends the charity a copy of the CD.
    :-)

  36. Despite my humble beginnings–I grew up a ward of the state–I was able to go to college (As a first generation student) and get my Masters degree. I was able to fund this through scholarships, hard academic work, and part time jobs. I am 27 with no student loans! :)

    • You GO girl! I graduated in June and have no loans either. It’s a WONDERFUL feeling! I’m proud of you! Be thankful every day and never be afraid to share your awesomeness with the world! :)

  37. Over the last 5 years, I’ve grown from being a law student – utterly hating life – and parking cars for cash, to fully supporting a wife and two children, evolving from full-time in-house with steady salary increases, to enough client business to work entirely remotely, still supporting my family and increasing time available for myself and my family, with more interesting projects and ventures.

  38. Paid over 8 lacs INR college fee all by myself. I use to design and develop websites and web apps in my free time. Was offered a nice job in Switzerland by a client, but rejected it.

  39. After only 2.5 years of owning handguns, competed in my first pistol match at my local range.
    Beat a lot of excellent, experienced shooters to score 2nd place in the .45 caliber category, and in .22 LR pistol, scored just a point below an experienced competitor who has shot in the Empire State Games.

  40. I’m not a programmer, but I was able to get a team of 5 software developers to help me with my tech startup.

    Even even though everyone tells you “it’s impossible to start a tech company without programming skills” (I can’t tell you the number of people I’ve heard say “I am going to learn how to program so I can start a startup), I’ve been able to prove that that mantra is complete crap.

    This is a team of people I met only because I was trying to find software developers (i.e. it’s not my long term friends or relatives). And this isn’t me being desperate and paying some random freelancers $50,000 to make a prototype. My deal is a highly favorable and fair one to both myself and my team.

    If a guy like me was able to do this, so can you. I hope my story can motivate readers who want to do startups to stop making excuses–particularly about “I can’t program”–and to actually go out there and find a way to make it work. I’d be happy to share my story in more detail with anyone who is interested.

    • Good Morning,
      Wow! What an awesome story! My name is Madison and I am a College Senior this year. Like yourself, I am really captivated by this industry, but do not have specific programming skills. I am interested in learning more about startups in general and would love to hear more about your story and experience. I can’t seem to locate your email but would really appreciate the opportunity to speak with you. Please feel free to email me if you get a chance at madisonyli3@gmail.com

      Kind Regards,
      Madison

    • Hello R.C.,

      I am very interested in more details as I have my own idea needing to be developed and I don’t want to screw it up. I am contemplating the best approach to get it done and I would really love to hear more details about your story as I feel I could learn a few things. My Google+ page is my preferred method of communication with the public , so I’ve included a link. Thanks.

      Dianna

    • Hey RC,

      Same as Madison and Dianna – I’m curious to know how you pulled this off. jasonyshen@gmail.com. Would love to hear more!

      Jason

    • I was impressed by your startup story and would love to chat with you sometime soon.

    • I am interested

  41. I left my corporate job, and started my own company.

  42. I am in my ninth decade, preserving my health and million-dollar wealth. Each person MUST be a millionaire before retirement so he doesn’t need money from friends or government.
    Four things you need: health, money, love, and time to enjoy them. I have the first three, and I am using my remaining time to the max.

  43. I was able to pay back all of my student loans before turning 30 years of age.This happened a number of years ago; but, I use it to continue to inspire me with future goals.

  44. I’ve always had a fear of heights. I’ve been slowly conquering it, sitting next to the window on a plane, watching extreme videos on YouTube, and even going out in the sky boxes on the Sears Tower in Chicago. But I always said I’d never skydive – why jump out of a perfectly good airplane?

    Cut to this summer: at a personal development course, we had skydiving as an activity. I went from having panic attacks to taking one step at a time to getting on the plane and jumping. It showed me two things: we spend a lot of time thinking and not doing, and doing is a lot of fun!

  45. I bought a huge 3-family fixer upper on 6/30/09 and needed to repair it and have it rented for the critical 9/1 rental date. Over those 60 days I worked 600+ hours on the house while holding down my normal 9-5, and did the majority of work myself (ran all new electrical, put in two new kitchens, de-wallpapered and repainted the entire thing, but in a new bathroom, all new replacement windows, and a lot of other repairs). I also had to show the apartments, convince people that they would be done on time, and manage the project/deal with a finicky building department. Due to a diet of peanut butter sandwiches, 5 hour energy drinks, advil, and frequent 16-17 hour days, I lost 25 pounds. Now this property generates $45k a year and I learned some critical lessons that will be applied to the next one.

    • Hey Jim. How did you get it to make $45k per year? Specifically:

      1. How did you find a place that produces that much rent?

      2. How did you find tenants that actually pay? I know to do the normal stuff (employment, criminal check, etc.), but still they stop paying after awhile. What do you do that makes it work?

  46. Completing two of the items on my Bucket List. Skydiving at age 42. Swimming with sharks at 45. Both of these will soon be eclipsed when I pay off my mortgage by the end of 2012.

  47. I began my healthy lifestyle change last Nov/Dec and I’ve kept it up since… I’ve lost about 30 lbs (about halfway to my goal weight), and I decided the other day that I want to run a 5K. So, when I went to the gym that night, I decided to see just how far I could run, just to see how much training I would need to do a 5K, and I actually ran the entire thing on a treadmill that night. I was shocked and so proud! :-)

  48. Started a new side business about a year and a half ago.

    There are three partners. We are profitable and have about $100k in the bank.

    Paid off $6066.69 of a student loan that was locked in at 8.5% interest.

    Also started automating savings through ING and got a $10k raise at my regular job.

  49. The thing I am proud of most in my life is that I follow though with things. My friends have told me this too. When I said I wanted to run a marathon, I did it. When I said I wanted to start my own company, I did it (even though it was not successful) Whatever the challenge is, I go at it 100% and don’t look back.

  50. I am a first generation college graduate! I was able to earn my Bachelor’s and Master’s degree while working full time.

  51. I just spent the entire weekend working to get the marketing plan and website of a startup I’ve been working ready for presentation at the Dublin Web Summit. Now we just have to wait and see….

    http://www.storyflow.net

  52. After my Mom got diagnosed with Type II diabetes, I helped her make changes to her diet that brought her blood sugar from a 12 to a 6 (anything above a 7 I hear is unhealthy) and her blood pressure from 180/95 to 140/60 in 4 weeks.

    We lost my grandmother, her mother, to diabetes 12 years ago. It won’t happen to her.

  53. Last year, after reading this blog (and Ramit’s book), I made it a goal to earn extra income using my producing/marketing expertise. This weekend, Oct. 18-21, I will see the hard work from my new side job culminate at the 10th annual Tallgrass Film Festival, one of the largest indie film fests in the midwest. We will show over 120 films and host over 30 visiting filmmakers. I am now the marketing director of TFF, and it has been one of the most exciting experiences of my life.

  54. How do I choose just one? At the age of 52, I put my things in storage, packed up my car and went across country by myself looking for where I wanted to live. It was a journey of both physical and emotional miles.

    There are other things too: going through a divorce and being able to wish the best for my ex-husband, publishing 32 books, raising two kids–one with Down syndrome, teaching creative writing in a way that has helped other writers win get published and.or win awards, getting a degree in honors math at a time when some were saying women couldn’t do math, living for a year in Paris, France, etc.

    As I said, how do I choose just one?

  55. I am most proud of being a parent. It’s a hard job some days yet mostly it’s been filled with awe, joy and amazement as I watch my children unfold into their unique selves. It’s great supporting their interests, upgrading our relationship as they go through their teen years, and setting an example for them. I’m also proud of the continual growth in my relationship with my husband. It’s a blessing to be part of each others development and to build a life together.

  56. I travel all over the world by myself (female). I’ve been going all over the world since infancy, but as an adult, most of my friends don’t have the time or resources travel as I do, so I go it alone. I’ve met some amazing people and had great times that I don’t think I would have happened into had I been traveling with companions. It is very freeing and enjoyable to go when and where I want. I enjoy traveling with others, but there is nothing like having the independence of going it all alone.

  57. I paid off my mortgage today!! After only 9 and a half years. Well ahead of the original 25 year term. I’m 42 and on a very modest wage. So proud of myself.

  58. After my Layoff a year ago, with severance package they gave me, I paid off EVERY debt I had!! Talk about a blessing in disguise.

  59. The thing I am most proud of is shutting down my business. This may not be something that at first blush sounds like something you should be proud of but I am. I started the website retryit.com with a couple of friends from B-School. We had an idea and self-funded the idea and then gave it a go! I was the CEO and had all kinds of responsibility. I learned what it was like to run a company remotely and what didn’t work about that. I learned how to start a small business and what we need to watch out for. I can honestly say that the money I put into starting and running this company was worth 10X the money I spent getting my MBA.

    My team fought we bonded and we fought again. We learned more about what really makes each other tic and we also learned that everyone is gung-ho until the work starts to happen.

    I would suggest to anyone reading this that when you are looking to start a company DO NOT pick your friends as partners because they are your friends. Be brutal and be honest right from the start. Cull the herd quickly and find the people who want to work to help see your vision take off.

    Great lesson. No I am ready to do it all over again!

  60. I’m most proud of this year! I banged out P90X and got my body in rocking shape! Pimped out my website, wrote an ebook, finished a screenplay — seriously, this year has ROCKED. Looking forward to more growth in 2013!

    Thanks for the question. It’s a good idea to focus on the positive.

  61. I’m very proud of my first successful business validation, that I did a week ago.

  62. Meeting my wife.

    I got bit up by her ex-boy friend, broke my nose, but I kept trying until she was convinced he was not the right one…now we are happily married with 2 kids.

  63. Most proud of: having the guts to quit that horrible job I was in. The boss was borderline, I was miserable, and nothing was getting done. Yes, I was promised a PhD. Eighteen months later, the woman was fired and her lab dissolved, and I’m doing freelance work and waiting for my first child to be born.

    The other thing I’m proud of (even though it seems like such a little thing): being confident enough with the Dutch language to go out and meet new people and haggle for baby stuff over the Internet.

  64. I can hit a volleyball very well. Practice makes perfect.

  65. Last week I came up with a solution to an expensive software customization issue that probably saved the company I work for close to a million dollars. It may not be my biggest accomplishment in life, but right now it’s the reason I’m patting myself on the back.

  66. I created http://meetup.rubyparis.org a meetup group about ruby in Paris which counts today almost 600 members after just a year.

  67. In October 2009, I lost my sense of smell due to a pedestrian-meets-inattentive-driver incident. Along with it, I lost my herbal business. Can’t create aromatherapy items without a sense of smell. :(

    Its been a long struggle, and as a part of my personal healing, I launched Reiki Cornerstones, a virtual Classroom for Reiki Practitioners, healthcare professionals and the general public. :: smile. :: Of course, along the way I also wrote a book on making herbal bath items. Its being edited and I hope to have it up on Kindle in the next two weeks.

    • congratulations on moving forward in your healing process. i have suffered a few freak medical incidents over the past year and haven’t found the bright side other than being grateful for not being worse off. best of luck to you and thanks for being an inspiration!

  68. Becoming a Marine and subsequently making Sergeant in less than 4 years.

  69. Achieving the rank of Eagle Scout and working at America’s oldest Boy Scout camp for 3 summers.

    The three summers spent working at the Boy Scout camp were by and far the best three of my life. The friends I made, the experience that I gained, the skills that I learned all helped to round me out as a person at just the right age (16 – 18 yrs. old). I was able to live away from home before going to college and I srongly assert that it helped prepare me for the responsibilities of balancing the social and educational experiences of college in addition to the exprience of living with random roommates.

    From my Scouting experiences I learned about the environment, service to others and the community, self reliance, and project management (in addition to many other things like sailing and wilderness survival). Scouting helped instill many values that are often overlooked and provided me with some of the most incredible and wonderful expreiences that few people ever have a chance to enjoy (sailing, rafting, hiking, camping, building structures with just rope and spars, sleeping under the stars in the middle of nowhere, performing skits and songs in front of large groups, the list goes on and on). Scouting is an experience that has shaped me for the better and achieving the highest rank is a testiment to hard work, dedication, organizaion, and commitment to self development.

    I still put my Eagle Scout rank on my resume and the skills that I learned as a part of my journey are still with me.

  70. I’m most proud of successfully networking this past year while creating and promoting a new arm of a non-profit teaching agriculture to court-ordered youth. I’m learning tons about running a business. Previously I really struggled to tap into my network. Whether due to shyness, or lack of confidence, or what I don’t know. Now I that I am doing it I am finding that it gets easier as I go.

  71. I just spent the last 5 months and 3 days hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, a 2,600 mile journey from the border of Mexico to Canada. If that wasn’t enough I’m also currently biking across the country for a second time.

  72. I took a vacation to Mexico this summer and just got back from a week long vacation in China, and it was all stress free with the help of an automatic savings plan from Ramits book!

  73. I never stop learning and use the knowledge to propel my career.

    So far, it got me to the top-notch research institute. I am just one step away from my dream job.

  74. Honestly, I am proud of making it to this point in my life without crashing and burning. There really isn’t enough said about how hard it is to get up everyday and live in a non-self destructive way year after year. Being able to do that is something to be proud of in my book!

  75. I am proud of not listening to negative people 2 years ago who strongly advised me to NOT quit my job and start a company in the middle of the worst recession in my lifetime. No only did I not listen, but I slowly removed negative people from my life and I focused on building new relationships with positive people who inspire. So after 2 years, I have more money in my back account than EVER before but more importantly; my lifestyle, my health, my stress level and my optimism has transformed my world to lead a more productive and fulfilled life.
    People can do amazing things.. believe it. Live it. and just do it.

    • What you’re most proud of really caught my eye. I have the possibility of leaving my job with almost a years pay. I wanted to take the opportunity to kick start my graphic design freelancing business. I had decided not to do it. However, I wonder if I’m going to kick myself for not… Congrats on the success!

  76. I made $12,000 this year in my first year of “side income” freelancing – I told myself I wanted to make an extra grand every month, and I did!

    I paid off my student loans this summer – 3 years after graduating!

  77. The thing I’m most proud of is my personal body transformation. In the last 2 years, I have officially lost 90 pounds, but probably over 100 at my heaviest. This change was a lot easier than I expected it to be and I have added a significant number of years to my life expectancy. This is a big win for me.

  78. I lost 30 pounds so far this year, quit drinking, and completely overhauled my diet.

    Those things are nice, but I’m most proud of myself for giving up entirely on life. It’s liberating to quit trying to chase the carrot.

  79. I like this idea. It’s very positive, encouraging, and inspiring.

    My Brag: I left my well-paid, mega stressful job at a Big 4 to go backpacking for 6 months around South America with my fiance. This trip not only gave me time to really get to know the man I’m marrying, but also let me really think through where I want to take my life and professional experiences…all the while visiting amazing sites and meeting wonderful people.

  80. I’m most proud of getting out of the way of myself so that opportunities, great people and love surrounds me. From a job oppty that just landed in my lap because a friend said he liked me so much (I’ve only ever talked to him on the phone, never an in-person meeting), to someone saying how much they missed me at a recent company meeting. I most proud of being endearing, that I touch someone’s life positively sometimes regardless of how I’m feeling or what I want. Get out of the way of yourself people!

  81. I just published my second print book! It took me about six months to get it done and publish through Createspace. It is about my journey through abusive relationships even though I consider myself a “smart” woman. It’s called No More Crumbs…and includes lessons learned that I pass on to other “smart” women who just can’t seem to stop dating crummy guys. It’s on Amazon.com now. Yayyy Me!!!

  82. Two years ago I turned 50 years old. I rode my motorcycle beginning in Mexicali Mexico, rode through all of the lower 48 states (documented stops in every one), through British Columbia Canada, and finished in Hyder Alaska. Big deal, right? Except I did it in 9.5 days! Later that year I traveled to Hawaii where I rented a motorcycle for a day, successfully completing my “Ride All 50 States In My 50th Year” goal.

    This year I followed up by riding to Prudhoe Bay Alaska to visit a cousin who works there.

  83. I work a full-time job (40-50 hours/week) and just started a graduate program this semester. I attend school part-time, class time is 8 hours/week. I have class Tues and Thurs and I ONLY study on Mon, Wed and Fri from 6-9pm (9 hours/week). I do NOT study on weekends. My lowest grade for any assignment has been 95%.

    This takes a lot of planning and self-discipline, but the payoff is totally worth it. I’m so proud that I’m doing well and not letting work and school take over my life!

  84. I don’t know what I’m most proud of – it change over time.

    Right now it’s getting a plan for how I’m going to change my economy from taking money from my savings to putting money into my savings.

    And then it’s finally getting CodingCollege going!

  85. Two things:

    1. 1st person in my family to go to college. Got Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees while working full time and damn if I didn’t make the Dean’s List too! : )

    2. Finally started my own business after realizing (after many years in the worker bee trenches) that I didn’t want to live my life based on someone else’s timetable/agenda/schedule, etc. Best thing I ever did! I started it as a side business while still working a couple of part-time jobs to keep myself afloat financially, and this past summer, I was finally able to quit my last part-time and fully support myself on my business.

  86. I paid off my $31,000 lien to the IRS, my $3000 attorney’s fees, and my $21,000 credit card debt, plus took my plundered 401k from $0 to $250,000, in 10 years.

  87. Thank you Ramit for this sharing opportunity. I am most proud of my free personal mind mastery video series. This allows me to offer so much more then what I am able to in simple sessions. Thank you again:)
    http://youtu.be/5BqRAakONwo

  88. I learn incredibly quickly – which is generally a hard trait to showcase, but over one month last summer, I picked up the violin and reached about the same skill level as most people reach after their first year

    Still trying to figure out how to make a difference (and hopefully some side income) with that trait, though

  89. I didn’t do any internships in college and I landed 4 offers on my way out. The job I ended up choosing didn’t have great pay, but, of course I couldn’t expect too much so I took what I could get. I’ve worked hard to build my way up since and the job has even helped me find my passion.

  90. I am most proud of getting a nuclear engineering degree. I feel I wasted my time not pursuing something I was more fascinated in. Going after something because the journey sounded difficult was chasing something for all the wrong reasons in hindsight. As someone who does not possess a technical mind, I feel this was a great accomplishment.

  91. Hi my name is Paul and I am most proud of not only learning to speak Japanese but read & write as well. In the process I have made some incredible friends!

  92. I’m 19 years old. (I’m South African so my apologies in advance for unfamiliar terms).
    2 years ago I was in 12th grade and being the only hearing impaired student in a high school, it wasn’t easy at all. I had a teacher who was also the principal and he’d pick on me everytime I asked a question in class. He’d make sarcastic remarks and call me stupid in front of the whole class and they would laugh along with him. It got so bad that I stopped asking questions in class. I also had another teacher who called me out and shouted at me for “being in the wrong school” when he realised I was hearing impaired and didn’t hear him calling my name during attendance. He went on and on about it and the whole class was quiet. I just sat in my seat and silently willed myself not to cry. After class I told my best friend everything, (she wasn’t in the same class) and she cried with me and we went to report the teacher. However, I couldn’t file an official complaint as I needed witnesses and the students in my class refused to let me write down their names saying “they don’t want to be involved.” Needless to say, I was pretty down but the vice principal inquired to the before mentioned teacher and he apologised. Though he didn’t apologise in person to me. Class went as normal.

    Towards the end of my 12th grade we were writing exams and one day while walking to the exam centre, I passed the principal who said to me, “I hope you’re passing because it will be sad if you don’t.” I just smiled and said, “ok”. I wrote all exams with a positive mind.

    When the results were released I had obtained 5 distinctions (As) out of 7 subjects. I was really proud of myself and let me tell you, it felt good to look at everyone who shunned me with my results in hand. I appeared in a local newspaper, received countless certificates and a medallion -and place- of honor.

    Currently I am a second year graphic design student at a private college. I opted for it rather than the government universities because of the small classes. Government (state colleges to Americans :-) ) have huge lecture classes and it would have been difficult for me to really hear in classes. If I had gone to one of those universities I would have studied for free because of my results and where I’m at I received no benefits and I my mom (who is the only breadwinner at home) has to work hard to pay for my fees. I work very hard too and matter of fact exams are coming in a week). Regardless of not receiving anything that would contribute towards my fees (other than discounts in fees for good marks) I’m really proud of progressing through tenacity and proving to people and myself that my disability has no limitations to what I can achieve.

    SORRY FOR THE LONG POST.

  93. Tilted Pixel, the company that I started back in my second year of university with the simple goal of graduating debt free (success by the way) just turned seven years old last month. It now employs a team of people, and has helped many other businesses to take advantage of the ridiculously cool stuff you can do on the web to make your business grow. Including a few that are very profitable highly automated online businesses, which is probably what makes me proudest, helping others attain their dreams.

    It’s been a hell of a lot of work to get it to this point, and I’m also of the mindset that a business should enable your lifestyle, not stifle it. So I’m equally proud of the fact that I was able to take a TWO MONTH vacation to Europe this summer, during which I worked a grand total of less than 40 hours. All because we have a great team and processes now in place, so not everything has to go through me.

    My next big goal is to open source the super cool framework we built over the past seven years, aimed specifically at “people who build websites for other people”. It solves some common problems for web developers and their clients, and the big hairy audicious goal is to launch it in a way that actually gets developer traction. Hopefully in a year or two I can post that as a success story too.

  94. I’m most proud of having completed my degree in mechanical engineer. I was among less than fifteen females in my year in a class of roughly 160 students.

  95. I am proud of myself for moving 2000 miles away from my friends and family on my own.
    I now can cook a full Indian dinner and can take care of myself while going to grad school. I will be graduating this spring!!
    I now know that the only limits there are in life are the ones where you listen to others who say it can’t be done.

  96. When I purchased a new car last year, I had saved enough money to be able to pay cash for it, and not have to use any credit at all.

  97. I have a few things I’m proud of. I bowled 2 perfect games in 3 weeks,that’s 12 strikes in a row.

    I started my own Etsy shop selling vegan knit creations.

  98. I’m most proud of my proposal to my fiancee, and the events leading up to it… Starting with acquiring the ring. You see, at the time, we didn’t particularly have a lot of money, no disposable income, and I was constantly picking up more shifts. But every shift, I stashed $20 away. Eventually I had enough to purchase a ring… A stone rather, then the ring. I wanted it handmade and unique. I even had her mom go gem shopping with me when she was.visiting from out of town. Bonus!
    So I had the ring made, then planned my proposal… A whole day of it. First to our first brunch when we moved to NY. Then a stroll through the SoHo merchant aisle. Then another stroll through Central Park, where we ended up at Bethesda Fountain. I set up my own little camera and everything, took her out into the middle of the walk, and read back a poem she had givena me when we first met when she was going through a particularly rough patch in her life. Then we sat and had a glass of champagne in the park I had prepped. Don’t tell the authorities. And then someite afterproposal festivities.
    That’s what I’m most proud of. Tou can watch the proposal here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZsVNoWeWJY&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  99. I was accepted into the graduate school of my dreams, Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. I crushed it – earning a 3.9 GPA and a $15k academic scholarship for my last semester!!!

  100. Most proud of being married almost 15 years with 2 awesome kids and taking a huge leap of faith to adopt a third. Have reached an amazing level of success in my industry, co-authored several books, survived eight tough years of my start-up and have managed to grow it slowly and solidly. I’m proud that I can work from home on my own terms with incredible flexibility and can pursue side income from photography and blogging. Proud that my extensive social media and blogging experience has brought me cool opportunities. Proud that we live way below our means and have a not small nest egg and are able to help others a lot. Proud that all of these things are because of the God I love, and not myself.

  101. I’m proud of myself for getting off my backside and making a change.
    While on a training run for the U.S. military 6 years ago, my right knee buckled, the pain started and I knew something had happened. By the end of the day, it had swelled so bad it filled my pants leg. My orthopedic surgeon said I had torn the meniscus. He also showed me even more, older damage, to my knee from years of abuse. His final words were “Don’t Run”.

    6 years passed and my weight crept up. My age crept up. My waistline crept up. Finally, I had had enough. For a few years, I had been reading tidbits about barefoot/minimalist running. In April this year, I read a final few articles, watched a final few videos, laced up my shoes and went to a nearby track.

    By the end of June, I was running miles at a stretch and began running with a local running club whose routes ranged anywhere from 3 to 6 miles. Labor day I ran my first 10k since 2005, and promptly ran the 5k ran after it. At the end of September, I ran a 15k without stopping.

    My weight is down, my blood pressure is down and my waistline is shrinking. Just two days ago, I ran 8 miles on local Greenways because it was a gorgeous day and I wanted to. I even took a side trail because “Why not?” sounded good. I am planning for two half marathons in the next 6 months for my next goals.

  102. This is a pretty intimidating list… Let’s see if I can post something respectable.

    I’m proud that:

    I have a 790 credit score, I’ve bought all three of my houses with cash, I’ve seen 3 rehab projects through to the end (2 of which with me doing much of the manual labor), I completed a full year of math in high school over a summer, I wrote a 50+ page ebook over a weekend, I can live on working 1-2 hours a day writing from home (or theoretically anywhere), I will soon be able to live just on the rents from my properties, I can do one-armed pushups and one-legged squats (max of 15 and 7 per side, respectively), and that I’ve gone from having no ability to charm women to having a current total of 50 lovers (and it’s only Monday).

    I’ve also won a couple national awards in the arts, and was commissioned to do several pieces for various professors when I was in college.

    Uh…

    Man, I’ve got nothing. Time to get to work.

  103. This December, I will become one of three member in my family to earn a bachelors degree. However, I am more proud of the fact that I will be the first person in my family to pursue a graduate degree. I raising the bar for future generations to follow and, hopefully, exceed.

  104. I had bad luck.
    From 16 to 20, I was in a relationship with a sadistic psychopath. He cut out all the friends and family out of my life, controlled my eating, sleeping and exercise to the extent of giving me bulimia and insomnia, was physically violent so much that I got addicted to pain and hurting myself, manipulated me to think I’m a horrible non-feeling monster, that I hurt the ones I love, and that other people will want to hurt me.
    Some strong part of my brain never gave up, even when I couldn’t breathe and the pain went on and on.

    I am so fucking proud, that I got out of it. And instead of decreeing my life ruined because of all the shit that damaged my brain, I changed it all:
    I forced myself to talk to people and trust them. I created a rehab program to myself to stop needing pain (from judo to karate to hiphop). I regained my friends and got new ones, I reunited with my family. I stuck through the trauma attacks, made them less and easier, even though psychologists said such long-time trauma can’t be undone. I studied psychology and self-help in order to understand and treat my problems. I finished my studies by doing the work of two years of in one year, then worked in Europe and learned new languages, then went to China and changed my name and my language. I now have two companies and am involved in start-up and mastermind groups both in my own country and China, and have the best and coolest and smartest and nicest friends. Every day is still a challenge.

    People say I’m the most positive, bravest, persistent person they know, sometimes they even think I’m a bit crazy-happy. Being alive surely can’t be that amazing?

    No one knows the whole story, and I will never tell :)

  105. Hi there, we like to prize ourselves, big time. My first kindle book is live and it’s been an extraordinary experience!

    Do it yourself, it’s definitely worth it and pays well ;-) http://ow.ly/egPGt

  106. Got rid of 20 years worth of HORRIBLE back pain, along with 25 pounds of fat.

  107. I went back to college when my youngest child was 2 1/2 months old(I also had a 3-yr old, a 7 yr old, and an 11 yr old). I went full time and one year after starting back, my husband divorced me and disappeared. So, I am most proud that I graduated from college AND raised 4 children on my own.

  108. If you hesitate to publish yourself guys – I commit myself to help you for free, because it’s a great challenge and it’s so simple the same time

  109. I’m most proud of my photography, especially those images taken at night. Here is a link to my night work: http://www.flickr.com/search/?q=night&w=13814527%40N00&s=rec

  110. My mother was a career foster parent raising countless children for others. When she passed away twelve years ago I became the guardian of my two adoptive sisters who have special needs. Two weeks before she passed she legally adopted me and I am paying it forward raising my two sisters. While it is exhausting and stressful it is what I am most proud of. I am also using my brand and raising funds for Komen for The Cure. This is my second year doing it and it pleases to know that raising awareness and looking for better treatment will keep kids from losing their mothers, sisters or any other important women in their lives.

  111. I qualified for the Hawaii Ironman despite being of quite mediocre talent… but I was able to train harder and execute better to get there.

  112. Once sold a logo for $10 and I probably the best friend you could ever have.

  113. I’m proud that I fought wildfire in Alaska after graduating from college, cycled across America, am on track to getting a JD without going into debt, and am pursuing the woman of my dreams.

  114. [correction]
    Once sold a logo for $10k and I probably the best friend you could ever have.

  115. I’ve lost 50 pounds in the past 10 months.

  116. Sounds weird, but one of the things I’m most proud of is getting fired and then turning around and making it on my own as a freelance designer. Since getting fired about 5 months ago, I’m making 2x or 3x what I was making at my ‘stable job,’ not too mention my quality of life is 10x better. I’ve turned down 2 nice job offers since then, and I love my current self-employed situation.

  117. This is incredibly personal. How awesome that people are just freely giving of themselves, without judgement. I have loved reading through the comments and am quietly applauding them for their personal successes.

    I am proud of so many things. I have an amazing family. I am proud that my husband and I are able to live together through perseverance of getting his green card. I am proud of my daughter for being accepted in to a high performing school and for being challenged and not giving up and for finding her footing socially. I am proud that she has an entrepreneurial spirit and wants to create a life for herself instead of following the pack. I am proud that I lost 70lbs on my own by making small adjustments in my life and not giving up things that I love (mocha lattes with soy and sugar). I am proud that we consistently reduce our carbon footprint and are working daily to reduce our debt after reading IWTYTBR. I am proud that I am regaining confidence in myself after trying to be accepted for something that I am not. I am proud to be an advice wh*re who gives away information that I’ve paid for because rising tides… I am proud to be pursuing my dreams of helping other female small business owners GET IT and empowering them to grow bigger despite the internal conflict and negativity they berate themselves with on the daily. I am proud to know that I am not a perfect person and that I need to forgive myself of my past and my mistakes and move on.

  118. I am proud of a lot of things in my life which may be trivial to many on this forum but mean a lot to me personally.

    One thing that I am proud of that I did this year is run the” TOUGH MUDDER”. It is a 12 mile race with a lot of challenges in between. One challenge was to climb a 10 feet high wood plank and jump into a 10 feet deep pool of cold water. I over came my fear of height and water and I am really very proud of this. By the way I have never run any kind of race before and this was my first race.

    Some pictures of my race as well as information on Tough Mudder below.
    http://www.facebook.com/#!/photo.php?fbid=734259352145&set=t.542286308&type=1&theater
    http://toughmudder.com/about/

    So for all you people out there reading this, the only person who can stop you from achieving your goals is you. So never let other decide what you can do or cannot do.

    Lot of great stories on this blog and I am truly impressed by Andrew Tapp story.

  119. After building a number of lower quality sites with average content I built my first big brand (TheSportsGeek.com) which now gets roughly 100 repeat visitors per day because we provide quality content and a good user experience.

  120. I kind of come from a “trashy family.” I was raised by a single mom who was drunk most of my childhood.

    I struggled a lot (and still) growing up trying to figure out how to be a “regular” person. Long story short, I’m proud that I actually got my college degree, I’m proud that yes I have a regular 9-5 job M-F (your techniques are amazing!), and I’m proud to be slowly getting myself out of debt and knowing I’m becoming more financially responsible (I love Automation)

    From the bottom of my heart, thank you for providing the material you do. I genuinely don’t feel as afraid of life and money anymore because of somebody like you. I don’t feel like poor trash anymore.

  121. I paid off my student loans in 2 years and live debt free. Also, I just moved to California because I wanted to & just found what I think may very well be my dream job (for right now). I start tomorrow! Thanks for the forum to reflect.

  122. That I paid off my debt even while being on unemployment AND I am getting interviews.

    I love going on interviews and not being desperate. I can be calm and focused. And still get an occasional latte. :)

  123. I’ve taught myself to speak over 10 different languages. I’ve only ever lived in the US and has hardly traveled outside the country.

  124. While I’ve been paying off my debt and will be finished earning my MBA this semester, I think my greatest thing I’m most proud of is backpacking through Europe by myself one summer. It was such an amazing growth experience, especially as a young, single, American woman. So many people asked who I went with, and I was proud to say I did it by myself!

  125. I think the thing that I’m most proud of is that I was able to become a successful Realtor after a top agent told me that I probably wasn’t going to make it and should think about another line of work.

    That was 7 years ago.

    It has been a difficult road and I definitely have had challenges along the way, but I’m proud to say that year to date I’ve closed 25 sales and I have 5 in escrow now. I will make over $100k this year and I know that I can do so much better. I’m really excited for the next few years as I’m raising my income goals to $200k! I’m very confident that I can hit it too!

    I’m $25k away from being debt free and really excited to pay that off as well. I started this year with approx over $49k in debt. The only debt left is Uncle Sam…

  126. I lost 50 pounds in 1 year by just altering my diet (I hate exercise, was never a fan of overtoned muscles on ladies anyway)

    My boss presented an open promotion at my last review and in the course of the next year I worked hard and got it!

    I saved up all of the money I need to pay for my wedding in a little over a year and a half (from the day he proposed up to now)

    Aaaaand there’s much more to come I’m sure :D

  127. I’m most proud right now of the fact, I taught myself to draw over the Northern Hempishere summer while working about 90 hours a week (the past weekend was literally my first days off in many months). And I set a goal to get good enough to draw, ink and color 1 panel of my own comic book by May 2013.

    I beat that goal – I completed it this past weekend.

    Thanks Ramit for giving us this chance to brag :).

  128. I want to write a book, so I started writing. Next thing you know, I’m at 42,000 words and counting, and it’s only been a couple of months. NaNoWriMo is coming up and I will participate. Tackling something that sounded so hard beforehand has been something I can definitely brag about.

  129. While in college, I earned dual degrees is finance and accountancy, studied abroad five times, interned abroad twice and ended up traveling to more than 30 countries in the three short years that I was attending the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. I was also instrumental in re-engineering the local chapter of AIESEC resulting in sustained membership growth of 100%+

  130. I gave up my miserable Silicon Valley job to ride my bike across Europe following a sixth-century Celtic Saint – and wrote a book about it.

    Now I’m taking on the harder challenge of reinventing my work life around a commitment to documentary storytelling for organizations and families while keeping up my end of the family earning.

  131. I finished college in just about two years without ever going to summer school and still having fun!

  132. I’m 24, married, and happily working as an aerospace engineer. It’s pretty sweet.

  133. After paying off my student loan at 22, I have not paid a dime in interest and been debt free for over 7 years. I am on my way to hitting a goal of $100k in net worth by the end of this year.

    This is all at a job making between $38-51k, with some freelance on the side.

  134. I’m proud of teaching myself to maintain a focus on the positive and being more authentic.

    I just started a masters program in communication, and rather than focusing on what is safe (organizational communication stuff like leadership, pr, marketing) but not what I enjoy, I’m focusing on what I love

  135. I am proud of getting a double degree in Finance and Economics in University that I used when I moved from the Philippines to get a job for a fortune company in New York. While at work back in 2005, I stumbled upon IWTYTBR because I was looking for negotiating techniques to buy a car. I ended up reading all the blog posts instead and didn’t buy the car. From then on I was able to save up and financed my 16 month travel in Asia and Europe and still went home with 1 year emergency savings fund, a ROTH IRA (Thanks for the tip on the IWTYTBR book) and a solidly funded 401k that I started when I was 22 until I was 27 before I took off for my trip. I am proud that I taught myself to be financially literate based from my personal studies. But above all, I am most proud because I took action which enabled me to live the life of my dreams.

  136. I passed my licensure exam with a minimal amount of time to study. I managed to make time for studying while maintaining a rigorous work schedule of 60 hours a week. I am great multi-tasker and I’m proud of it!

  137. Darn phone.
    And what I love is rhetoric, persuasion, and competitive speech and debate. I’m trying out judging a completely different style of debate than what I competed in and building a new skill set.

  138. I stopped doing freelancing work (developing websites) where I was not able to earn more then $ 800 /mo. & worked hard on polishing my skills to get a new job with pay raise of $ 32,000 i.e 65% more then what I was getting paid for in my old full time job.

  139. I am proud that I married my 2 loves, photography and philanthropy and named it Lens for Life. This happened in June, and I am committed to donating a % of all my photography fees to charity, namely the ones nearest to my heart. I worked in non profit for 20 yrs while (sold out) to working in the last 11 yrs in a job that my hard core Asian parents wanted for me… To be a pharmacist.
    I have juggled photography and philantrophy all the while and decided to say goodbye to the drug world and join my 2 passions together.
    My mission is to empower other photographers or videographers to create a social responsible arm to their biz too, because we set our own prices, and well… Bc we can. So Lens for life is a movemen to encourage like minded folks to realize hey, we are documenting lives, so why not forward the lives of another in the process.
    The 2nd goal of Lens for Life is building my website to feature other socially aware folks and spotlight them.. Eventually cataloging this businesses so as a consumer we can put our dollars in companies who are doing good things, such as the TOMs shoes of the world, 31Bits jewelry , Krochet kids to name a few. Drop on by the site!
    I came across Ramit via his interview in Chase Jarvis this weekend!! and to see if you are reading this Ramit I will throw this out…
    I would love to offer you some new headshots, because I value who you are. And if you think I did an exceptional job, please refer me to just 3 people:)

    My stuff: http://www.annievovan.com
    My baby http://www.lensforlife.org
    Photography for Philanthropy
    Of note, I had my first photography exhibit last Thursday as part of the LA Artwalk and raised $3180!! All proceeds go to the http://www.thesenaseproject.org
    The photos were my travel journal photos from my village stay in Ghana , and now we have enough to build 2 classrooms in West africa

    Cheers’!! And if you got this far, I would love your thoughts and ways how lens for life can expand to any photographers you know who’d be down to to the same!!

  140. I’m most proud of raising 5k for Affordable Housing and then cycling 3500 miles in 53 days across this country to support this cause.

  141. I went on a blind date a week for a little over a year. The experiment didn’t yield any romantic results; however, it dispelled any fears I had to go out and meet people and have a conversation. It taught me as much about what I don’t want as what I do want. I don’t think I’d be in the relationship I’m in now if it wasn’t for this experiment I conducted on myself.

  142. I am proud that one of the retired founders of the company where I worked told multiple people at a gathering that he wanted to see me. When we made contact, he proceeded to tell me how much he enjoyed reading the newsletters I publish – and that they are making a difference.

    I am also proud that our former company president, who took a high-ranking position in the company that bought us out, included a message from me to all employees in his column after my position was eliminated. He referred to me as a friend.

  143. I started my college swimming career as the slowest swimmer on the team (by far) and graduated an All-American. I won the “Most Improved” award not once, but twice! That’s not supposed to happen.

  144. I’ve had a lot to be proud of in the last 2 years, but I’m still most proud of the depth of friendships I’ve been able to maintain with people. One of my most valued friendships just hit the 25 year mark and to me that’s what makes life worth it.

  145. My brag is that I’m alive and in love with being alive.

    I suffered major, debilitating depression for over two decades, starting when I was still a child; from my mid-teens on, it became suicidal. What was really crazy is that I didn’t know that it wasn’t normal until I was 20 and my then-best-friend-now-partner asked me, worried and bewildered, how long I’d had these problems. My family always just said I was “sensitive” or “hormonal” and it had literally never occurred to me that this was something that I didn’t just have to live with.

    By then, I was out on my own, living in an expensive city on very little money and with no health insurance or access to good mental health care. All I had was my desire to get better. It was a long, long, slow process over several years, with lots of setbacks and some times when I still formed exit strategies and set dates for my own death, but finally a decade later I reached a turning point and I knew that even though things were still hard and I wouldn’t always feel great, I was definitely done wanting to die.

    I didn’t stop working on myself then. I worked to get solvent, I worked to have a job where I would thrive and be valued, I worked to make events and creative projects happen on the side, I worked to learn how to build a fulfilling life and how to be an intelligent optimist and how to view the world as a beautiful, exciting ride full of wonders and possibility and how to be basically a happy and positive person. And I succeeded. I did a lot of cool things and had some great experiences in that time, but what I’m proudest of is that I didn’t give up. Even though I spent so long feeling worthless, I kept believing I could reach a day when I would truly see myself as someone with so much to offer the world, someone whose existence makes the world better. I got there. And I’m proud of that.

    The best part is that I’ve been able to help other people who are struggling the way I used to. I can say “I’ve been there” and I really have. I know how to listen and I know what things will probably be a real help. Because of my experience, more than once I’ve been able to know when something that someone else said or wrote was a big red flag that they were attempting suicide, and to intervene and alert the people who could help them before it was too late. Sometimes I think anything else I accomplish in life now is just gravy. =)

  146. I have had some bad luck in my professional career and earlier this year, I took a HUGE leap (at least for me) and decided to purchase the Dream Job program from Ramit. A couple months later, I can’t say I have found my dream job but I am certainly on my way with more focus and confidence. Being risk averse, this was a huge step for me and I am so glad I did it!

  147. I’m most proud of having the courage to dare to actively work hard toward my dreams after decades of fear and inaction. Better late than never.

  148. Earning the title “Marine,” and creating a military niche blog because of it.

  149. My skill and gift is taking incredibly complex physiological process, especially when it comes to trauma, PTSD, as well as physical injuries and how to best recover from them, and explaining and educating people (my clients) in a way that is not dumbing down or creating stupid step-by-step approaches towards healing and health. I understand that we live and breathe in a complex environment and that we too are complex in our make-up and in order to actually learn and have it stick, the complexity can’t be left out.

    I once explained the entire biochemical process of omega-three fatty acid metabolism for a university project (hard stuff to understand) and the prof at the end say “you have a knack for this stuff”…..what I realized much later is that she meant I have a knack for teaching complex subjects in a fun and informative way……I will never forget that teacher or that moment. It gave me permission to call myself a teacher.

  150. Bought my elder brother a €10,000 premium female escort in Amsterdam. He had only three months to live and he didn’t want to die as a virgin. Perhaps the most memorable thing I have ever done

    • That is AWESOME DB. Many people would poo-poo that, but it reminds me of a very poignant part in the US philosopher, Ken Wilber’s memoir of his wife Terry dying of breast cancer in germany and his desire for a women who still had her breasts. The book is called Grace and Grit.

    • That is AWESOME DB. Many people would poo-poo that, but it reminds me of a very poignant part in the US philosopher, Ken Wilber’s memoir of his wife Terry dying of breast cancer in germany and his desire for a women who still had her breasts. The book is called Grace and Grit.

  151. I completely re-organized and re-structured my finances, allowing me to pay off all but one of my credit cards. Setup a savings account to pay for a my next car (with cash).

    Quit my old, soul crushing job and am now doing something I love and getting paid very well to do it. I even made an extra $3k on the side last month doing freelance computer repair (raised my rates to $75/hr), which I put towards student loans.

  152. I am most proud of what I have managed to overcome. I have been on my own since I was 16 years old, so I didn’t have the benefit of any positive role-models, or people who could teach me about life. There were a lot of HUGE mistakes that I made (some of which I’m still recovering from), mostly because I didn’t have anyone to help guide me around them, but more because since I had been on my own since I was 16 I thought I knew everything (of course, duh!) :) I am finally to a place where I can take all of that cumulative knowledge from those very hard-learned lessons and begin creating the life that I *truly* want…its been a long road, but I can’t be stopped now!

  153. Finally feeling like my parents are proud of me.

    I was an 18 year old shy, scrawny nerd when I moved out to Fort Collins, CO from long Island, NY to attend school at CSU. I wanted to become a vet and since they had a vet school out here and It was a far way from home I went. My parents visited about once a year and on this most recent trip they said something that made my really proud of myself. Saying that I have “Grown Up”.

    I went from 130lbs to a current 170lb from lifting 4x a week and dedicating myself to eating and lifting hard. Using psychological tricks to make it easier such as setting my clothes out the night before..Getting a rice cooker for easy calories..basically limiting my chances of backing out. I completed a marathon just to brag about it..I don’t really care about running and don’t plan to run another one.

    Joined toastmasters and will have completed 10 speeches by the end of this year. Conquering my fear of public speaking. In high school I honestly said a total of 500 words during my entire high school career.

    Got a seasonal job and learned the ups and downs of being a waiter/bartender at a mountain ranch in Colorado.

    Found an awesome girlfriend somehow.. and as my uncle said..its easy when its easy.

    Every time they visited they had to help me with something..ie. loans, money, figuring shit out..but this visit was the first time they didn’t have to. They finally enjoyed themselves and that mean’t a lot to me. Its not something can can be measured in dollars or anything but it was a huge satisfaction to me and I’m sure them in turn.

  154. I’ve always wanted to be a writer and a teacher, and after two Harvard graduate degrees (that I’m proud to have but didn’t necessarily bring me closer to my goals), I am finally going to be a full-fledged writer and teacher. My self-help book for women, Be Your Own Boyfriend, will be pre-released through a Kickstarter campaign in December 2012, and then come out officially on February 13, 2013. I’m also applying for TAPIF to teach high school English in France for 7 months starting October 2013. I am so excited!

  155. Keeping my cool when I found a burglar in my house.

  156. I won grand prize for the 2012 International CD Baby/Indabamusic Songwriter’s Competition, made my debut album with Grammy Winner Will Ackerman when I was 20 years old, and have my song on an record with my heroes to help animal awareness (“Giving Animals A Voice Through Music”, feat. Emmylou Harris, John Oates, Neko Case, Shelby Lynne.)
    http://www.indabamusic.com/opportunities/cd-baby-songwriting-contest
    http://www.williamackerman.com/Producer/recent-clients.html
    http://www.bestfriends.org/aboutus/media/030909amfcdrelease.cfm

  157. I’m proud of my senior thesis, which was 50 pages and an ambitious foray into entrepreneurship, ambitious compared to class expectations even though I didn’t earn any money or even get any suggestions on where to go next. I am proud of a lot of papers I’ve written, and lyrics.

    I’m proud that I have been able to eat a healthy breakfast consistently first thing when I wake up.

    I’m proud that I finally sat down to free-write last night and wrote for two hours, including part of what I think could soon be an ebook on behavior change specifically written for people who want to meditate regularly but haven’t yet made that a reality.

    There’s one exercise in particular that I’m proud of because I think it can be really revealing as to people’s “passive barriers”…kind of like Ramit’s Little Test about increasing his gym attendance after he identified that physically getting up to get gym clothes and shoes was a big barrier…I offer a really quick system to identifying these barriers. I would be way more proud of that if I wrote an ebook and got it out to people to help them and put my name on the map, though.

    On that note, I’m also proud of my system for painless dream recall and archiving in the cloud (zachgrove.com).

    I am proud that I stuck through some really abrasive and callous social environments and living situations the past two years…that had some extreme low points.

    I am proud of my system for weekly testing a new habit Monday through Friday.

  158. I saved 20,000 dollars in 18 months, quit the lame corporate day job I took just to get a paycheck, went on a 3 month tour of Europe and the US with my band, came home and chilled out for a couple of months, got my real estate license, and am now a successful real estate agent in Hoboken, NJ. Getting my New York license in a month, so hit me up for your real estate needs, Ramit.

  159. Well, I personally think most people brag about stuff in the past that happened many years ago. Yet, most people haven’t achieved anything worthwhile today.

    Most people as they get older lose their “Balls” and don’t do anything to make extra cash, or help others. And don’t give me this BS about people being too busy working and taking care of family to achieve big things.

    I’m not going to brag about things I’ve achieved because frankly I don’t care to.

    I’d rather see people make a boatload of cash and stay in the shadows. That makes me proud. Reason I say that is most people get pissed off when someone succeeds $cash wise. They’d tell you otherwise, but they’re just fooling themselves.

    So get in the trenches and create your own little empire–offline–not online.
    Most won’t make a dime online. Work a job if you have to and create some profits for yourself on the side. That’s something to be proud of.

    And don’t tell everyone. I’m a little different than most who have money.

    Mark

  160. I am most proud of the fact that when people have been basically written off by the traditional medical system I can help them. My clients value my work enough to recommend me to those they love the most. Many of the families I help end up taking Body Talk. I’ve helped people all over the world including some I’ve never met in person.

  161. Since finding IWT through Lifehacker, I’ve raised my pay wage and been promoted at my desk job, took up school again, started a business while doing freelance work on the side, setup my 401(k) and Roth IRA and have plenty of cash to enjoy and am in the best shape of my life. Thanks, Ramit, for the inspiration. I’m going to be purchasing the Earn1k program this week to see how much more can be accomplished.

  162. Got laid off in the final months of my MBA. Instead of looking for another job in IT (15+ years, achieved director level), I took action on some principles Ramit frequently teaches and used some HUSTLE to start a business.

    Launched on Kickstarter and received over $9,0000 in pledges in 30 days.
    (http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1523727102/10terra-eco-friendly-cases-for-ipad-iphone-nexus-7)

    Now my products are in production and I’m in business for myself.
    (www.10terra.com)

    Ramit, thanks for the attitude you spread and the concepts you teach.

  163. i feel comfortable enough to fart in front of friends and strangers in public.

  164. Two years after my marriage ended to an emotionally unstable spouse, I am standing on my own two feet happy to me and proud of who I have become. The road to learning to like myself after dealing with that kind of rejection has been long and hard but the end product is beautiful.

    See, today, I no longer walk on egg shells. I am free from abusive and an unhealthy situation. Free to have a whole different kind of life than I ever would have been able to have with him and free to be 100% authentically me.

    After he left, I started over in a new city. I am no longer so and so’s ex. I am Eliza. I am fearless, strong, and independent. I learned compassion. I learned of God’s love.

    I learned that each day is an opportunity to experience joy. I will no longer survive, I will live–each and everyday to its fullest. I now see the beauty in the simplest moments of life. My perspective has changed and I am happy most of the time.

    After an experience that made me feel totally rejected, worthless, and disconnected from the world around me, liking myself and the life I have created, is a major accomplishment.

  165. I’m proud of myself for finally owning my attempts to take the SE exam, and giving myself permission to take 3 weeks off to study for it this time around, and studying at least 8 hours a day. I WILL kick its ass.

  166. First of all: it’s very very inspiring to read some stories here (cannot read everything :) )
    At the moment I’m proud to be hired as an consultant to manage a website project at an hour rate that normally only 40 year old consultants “dare” to charge (I’m 27).
    I’m also proud of my own webdesign company http://www.ApolloDesign.nl where I have continous work without advertising. Proud of living on my own and managing all the **** ;) It’s not that hard so don’t want to brag about it, but I can really advise this even when you are in a relationship. You get to know yourself. I’m proud to be employed at my friend his company jewelry wholesale http://www.behave.eu and taking part in groups where people live a more “conscious” life and share my knowledge. I want to combine this with my consultancy providing people a no stress life, help them to do what they love and that all with a lot of love. Don’t have the time and all the knowledge right now, but when it comes it comes :) Thank you for sharing your knowledge Ramit!

  167. I am proud that, when faced with the choice to spend the rest of my life in a horrible spiral or get the help I need, I am choosing to get help. It’s really painful and I have some pretty bad days, but I know in the end I will be much better off.

  168. Got over years of severe depression, social anxiety, panic attacks, suicidal tendancies and self-harming without professional help because I couldn’t afford it and my parents don’t believe those things are “real.” All of this while going to school for my Bachelor’s degree and working to be able to afford it so I graduated debt free. I also cured myself of severe plantar fasciitis, generalized chronic pain, and back pain.

    Stared down a stalker and won.

    Saved a man from dying in the desert.

    Also left a very strict and closed-minded religion to find out what the rest of the world had to offer.

    • I did a double-take at this comment because for a heartbeat I thought I’d written it. I’m glad you overcame all of this. Inspiring job.

  169. I have acted on big ideas with cofidence and consistency despite being a mother raising four children alone. My writing business is taking off and i have cery modestly started investing in real estate to ensure my and my children’s future. I could have decided just to be a victim. But I am a survivor with big plans and a big heart!!

  170. My late husband used to tease that “it’s not bragging if you can do it!”

    I’m proud of how I’m coping with his death last year (the devastating loss of my heart, my hero), with trying to carry on (and actually improve) his company, with refusing to consider bankruptcy despite struggling with some $61k in debt (credit cards and last year’s corporate and personal taxes: alas, he had not managed our lives as I would have… but then, he wasn’t supposed to die!), and with keeping — most of the time — a reasonable and generally positive attitude.

    Ramit, your stuff has been amazingly helpful, and while I haven’t been able to start a side-biz yet (still recovering the MAIN biz!), I’m finally beginning to prepare for it.

    Oh, and I’m life-time proud that 22 years ago I qualified as the only woman tugmaster in the Philadelphia/Camden harbor (at the Navy Shipyard that used to be there)!

  171. 6 moths ago I could barely run 1 mile and yesterday I ran my first half-marathon!

  172. After several years of people encouraging me to share some of my written-for-fun articles, I submitted one for a magazine. It was accepted the first time and I got double the renumeration they typically give for a first submission. Got to check “published author” off my bucket list!

  173. I’m most proud of my two daughters. One is seven, the other just turned five.
    My childhood was spent in homelessness or just clinging to making it. Both of my parents had emotional and social problems, and my father was an addict.
    The problem with growing up rough is that you don’t know you have a choice to be better, because you’ve never seen better. And anything good you make for yourself either gets appropriated by others that see only their needs, or ruined because you don’t know how to foster it. So, there are a lot of trip-ups, setbacks, and unrealistic dreams that get crushed along the way. Then you grow up and have to teach yourself those life lessons you would’ve learned as a child. It’s tough work, but still a better lot in life than in much of the world.
    I didn’t have kids until my mid-thirties. I knew I wasn’t ready before then. I send them to private school at the expense of having my own car, or a nice vacation. They’re good kids, and so friendly and loving. Last week I walked them into school and watched them talking and laughing, and I couldn’t believe those two were my kids! How did that happen?! Who are these children?
    Things don’t last, but my love for them will.

  174. I have a super- power. As a private tutor, I transform kids from math- hating, chair- throwing, zero self- confidence monsters into focused, driven, A students. Last year, one grade five First Nation student went from 42% to 93% in six months. I just have to figure out how to transform their teachers, who are also math- haters, from being the source of the problem to something better.

    • This sounds really interesting and impressive. It would be great if you could describe your super-power a bit more. What is your “secret sauce”? I can imagine it has to do with finding a motivational common ground and build it up from there…. Or are you trying to find as much practical examples as possible? Or is it the combination of these with some more?

  175. I tend to over-commit myself. I say yes to things because I feel like I “should” do them. Well a couple weeks ago, I decided to be upfront and honest with someone about participating in an event I knew I didn’t have time for. I simply said I really don’t have the time for this right now. They were polite and very nice about the whole thing. And I think they appreciated my honesty instead of just pulling them along.

    Bottom line: I said no and I felt great after! :)

  176. I am proud to look back on my life and realize that I’ve done and accomplished most of the things I’ve set out to do. The ones that have been put on hold in my life are the results of a beautiful family that fills me with pride to the point of tears almost everyday.
    I have a supportive wife that has just agreed to join me in a new photographic pursuit.
    I am proud to say that I’m a 39 years old with 20 years of photographic experience. I am proud to have captured all the things in life through my lens.
    I am proud to be a photographer.
    I am most proud to be a husband & father.

  177. The most recent thing I am proud of is running my first full marathon. Then a few days afterward, I found out that I ran the darn thing while newly pregnant! Eek! No wonder I’m still starving and exhausted. =p

    On a side note, I have found it interesting hearing comments from coworkers and friends about my running a marathon. I know (most) people aren’t intentionally trying to be sexist, but many people–both men and women–assumed that I was running a 5K or a half marathon, when I distinctly said I was running a marathon. Who says they are running a marathon if they are actually doing a 5K? Doesn’t make sense to me. No one would question a man saying that he is running a marathon. Just because I am a young woman, and heck, just being a woman in general, my peers have made incorrect assumptions. Semi-rant over. =)

    Anyway, reading through everyone’s comments is very inspiring. I love that Ramit opened this “brag fest” up. Cheers, all!

  178. At 19 I felt I was too old to train to be an aerialist. At 25 I changed my mind, and have been performing for a living for the past 5 years- first dancing (not naked) to pay for lessons, and then as a soloist. The thing I am most proud of are the callouses on my hands.

  179. Last year I quit my high paying corporate job to travel the world for 1 year – by choice. It is one of the coolest things I’ve ever done. Not only did I learn a lot about the world, but also about myself.

  180. I quit my job and am able to make enough money to pay the bills by pursuing my passion: teaching others how easy it is to grow marijuana.

    Talk about a dream job.

  181. I’m preparing to add a p/t employee to my small business! I can’t believe that I’m here.. and just 2 years after leaving my f/t job. And that f/t job is now one of my clients! :-)

  182. I’m proud of how I got my current job. After being laid off in February and unemployed for 3 months, I crashed a job fair at Boston University (I just live in Boston, but am not a student). I walked right past all the sign-in tables and right into the room and started talking to recruiters. They all thought it was great that I was motivated to do whatever it takes to get a job.

    I’m proud that this even occurred to me, but I looked back on my own time in college and realized that whenever I went to job fairs, no one wanted to hire a student. They would say “oh great, get in touch with us in 6 months to a year.” I automatically had an advantage over every student in this place because not only was I able to start working as soon as possible, but I had EXPERIENCE.

    I met a recruiter whose cousin was looking for an IT guy and I interviewed 2 weeks later, and then started a month after that. This is my first stint in IT but I love it and started making $10k more than I did at my last job.

  183. I finished my PhD three years ago, and have been working at jobs since then that have been both personally and professionally rewarding. I might not have such a big income as a scientist, but I feel like what I do makes a difference.

  184. I am incredibly proud that at the age of 51, I am a law student. About 3 years ago I evicted a deadbeat spouse, got a divorce, and moved away from my hometown. Two years ago I left my secure job to come to law school with no money and lots of deadbeat spouse debt. I succeeded the 1L year and am halfway through my law school career right now. I am president of the Health Law Student Association and professors and fellow students like me.

  185. I’ve been tested (Mensa), and have an IQ of 152. Very few people know this, as I constantly play it low.

    I also kick some serious a** when I get behind a mixer console and make sure the best sound possible goes from the band to the audience.

    And I was born with additionnel fingers on both hands :)

  186. I’m proud of the fact that I am getting over social phobia and the fact that I have been able to push toxic people out of my life day by day, and bring in more success models

  187. After bouncing around my hometown doing a whole lot of nothing after high school I lost one of my best friends to drunk driving. I took this loss and my sadness and turned it into energy and focus toward the classes at the community college where I was enrolled. A year later (2007) I transferred to the highest ranked mechanical engineering program in my state. In 2010 I graduated with my BS and was recruited by one of the largest companies in the world into their engineering development program. Part of this program was to complete a masters degree at an even higher ranked engineering school than my undergrad institution. I completed this masters degree in August of 2012 without spending a cent of my own on tuition or books – without an employment contract,either :). Also, as of June I am solvent in terms of my cash on hand (emergency fund, and various goal based savings accounts) and my student loans from my undergrad.

  188. I am most proud of losing and keeping lost 80 pounds in the last year and a half. Doing so has significantly improved my cholesterol and glucose levels and also inspired my family to make changes in their own lives!

  189. I’ve lost 55 lbs after having 2 kids, ages 4 and 20 mos. I can’t believe my transformation. It feels great to make a commitment to myself, work my ass off and see it pay off!

  190. I have saved lives, raised children that are independent thinkers, but I am proud of my actions to simplify my life and become at peace inside. It was hard to begin. I used b j gift’s technique of hooking it to another behavior. When I get dressed, I remove one thing I have not worn in years. When I get a book to read from my shelves, I order it digitally and remove one I bought but have not used in months, eliminating two. I have too much and it paralyzed my decision making. Now I am making progress, my cable tv is off, I am more and more free, my coaching practice is growing. I won’t need go earn 1k now but will use that to retire on a boat and have more time for my aging parents.

  191. I am proud that I came to the US 15 years ago with an 8 month old daughter, got divorced becoming a single mom and put myself through college with NO DEBT while working full time. Graduated with honors and now earn 80K+ with a wonderful, amazing 16 year old daughter. I rock!

  192. I finished the Chicago Marathon when (almost) everyone said I shouldn’t attempt it – I am recovering from a stress fracture in my left lower femur. I finished (slowly) and achieved my fundraising goal, which was the reason for entering the marathon to begin with. My injury is no worse as a result. I do know my own body and its limitations and how far I can push it.

  193. Was able to take my wife and some of my best clients to the Grammy Awards last year and sit in a suite watching Adelle, Paul McCartney, Bruce Springstein, Lil Wayne and others. Surreal moment to spend with the people that make your lifestyle possible.

  194. I negotiated my way to a 40% salary increase at age 25. That put my salary exactly double what it was when I started at the organization 2 years prior. A huge early win has been such a boon to the rest of my career.

    I wouldn’t say it’s absolutely what I’m most proud of in life but for this blog, it’s worth bragging about..

  195. In 2011, I picked up and moved myself and my cat to Costa Rica. When I first arrived, I had no secure employment–just a handful of interviews and a serious “can do” attitude. I quickly found a job as a writer/social media marketer and spent a year exploring the country (when I could afford to) and writing. Then I came back home.

    When I tell people this story, their reaction is always, “Wow! That’s SO brave!” and I have a tendency to downplay that bravery. I guess I didn’t really think about it while it was happening.

    But it WAS brave. I am a brave chick.

  196. Two weeks before the end of the second year, I quit art school to start my own company. That was seven years ago. My cofounder left but I kept on plowing ahead and these days we are doing pretty well. I am 29 years now and employ 10 people. All without external funding or debt (other than occasional and manageable credit requirements).

    We provide dev services to other companies but this year we will launch our first product – almost 2 years in the making and completely self-funded. I hope that we can transform the business to a product dev company, with passive income.

    We are a well respected company in our field and we are working on great projects that impact lives.

    It has been very tough at times, but I am still standing and still healthy. I have learned a *lot* and am still learning every day. Another thing that makes me proud is that two employees have been with the company for over six years now. And that we get a lot of applications of people who want to be part of the team.

    I made the music for our upcoming product and people like it. I am also still involved in the creative work and that seems to go pretty okay, even though i don’t have too much time to spend on it.

    I’m still not completely satisfied but I think I did pretty well so far and hope to continue doing it!

    Thanks for this post by the way. Bragging is not in my nature (or culture) and it is easy to forget your own accomplishments. It helps to look back a bit and examine some of the things that went right :-) and very inspiring to read all these stories!

    Cheers,
    Derk

  197. I’m proud to be a single mother of 3 young children and I’m able to keep it together better then most of my 2 parent household friends. I own my own house and will debt free in 3 months! I will next tackle my house. I’m doing a lot better than my peers that have a spouse and dual incomes. For that I’m proud of myself!

  198. I have paid off my student loans and don’t have any credit card or auto debts.

  199. I’m proud of being “just” 21 years old and being ahead of most people my age.
    I know what I want to do with life; I’m currently getting a PhD in a field that I love, and I already have a retirement account and an automated savings system (Thank you, Ramit).

    Finally, I’m proud about the fact that I can actually stick to something when I put my mind to it and seldom quit halfway through.

    You are right, bragging feels GREAT. Thanks for the chance.

    Jose

  200. I am proud to had put love over everythin else when I was 18th. Now I’m still married with the love of my life. This may sound silly, but to be together, I had to leave the confort of my parents’ home and take care of my life. I had to work, and survive with practically no money or experience and eventually take care of my own college education. I did okay, even though now I would have done a lot of things differently.

  201. I worked at a law firm in high school during my 11th grade year. I was the top student in the class; however, growing up in South Central Los Angeles I didn’t know much about careers.

    Couple of my friends said that managers at in and out get paid $15 an hour and so I was thinking maybe I could get into that. One day as I was going through some paperwork I noticed how much some of these corporate lawyers were making. Many were making $700 an hour or more. I didn’t know anybody can make that much money. I was upset that I didn’t know there was a world where someone can make more than 20 bucks an hours.

    Since that day I went to the library and read books on getting into the best colleges. I received a full ride to attend UC Berkeley and then helped my brother get into Georgetown University on a full ride and also helped my sister also attend UC Berkeley on a full ride.

    I’m proud of helping my siblings get into amazing schools, and take the burden off my parents from having to pay or worry about their children’s future.

  202. I’m happy to have seized opportunities for public speaking and training others – and that independently of work, this is making a difference and helping others. I’m proud that I’ve stuck with a really challenging course. I’m proud to have discovered a talent for weightlifting – I can now lift more than my own body weight, and every week I’m getting stronger. I’m proud to have been there for my family during really difficult times. I’m also proud that I actually asked someone out.

  203. I am most proud of the fact that I am nearly done with my masters degree while working and building a successful and fulfilling relationship. It has taken more work, patience and thick skin than anything I’ve done before and I can’t wait for the next challenge!

  204. Before I was thirty I Had achieved a lot of my major goals. Ie travel, flat, wife etc without taking money from anyone

  205. I designed my own major, becoming Stanford’s first and only Behavior Design major, which gives me the academic freedom and lifestyle that I imagined for myself coming into college: taking any classes that I want.

    It’s also helping advance the field of behavior design.

  206. At this point in my life, I am most proud of myself for having the strength and foresight to move on after my step mom took her life. Not knowing how to view the world after an event like that scared me, but I did not give up on people. Since then I have found a new reason to drive forward and live how I want to live and be happy for myself and not for other people.

  207. I’m proud of my insight as a father. I’m proud that if all else fails in my parenting, my three boys will always know in the core of their being that they are loved. And that’s at least a good base from where to start.

  208. I’ve accepted a one-month internship in Beijing, China to pick up international business experience in the environmental field and exposure to a new culture and language. It will be quite an adventure during this period of unemployment and transition. Like Ramit says in FYDJ, it could take up to a year to find the right fit, and the contacts and experience I’ll make there will be invaluable.

  209. I’m most proud of the work we have done with my son, who was adopted three years ago. He is fluent in English, reading almost at grade level and his behavior has improved tremendously. Because of the high rate of suicide and the extremely dim prospects for abandoned children in his home country, I feel that I have made the world a better place by the love we have shown him, even though we’ve made lots of mistakes along the way. Of course, he has given us so much happiness and we thank God every day for bringing him into our lives.

  210. I moved to Washington DC in 2009 and New York in 2011 and got the first job I applied for.

    Once I started looking for new work in New York — I again got the first job I applied for.

  211. Personal: Kids that never stop impressing me with their achievements (A students with more extracurricular activities than I can track for the oldest two and the youngest is coming into a great sense of humor (he’s 3)).
    Professional: Broke from the corporate ranks about seven years ago; started four successful businesses that created 33 jobs and paid millions of dollars in wages to date. On track toward my goal of 10 recurring revenue businesses – five and six are underway!

  212. This is looooong, a bit woo-woo & almost all of you will go “God! How could you be so stupid”. So naturally i’m choosing anonymity here.

    THE FIRST PROUD PHASE
    Right out of college, I was slightly more money savvy than most of my female friends. While they shopped till they dropped & waited to be rescued by others, I diligently planned my finances even when my salary was laughable. Even on that small a salary, I brunched at the most lavish 5-star hotel in the city every fortnight & bought my self something – book or clothing – whatever took my fancy.

    I could do that because I’d put in some simple processes in place – something I had taught myself – of course working in a banking environment made it easier to acquire this knowledge. (Erm, Ramit, this was before you started blogging).

    Anyway, so as soon as my salary hit my account it would automatically be invested into some carefully chosen mutual funds (all gave me >45% returns over the next few yrs). My rent would be automatically transferred & I also had a automatic recurring deposit for a wedding. I’m Indian – we go a bit cuckoo on weddings – so its a good idea to save in advance.

    After all these auto investments, I allowed myself some spending/ entertainment money for the month. Sometimes after i’d had my fun, I would be left with Rs.2500 ($40-50) which I would put away in a “Who-knows-what-will-happen” account.

    As time went by, my salary doubled every 2-3 years, so naturally I started saving more. The “who-knows-what-will-happen” account had enough to sustain me for 2yrs for a slightly above average lifestyle. This was in addition to my other investments. Naturally, I was a proud girl.

    THE STUPID PHASE:
    I was seeing someone & we were planning to get married the next year. By now I had saved about $24,000 for my wedding, which in India is a sizable amount. In a turn of events the gentleman needed a large chunk of money to invest in his business. When he couldn’t pull together all of the money, he asked for my help. Knowing that we’d marry only a year later, I lent him the $24,000. (I can hear you guys singing ‘you’re so stupid’).

    Anyway, a few months down, I began to worry about it. And he felt like I was questioning his integrity. Things went sour. We went our separate ways. And I didn’t get the money back. Ever.

    THE BEGINNING OF A NEW PROUD PHASE:
    I had two choices after being cheated of my money. Wallow in self pity about how grand my life used to be. Or roll up my sleeves & get cracking again.

    I tried the former – let me just say – its really boring.

    So I set myself up as a consultant instead (didn’t want to do the corporate grind again). Its been a challenge, but the “who-knows-what-will-happen” money came very handy during this setup phase. Today, I’m well on my way to reaching my first goal of putting $24,000 back into my wedding account.

    I can’t say I’m proud to have been as stupid as I had been. But I think, sometimes we fail so we can pick ourselves up & do even greater things than we did before. And I just may be on that path.

    (p.s: really sorry for the long comment)

  213. At age 37, I moved to Atlanta in 1988. By 1999, I knew a big change was needed in my career. After doing some research, I quit my (decent but boring) job, and went back to school full time in 1990. I was the oldest student in my freshman class of 150 students! My proudest achievement is that I finished my ungrad degree, then went on to complete 2 masters degrees so that I could specialize in my field. I was 45 when I graduated, and have accomplished much in my career. More mountains to climb, but biting the bullet and jumping in with both feet at 38 was a big undertaking. And, one opportunity I will eternally be grateful for. It was life changing!

  214. My age, especially with respect to my “jack-of-all-trades” accomplishments. I’m 21, graduating with a Master’s degree in theology, I have reached the top 24 in international filmmaking competitions, I play guitar, bass, drums, banjo, and I’m a black belt and instructor in taekwondo. There are lots of things I don’t do at all – playing team sports or such things – but I’m particularly proud of excellently performing at the things that I do enjoy.

  215. I developed a barefoot dress shoe called the Primal Professional and raised $13K in pre-orders during a crowdfunding campaign last fall. We’re heading into production now and I’d love to hook you up with a pair, Ramit!

  216. Learning to influence other people by building relationships with them – apparently dictatorship is out of fashion!

  217. I graduated high school in three years, college in three years, and I’m currently working on my Master’s degree. I’ve also reached an Army promotion in four years that takes most people 6+ years to get. But the thing I’m most proud of is being able to provide for my family and allow my wife to stay home with our two boys (actually, my wife is giving birth to our second son today!).

  218. Last week, one of my former high school students walked up to me and told me that I had changed his life. I asked him how and he went on to tell me about the tips and strategies that I often shared (outside of my world history curriculum) about goal setting, habits and breaking through your fears (THANKS RAMIT) which allowed him to make the changes necessary to go from a 2.0 student to getting a 4.0 this year.

  219. I’m proud that I dropped out of college because I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I am making more money that I ever would have with a degree, broke 100 grand a year before I hit 29. I plan on going back to college at some point…I’ll major in wine tasting, if they offer it.

  220. A year this coming December I joined a Crossfit box, in order to get into shape for the military. When I joined I was roughly, 98 lbs and vegetarian and couldn’t do a single push up or pull up. Now at 114 lbs. and no longer a vegetarian (bacon is awesome) I can do push ups and pullups. Last week, I did 155 lbs. deadlift.

    I’m amazed at the accomplishments I’ve made and the things I’ve been able to do.

  221. Quitting my job at a cube farm to become a full-time freelancer. The first time I went on vacation after quitting my job, I worked my butt off to get ahead on projects and get everything in order to be out of the country for two weeks. But NOT having to ask anyone’s permission to used my allotted vacation time was THE BEST FEELING EVER. And spending two weeks in NYC soon after, fitting work around my fun, was equally amazing. I’m really proud that I can do that stuff now.

    Unfortunately, everyone thinks what I do is an easy gig and/or that my husband supports me (both not true). Oh well!

  222. Hi Ramit,

    I am proud of my excellent financial planning. I graduated from college this past December, was employed at a job I love by February, have bought a car, am paying off my student loans, am 100% financially independent from my parents now, and am able to take a 10 day trip to Scotland in a month – all on a $40,000 salary with no debt exepting a small car loan mostly for the purposes of raising my credit score. How do I do this all? I read your book :)

  223. I’m proud of myself for finally getting started doing the work I want to do – helping women who are stressed or burnt out rediscover their inner Goddesses. For so long I’ve been going in circles, doing courses that were vaguely related to my dream to get more qualifications, or trying to find other things because I was worried about sounding ‘woo woo’ or ‘cooky’ rather than just getting started.

    Now I’ve started – last week I booked a four session package with my first client, I’ve signed up another two this week, and next month I’m doing my first group workshop!

    Times are changing :)

  224. I’m most proud of the fact that even though I still deem my 20′s a complete and utter f*** up, as a DJ who’s not really doing what all other (female) DJ’s do (produce tracks, subject yourself to being overly objectified in all possible advertising). I STILL somehow got booked to go DJ in Russia for a handsome sum in comparison to what I normally get in London after hustling every damn promoter I know who doesn’t ask for a rent-a-crowd when I’m offering my DJ services. We’re talking: flights, transport, visa, hotel and pay.

    And it’s not just once. From the initial “Yes” I gave them, I’ve been booked 3 times over there and I still can’t believe it.

  225. At a recent company event, I managed to approach both the CEO and the head of my division. I even left the latter sincerely entertained with some software ideas!

  226. I’m proud that I’ve gone from zero to professional photographer in about three years, giving myself raises and hiring employees as assistants. I’m proud that I now charge $3,250 per wedding and people are happy to pay it. I like my work.

    Five years ago when I was substitute teaching I taught myself (with instructions) how to solve the Rubik’s Cube. Then I obsessed until I got my time down to 30 seconds. I can solve the Rubik’s Cube in 30 seconds almost every time now. (best time 00:17!)

    I’m proud that I make more hourly than all of my friends I know. (except maybe Ryan Q?) I’m proud to say I’ve traveled to a different country every year for the past 9 years.

    That’s it for now.

  227. A couple years back I got knocked down pretty hard when a rouge employee in my company cost me millions (personally), and all but sunk my company. I fought hard, and managed carefully, and climbed back, managing the relationships and agreements with everyone, and today 4 years later have recovered from that disaster. Without that drive and determination, a lot of families and lives would have been dramatically different in a very negative way. Defintely proud to have taken my way and approach when everyone around me told me to give up.

  228. I’m really proud of having an amazing relationship and I’ve just landed a job at a very desirable company thanks to your free dream job advice. Cc debt meant I couldn’t join.

  229. Doesn’t seem worth bragging about, because it’s one of those incredibly difficult things that other people don’t know how difficult it is. But I am sometimes surprised to look back and realize that I published not one, but several, science fiction short stories for pay, and I’m not talking about a penny a word pay, at a time when the market for short stories was almost gone. So I don’t know how much merit that there was in bucking market trends, but in my generation (or younger) a lot more people have successfully jumped out of airplanes than have sold science fiction to a traditional magazine AND GOT PAID.

  230. I started a brand new division of our company 2 years ago and have just brought on my third employee and am about to bring on a salesperson. I’m proud to say that we achieved profitability in about 12-15 months and are continuing to grow.

    The new service we provide was not even on the radar for anything the company had done before, so it has been a very rewarding experience to be a critical part of the business within just 2 years.

    I am very grateful for the opportunity I was given by my parents (the owners) to pursue this idea.

  231. I’d have to say I’m proud of completing Level 4 training materials within the given time frame and receiving kudos from someone that I respect about my attention to detail. I enjoyed it and am ready to take this act to my next employer since it’s iffy, at best, where I am. Feeling extremely good about my education choices. I was having a little doubt but feeling blessed right now!

  232. I was the girl everyone thought would stay in her hometown. Maybe get married right out of college. Instead, I moved to NYC with just enough savings to scrape by and made it on 25k a year for the first two years – including paying off my student loan.

    I’m a creative freelancer and have successfully worked as a video editor and travel writer. I left NYC 11 years later making about $500 a day, have great savings, no debt whatsoever, and work from home and take care of my 10 month old.

  233. I had a vision of building the first high-elevation greenroof in Washington D.C. and then raised 70K to do it—on K STREET! This project not only created my greenroof company and led us to building hundreds of thousands of square feet in greenroof across the metro region, saving millions and millions of gallons of polluted stormwater from reaching the Chesapeake, but it also started a movement that now has D.C. as the number #2 city for most greenroofs in the nation, behind Chicago. Oh, and I did it as a woman exec working in the construction trade “old boy network.”

    I could die tomorrow very satisfied, but I left the company and am up to other things now. :)

  234. I emigrated to Australia when I was 41 with two children, aged 3 and 4, after my divorce. I finished my PhD and raised my children single-handedly, with no assistance of any kind from their father. My children are now both very successful in their respective fields, happy, well-balanced and with many good friends. Both have travelled extensively, as well. I have now taken early retirement from my academic job and am going to start my own art business. I know now that I can face whatever life throws at me, and that there is always a way to solve every problem. I have also learnt that we can survive and be very happy on much less than we are led to believe. And, as my great-aunt used to say, ‘Comparisons are odious’: don’t spend your life comparing yourself to others; just be grateful for what you’ve got (the sun in the morning and the moon at night..).

  235. I’m going to spend the next 12 months travelling from Canada, all the way down to the South Pole, meeting a load of entrepreneurs I look forward to chatting to along the way. All the while running my online business remotely.

  236. I’m proud that I’ve worked on projects with some of the best entertainment companies in the world such as Warner Brothers, DreamWorks, Mtv, Comedy Central and so many more.

  237. Funny, I would normally have said – educating myself and creating a career in online marketing for myself from books, websites, and online courses. And in being close to the launch of two of my websites.

    But- I had an experience last spring that I would say used all of my skills and more while showing me me truly how hard I can push to make something happen. Our dog was stolen off our private back deck and put in a waiting car. My husband and I were devastated and I proceeded to unleash my fury in an almost amber alert via social media/online resources. The city of Milwaukee ran with it and in under 18 days we had 4,000 fliers, tons of radio stations, restaurants, and small businesses sharing and pledging rewards. It worked- 3 weeks later – our sweet dog was returned to us anonymously early one Sunday morning – he was left on the lawn of the church next door. Everyone told us that we would never see him again but we used all of our resources and marketing skills to make it happen. That, is a very proud and humbling moment for me.

    It also taught me just how hard you can push when you really believe in a goal and refuse to listen to people telling you it will never happen.

  238. I graduated in 2006 making 62.5K a year. Six years later I have doubled my salary to 106K before I’m even near 30. Glad I can brag about this somewhere because it definitely wouldn’t be appreciated among friends or associates that don’t make anywhere near that.

  239. The thing I am most proud of is overcoming a personal fear.

    2 months ago I was floundering looking for direction. On a whim I responded to a post on Facebook about recording audio and they challenged me to record an audio. I took 20 minutes to talk about answering the call of opportunity.

    Long story short – I sent the audio to a few people I trust. Within two days I got a call to speak at a seminar in Las Vegas (which I was unable to attend due to j.o.b.) However, it blew up my confidence and I am currently creating a 97.00 audio product where I also have 20 interviews with top online marketers.

    It’s been amazing! Most importantly – I feel alive.

  240. I published the first book of its kind in the history of Mexico! I’d moved down there not knowing Spanish and with no contacts, found myself taking photos for the first time in my life, dedicated a few years to doing it and put out the book – to rave reviews! I’ve shown over 50 times in the last several years, had over 20 articles come out about me in the newspapers, appeared on radio and television dozens of times and had a two hour live tv & radio show dedicated to me and my photography, seen by hundreds of thousands of viewers. We showed my most recent photographic project in 20 different places, all within about a month, nobody had every done anything like it, insane! Since the first day, I’ve come up against numerous obstacles living in a foreign culture, but I NEVER GAVE UP! And know the book’s finally on sale at Amazon (http://amzn.com/6070048024) Feels great!

  241. Paying cash for everything i own. serving 5 years in the us army

  242. I bought a house, by myself, at 26 in a major metropolitan area. I didn’t have to rely on anyone else for funding.

    I still don’t need to rely on anyone else. I love it.

  243. Dancing my Ph.D. and winning a trip to see it presented at TEDx Brussels!
    http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2012/10/dance-your-phd-and-the-winner-is.html

    Setting up a crowd funding project to complete an atom microscope that will revolutionize biomedical research:
    http://www.indiegogo.com/atom-microscope

  244. I am 25, own my own condo, and have enough money in the bank I could not work for a year and comfortably live and make all my mortgage/bills. Now to take care of those things I have neglected, find a relationship, lose weight, and find that dream job!

  245. Short and simple – I am mom to six young people, I work part-time, I go to school full-time, I homeschool my children, my son went through cancer treatment for 3 1/2 years starting when he was four, I have had to protect my family from my mom and dad (nuf details an that one). We have overcome! Despite the trials, my family is amazing, my husband is amazing, and my children are amazing! That was a years’ worth of info in a paragraph.

    Dawn Gaylor

  246. Getting a Ph.D. while I was a single mom.

  247. Brag—well I can say that, before coming to graduate school, I was able to pay off my undergrad loans–now that my loans r astronomical lol I don’t know if its that much of an achievement but I’m proud.

  248. [...] under 1,800 graduates). ….. It's a good idea to focus on the positive. … More: What's one thing you're most proud of? | I Will Teach You To Be Rich ← This Too Shall Pass: Tips to Boost Sagging Credit [...]

  249. I will be graduating college in 1 semester with a BA in finance. I’m 21 and landed an internship in DC at a top financial company. I’m feeling pretty blessed and through it all I’m so proud that I know I deserve this!

  250. I lost a total of 29.5lbs in the last 40 days :) Also I was featured in my local newspaper for my business. I started a religious clothing line where each shirt sold equals one meal the homeless.

  251. I am very proud of working for multiple start-ups and making them successful. Proud because each venture was taken from zero to profits, with several challenges on the way. My innate creative instincts and “fighting spirit” are things that made it possible and I am proud of these competencies in me.

  252. I was a teen dad and high-school dropout who managed to overcome everything thrown my way and work for 2 startups, found my own, and become partner at a 4th.

  253. I got accepted to my first choice University, the University of Rochester, through the Early Decision process. This had been my main goal throughout High School and because my Mom works for the University (and has for many INCREDIBLY HARD WORKING YEARS), the Medical Center pays for 100% of my tuition. I also was the President of my High School for my Junior and Senior year, and I was the first person to win/run as a Sophomore to be President as a Junior. I then continued this trend and had a “hat trick” because I was recently elected President of the class of 2016 student council at UR. Now I’m trying to become an RA so I can graduate with absolutely no debt! It’s been a good couple years and I’m trying to keep the forward momentum!

  254. I have severe health problems. Despite these, I graduated with a 3.48 GPA from an Ivy League college, and gained admission to, and graduated from, a top ten law school. I passed two bar exams and worked as an attorney for a few years before my health problems became more severe. Although I am currently receiving disability benefits, I work part-time, as allowed by the disability benefit–but I am not making much. My goal is to return to full-time employment and get off disability.

  255. I’m proud that I got my bachelor’s degree at the age of 19 last March without any support from my parents financially for my education for 4yrs; It’s because I got a scholarship grant that pays for my tuition and miscellaneous and was giving me a monthly allowance. Now, I’m working and is supporting my siblings for their education.

  256. I’m proud of my blog and podcast on the theme, Does This Happen to You, produced weekly.

  257. I quit grad school pretty quickly upon realizing it was, for many reasons, the wrong path, even though I didn’t have a well-formed backup plan. I’ve spent the past year investing in myself and making ends meet and am much better for it – especially considering what an additional year of grad school would (not) have done for me.

  258. I’m proud that I have always tried not to let being Asian and having really traditional Asian parents get me down in terms of what I want to achieve in life. I’ve worked and lived in Canada and Japan, and am now working for a non-profit organisation, and want to continue making life decisions that have meaning, rather than money in them.

  259. Just paid off two credit cards and will have the last one paid off by new year.

  260. In late 2010, I had a breaking point and wanted to change my life. I was lazy and out of shape. I hated my job. Hated my life. Wanted to find something I enjoyed doing and get paid for it. For many years I’ve tried all kinds of money making opportunities online but failed.

    This time I was going to take action and not stop till I achieved my goals. I had an idea for an iPhone app but had no idea how to write code. I thought I would need to learn. I looked through books or took online courses but found it hard. Also I probably would have to spend years to get good at it.

    I can across a blog that talked about outsourcing. I had no idea someone could outsource iPhone app development. This was my chance.

    I bought an ebook to help get me started cause i had no idea how to develop or outsource an app. Found a great team. Seven months later my app, Photo 365, was ready to be sold.

    I didn’t know what to expect. Just hoped I’d make my $1900 back. The first weekend I did around $1000 already! Couldn’t believe it. After the weekend sales went down considerably. Thought that would be the end of it and my app would get lost in the App Store.

    The next week I got featured on the front page of the App Store under New and Noteworthy!! Sales shot way up. That next week I got an email from Apple marketing asking for some art assets. They couldn’t promise they would use it. Got it together in 19 hrs with help from my brother. I anxiously waited on Thursday, since that is when the featured apps are changed, to see if they used it.

    Looked and saw my app was App of the Week!! That’s the app lottery. The ultimate endorsement from Apple. Usually it’s big companies with huge budgets that get featured. I’m a guy who outsourced my app to the Ukraine. Every day that week felt like Christmas to me. I couldn’t wait to sleep and couldn’t wait to wake up to check my sales. After that week I was featured at different times all around the world as App of the week.

    All this happened in less than a month. I still can’t believe it as I type this. My first 30 days, I did about $30,000 in sales from a 99 cent app. It allowed me to create my own company where I’m developing more apps. If you want to see my app, Photo 365, that was featured go to my blog. Don’t want to add links in case it’s not cool.

    Thanks for letting me brag the coolest thing that’s ever happened to me so far!

    • Sorry meant to say proud. Yes it was very cool but I’m proud because I took a chance and developed an app. This was way out of my comfort zone and was a lot of money to risk.

    • For whatever random reason, this response caught my eye and I read it all the way through. The most interesting part of it all is that you spent 1 paragraph on the negative and the rest on positivity. Very encouraging and uplifting. You’ve inspired me to do something similar!

      Congratulations and Good Luck on your future endeavors Benny!

  261. I’m most proud of the fact that I broke my div. I college soccer records for all time career goals, game winning goals, and points. (UC Irvine)

  262. I’ve lost 130 pounds and am now a certified fitness instructor!
    I’m the first college graduate in my family.

  263. In preschool/kindergarten, I was diagnosed with low-functioning Asberger’s and didn’t have the mental capacity to make it socially or academically past the seventh grade. Various psychologists throughout my elementary school career reaffirmed the diagnosis. No teacher that I had noticed me or gave me a chance to succeed until 6th grade. My 6th grade teachers thought that the previous diagnoses were wrong. They gave me a chance to demonstrate that I wasn’t stupid and could function in society. From the one chance they gave me, I got moved out of special education, and into the gifted program. I won state tournaments in speech and debate, earned state and regional titles in Academic Games, and graduated high school 5th in a class of 620. After that I moved on to graduate college with 3.8 in computer science and math. Upon graduating 4 months ago, I now have $90k job doing what I love everyday at one of the world’s most customer-centric companies.

    Back to the point. What am I most proud of? I’m most proud of owning what other people said I could never have: a life.

    • Damn! This easily trumps my 3. Kudos for your amazing accomplishments. And if you wouldn’t mind me asking, what is it that you do for work?

    • Eric, this is fantastic!!! Very inspiring. Congratulations, and thanks for sharing!

  264. I went through high school believing it was a complete and total waste of time. I took the time to learn what I enjoyed and didn’t bother doing any homework. I failed two courses and had mediocre grades otherwise, but did manage to graduate.

    I graduated feeling as though I would never be able to do what I really wanted to do in life. I worked on my own projects for a year without really seeing the value in them, as they were just “for fun.” I then worked at a mediocre job for two years and hated it, too exhausted to really engage in those projects that I had enjoyed.

    One day I decided that I wanted to succeed. I applied for and got into University and worked my ass off. I received one scholarship after another, made several summer work placements in my target field with kick ass performance evaluations and results people hadn’t seen before. I am now graduating as one of the top students in my class with multiple job offers – every single one of them under the category of “dream job.”

  265. I am proud that I attained a black belt in taekwondo, that I have several photos on book covers (but I want more!), and that I am still DJIng after 10+ years and love that I can still find new music that I love, and not just stay listening to the same old music from decades past.

  266. Negotiated a 23% raise after being told that merit raises above 8-10% could NOT be done at my organization (huge, bureaucratic university). Oh, and I got a better title and managerial responsibilities too. Second promotion in 2 years, thanks to Ramit’s book and blog.

    As Ramit suggests, I built up to that salary negotiation by negotiating other things, like $100 off my rent last year. Can’t wait to negotiate my rent again this year!

  267. I’m proud for:

    1. Passing the CPA exam without ever failing a section while working full time

    2. Winning my Toastmasters Evaluation Contest and getting mentoring from a Previous World Champion of Public Speaking

    3. The fact that my little sister still looks up to me

    4. Taking initiative by having a conversation with a famous person I admire when I was totally nervous (as well as asking the prettiest girl to dance despite coming alone)

    5. Swimming in front of my 9th grade class even though I didn’t know how to swim and was my #1 fear

    6. Memorizing Mozart’s Rondo a la Turk on the piano in 1 day (and learning more advanced music despite my “inexperience”). I’m also proud that I create my own music and other people will stop their plans to just listen to me

    7. Being the guy in my group of friends that brings our group together again

    8. Getting the job I wanted during November 2009 when the market crashed

    9. Working on high profile work projects despite my “inexperience” in my field

    10. Pursuing (and paying for) personal development on my own despite friends/family indifference

    11. Being voted in the 5th grade to give a speech in front of the entire class despite being the new kid

    12. Having the bravery to Share my Personal Story in a theater of strangers

    13. Being voted the best trainer and consistently “engaged” and “enthusiastic”

    14. Bringing my hobbies at work by starting a ping-pong league and now having over 80 people in it. Somebody told me, “I used to take coffee breaks, now, I take ping-pong breaks”

    15. Sticking with my commitment of going gluten free for 1 year

  268. I moved to India with the dream of starting my own online business. I now do social media and online marketing for small businesses. I also have 6 people working for me and we are making things happen for my clients. It has been hard work, but so worth it.

  269. Paying off my student loans WAY ahead of schedule, and my (ever-growing) 403b and Roth IRA accounts. My peers are still paying off debt and “waiting” to start contributing – and it makes me feel so good to be so financially secure, 100% debt free. Thanks Ramit for the IWTYTBR book – I read almost two years ago, but the automation systems and principals remain intact!

  270. I am most proud of:
    1) Studying hard for a bachelor’s degree (which was not a requirement for the well-paying but extremely stressful job I had at the time). I stayed on track in my program and made excellent grades while working, supporting family members financially & dealing with a range of stressful life events (like getting my car stolen).

    2) Making major moves that have greatly expanded my life opportunities. Moved to the US for college, then from my small college town to a major West Coast city, and later to a new college town in the South. I’ve been pro-active about seeking opportunities outside my comfort zone, rather than following the traditional path that most of my peers took. These experiences have enriched my life. I am now looking at moving to an East Coast city for grad school and better social & career opportunities.

    3) Applying lessons from Ramit’s book (like automating finances). Results include: a) Paying off major debt. b) Raising my credit score by >100 points. c) A financial cushion that allowed me to quit jobs that stifled me. So liberating! d) Saving & paying cash for major financial purchases. e) Living a rich life (still working on this)

    4) Planning & hosting a successful fundraiser on a shoe-string budget for a non-profit I’m passionate about. I reached out to volunteers, businesses & many people in my community to make it happen, despite being an introvert with zero experience in this arena. It’s an amazing feeling to be part of something that makes people’s lives better.

  271. I have saved $2,000 for my Emergency Fund. This is the most I have ever saved and I am excited to have stuck to my savings plan and made it to this milestone so far this year. My goal is $3,000 by year end and to save another $5,000 in 2013. Yay me!

  272. 1. Selling $30,000 worth of artwork just before I turned 23. For a while I thought “Most People” have these skills and could do this (sell 30K of anything), and now I’m starting to realize how rare it might actually be.
    2. Being fucking proud of myself for what results I’ve been able to achieve. In high school I despised myself because I never fit in with “Most People.” I was born very creative and by 8 – 9th grade I felt school was just a distraction getting in the way of my creativity. I graduated high school but only did the bare minimum.

  273. Proud to be living at home! Although I am not currently living the city life of a 20 something year old I’m savoring the end of each month where I take 75% of my income and put it towards paying down my student and car loans, my Roth IRA, and saving to travel!

  274. I’m proud of the following:

    No debt – even mortgage is paid off.

    I have travelled across the world by bike.

    I have developed exceptional IT skills which has allowed me to find work that interests me.

  275. I started a side business with 2 friends in an attempt to become employment independent and get out of the daily grind.

    With minimal hours and full time jobs we’re on our way to 6 figures in sales in our first year.

    It has broken down many barriers I had with starting a business and now I feel like there is almost no limits on what I think is possible.

    Thanks for the brag.
    Skye

  276. I am proud of being an educator with some great ideas in education!!
    Need to find guys who will listen to me and share their ideas of building a better world!!

  277. I plan conferences for a non profit organization. My proudest moment was when I figured out how to create new categories for onsite registration information in our database so I could track onsite revenue and attendance vs pre-registration. The CPA who worked for the org for eight years and who *built* the database didn’t figure this out, but I DID!

  278. It is intriguing that we all know that we love to brag about ourselves and yet we never master the art of doing in a way that is profitable.

    If anything, our efforts to impress actually repel people.

    But there’s a way to go about fixing this problem when you’re meeting someone for the very first time and they ask you, “What do you do? The way to captivate another person’s mind is with . . .

    The Champion-Level Elevator Pitch Formula

    Your elevator pitch, your answer to, “What do you do?” should never be boring or confusing.

    “I’m an accountant” is boring. You may think you’re impressing people but you’re not.

    And if you try to get all fancy pants on people and say, “I institute financial parameters, analytics and analysis for businesses” then you end up confusing people and the this leads you to start pre-framing what you’re about to say with, “It’s really tough to explain.”

    The perspective that gets you off on the right foot is to interpret the question of, “What do you do?” as “How do you help people?”

    Just this one re-frame will massively transform how compelling your answer is to this question and allow your bragging to come in under the radar.

    An Elevator Pitch Should Have Nothing To Do With Why You’re Doing What You’re Doing Or How You Do It

    You want your elevator pitch to be about the people you can serve best i.e. your perfect prospect. So a simple way to get to this is . . . “The problem I solve is X .”

    You want to avoid bragging about the whole process of what you do. No one cares how you do what you do. They don’t want to hear about the labor pains. They just want to see the baby i.e. the problem that you solve – the results you’ve produced.

    One thing to keep in mind is that your personal mission is different than your “how do you help people” statement. Your personal mission is why you’re in the game you’re in.

    This is your marketing message and your marketing message is the gate. People don’t need to hear about the stealth transformation process you use beyond the gate until they’ve actually walked through.

    Now here’s the first framework for how to build the most inviting gate possible…

    “You know how some people have X problem? (Pause and wait for them to answer) Well I offer a solution for this problem.”

    One example of this is, “You know how most coaches and consultants are really great at what they do but they suck at getting clients? Well, what I do is teach coaches and consultants a system that allows them to make a six figure income in their business with as little or many clients as they want without compromising their values.”

    Notice how it wouldn’t even be hard for a complete outsider to understand the problem you solve and how the perfect prospect for this service would be salivating at hearing this?

    Well, this is the difference between bragging that offends or confuses and bragging that is welcomed and profitable.

    • Right on Lewis!

      I just got back from Europe where I worked with one the most important festivals of the entire year (& one of the most important in the world) and the young talents were constantly working on pitches for their new film projects.

      Since I was surrounded by these incredible talents and I decided to work extremely hard developing and mastering a 60 second pitch and 9 minute pitch as well, which everyone knows is quite a challenge! Part of the challenge is to share just how TOTALLY KICK ASS you are without sounding like your BRAGGING, right? And, how to engage the listener.

      Your advice has helped me do just that! To REALLY engage the listener, which is KEY.

      Thanks!

      All the best,
      Marshall

  279. I constructed my own residential house to get rid of landlords pressures.

  280. Other than graduating college and practically being a work machine, my moments of proud are silly. They’re genuinely silly.

    Back in high school and a few times in college, I was told by several of my teachers that they looked forward to reading my assignments as I always threw in some humor as a way of saying, “Yes, I know what you’re looking for and the same stuff must get boring to read, so how about I create a parody that gives you what you’re looking for? Or maybe just say something completely crazy and honest?”

    I wrote, after a teacher had said it couldn’t be done, a sonnet about KFC. Still have it laying around somewhere. She liked it.

    I was told that I was the next Maureen Dowd.

    I’ve been told by some guy that I barely knew that he could see my writing being published as he enjoyed what I wrote just that much.

    Perhaps these last two points are the silliest to be proud of, but am proud of none the less.

    Again, high school, my sociology course took an informal poll of who had cheated on a test at one point in time. Honest to goodness, I was the only one who hadn’t, unless someone was lying. Why lie about that though?

    And again, high school for my last one. My sophomore English teacher asked me to pick someone’s bag up and toss it out the window as a form of a social experiment. He expected me to actually attempt to do it just like the people he picked on for all the other classes did. I told him to do it himself (those exact words). As soon as he told me about it being an experiment, I felt rather good about myself, like I had passed a morality test.

    True, none of these moments involve serious work accomplishments like most of the other comments here. And pretty much all of these were accomplished almost a decade ago.

    But so what? I can still be proud.

  281. Been working on wordpress plugin for 2 years, without budget and internet marketing expertise, just an idea;

    finally got a JV partner that will push it to the market,

    thanks for the brag,feels lighter ;

  282. I’ve had an internship in totally new place, teaching children and making social impact in China

  283. I am proud to be free from credit card debt.

  284. I’ve had Cronic Fatigue for over 4 years, often can barely move… but I’ve taken the few days I can think clearly to learn Django (web app development) and keep improving my business skills, so when I’m finally well enough, I’m ready to launch off into consulting and SaaS.

  285. I was the first member of my family to attend college and I paid for it by myself, I have traveled all over the world, my husband and I are debt-free, I was determined to have a natural birth without pain meds and I made it through, and though I am far from perfect, so far I’m a good mom.

  286. Starting a 501(c)3 to provide a scholarship and crisis grants to former Disney characters as a way to say thank you to the many people that helped me get through college.

  287. I lived with my in-laws who treated me with no respect as I don’t fit the bill of the religious community they belong to. When my husband,my 3 month old daughter n I shifted to this new place of our own. I was weary of how im goin to handle it. However, today just two months from the moving I consider myself successfull as I have all the aspects which are under my purview perfectly in control. Im absolutely proud of myself.

  288. I know I’m super late to the party, but I passed my comprehensive exams to PhD candidacy while running a business with two of my best friends (we grossed over $20,000), and training for a triathlon. It was crazy because the candidacy exams and the business (which was centered around a conference) occurred during the same week. I got so little sleep that on the drive back to my school, I was pulled over for driving drunk, when, in fact, I was just extremely tired. Needless to say, I am extremely happy that I got through it and I am alive to tell the story.

  289. I resigned from work to pursue what I love doing. Writing. :D

  290. I guess the point of this exercise is to find if people have similar interests or it may actually be JUST about bragging. So here we go – I’ve been lucky enough to travel, visit, live and study in various countries – Singapore, Kuwait, India, some cities in the US and the UK and a few more. And by study, I mean not just education but also the people and the culture, the ins and outs and so naturally I love to teach and spread cultural values. If that isn’t good enough, I get most local references from most parts of the world. I am a semi-pro footballer (soccer) and a Mixed Martial Artist. I am proficient in 6 languages. I have expertise in Human Genomics, Geographical Profiling, CSI and Human Psychology. Now I am learning the start-up business game and would love to be an entrepreneur. Oh and I’ve eaten cuisines from about 27 countries (not that I was counting).

  291. One of the things I am most proud of in my life is attending and graduating from my first-choice college with NO DEBT. It is something I am immensely grateful for every single day and it was well-earned. I have told almost no one about this since I have encountered great jealousy and animosity about it from the few I have told, so thank you for providing this platform where we can anonymously brag about our accomplishments! I’m living proof that you can go to college and graduate without mountains of debt the old-fashioned way: working your freaking butt off. Believe me, it’s more than worth it and it’s something you will be proud of for the rest of your life.

  292. I recently quit my job and am beginning a training to become a certified life coach — I don’t know what the future holds, I don’t currently have a source of income, but I’ve never been more excited.

  293. I created something out of nothing. I left law school two years ago without a plan, just a vague idea that teaching the LSAT would be a better career move.

    Since then I’ve earned a decent amount of passive income(!) from writing LSAT explanations, built a local teaching and consulting business, published a book, and joined a startup that makes an online LSAT course.

    I’m proud to have shown that you don’t always need a plan, you just need to know what the right direction is and move that way.

  294. As a jeweler I have built my brand with key products that customers love and that have become my classics. I add new products to my line based on customer response. Your customers will give you the best ideas if you listen.

    It is very rewarding to have my jewelry recognized by someone. It is even better to love what I do.

  295. I have built a team of workhorses. I’ve been leading a student group at my University since I was a freshman. Now, as a senior, we have gone from doing mediocre work in front of mediocre audiences to doing professional-level work in front of giant crowds. Better than the results, however, are the meetings. I worked with two freshmen yesterday from 6 pm to 1:30 am. Not only are we wildly successful, but these kids want more! This group has taught me that I need to be in the entrepreneurial sector when I graduate so that I can keep building incredible things like this. It’s the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done in my life.

  296. My brag? I proposed a single, obvious (to me) life-saving addition to State Code, against an entire industry shouting about prohibitive cost. And today, it’s not only State law, it has been adopted by the Feds.

    And I defied the industry experts who assured me that it was a matter of WHEN, not IF, someone would perish on one of my jobs (because that’s what happened in all the other companies), and no worker came close, in over 12 years.

  297. I was recently asked, for the second time, to marry two close friends of mine. It was a great feeling to know that people think highly enough of me to offer me that honor. Gives my self-esteem a little shot in the arm.

  298. I achieved all the goals I set out for myself in University within 3 years of graduating:

    - Get a high paying marketing job I love
    - Own a house
    - 2 Cars
    - get an awesome girlfriend (now fiance)
    - World Travel

  299. I was accepted to LSE for a study abroad program.

    I competed in an olympic size pool (something i never thouht i wud be able to do)

    I am the only woman in a totally male dominated office, and i get my shit done.

  300. That I manage both to be a mother of two kids and still have a career.

  301. I rid myself of more than $60,000 in student loan debt and paid off my car in the past two years, while growing my 401K and savings accounts from where they were two years ago. My credit cards are paid off monthly and generate rewards, and my only long-term debt is a mortgage that is well below my means. It’s exciting to look at my finances now and see the good numbers going up and the bad ones going down and/or disappeared.

  302. I completed the Monaco Half Iron Man, including swimming over a mile in the Mediterranean Sea, climbing 16 miles out of Monaco and climbing three 8% grade hills in the middle. Topped it off by running around the Formula One race track five times for a total of 13.2 miles! Phew! 70.3 miles in 7hrs, 45 mins.

  303. So many things, but if I had to pick just one it would be the fact I overcame my fear of public speaking just in time to pull off a cracking seminar in front of a lecture theatre full of classmates, lecturers and industry professionals at university. I suffer from intense social anxiety at times and public speaking used to be my nemesis, but during this presentation I remember I was so relaxed I started enjoying myself and got a few laughs out of the audience. It took countless hours of training, but I successfully got over my fears. I was even given an A+ for it! Later when I was in my first graduate job (I was an engineer) a really fun presentation I did with my colleague grabbed the attention of a particular manager, who later poached me for his department. It didn’t work out in the end as this new role didn’t suit me, but I recognised the fact I was given a chance to try something new. :-)

  304. I’m most proud of going from not being able to swim 10m in a pool & being scared of swimming in ocean if I couldn’t touch the bottom. To being able to complete the 1.9km swim section of a half ironman within cutoff time. (I completed the of the half ironman)

  305. The 1 thing I am most proud of is that I started a chain of accountability with a friend and over the past three months I have accomplish more than I have in the whole year. Get a friend set some goals and take action!

  306. I finished a half marathon in under 3 hours while 18 weeks pregnant!

  307. I got a master’s degree in accounting at the age of 25. Worked as an auditor and paid off $120,000 in student loans with only $25,000 left to go within 4 years. I started a company that got big really fast and was quoted in the New York Times, with a full spread about my company in the Washington Post, and other newspapers.

    But what I’m really proud of is meeting my wonderful partner, overcoming social anxiety and having the strength to walk away from my audit career and my own business to pursue my true passion: taxes.

    I’m also proud that I read every one of the previous posts. I love it!

  308. I’m most proud of my voice. I had zero talent when I started. Imagine if Elmo was tone deaf and had a child with Bob Dylan. That gives you an idea. After years of practice and voice training I sound decent and get compliments instead of ridicule. :)

    Also, I placed 4th in the world in power tumbling when I was 14.

  309. Last year I raised £1000 for Macmillan Cancer Support by swimming the Great Scottish Swim, promoting it with a self-designed and made a blog/website for it sponsorgrant.com and promoted with mail-campaign and social media.

    It proved 10% of Macmillan’s total for that event. A statistic I use as a credibility marker on my CV now…

  310. I became an amateur film maker about 10 years ago. There is no money in this, but my film partner and I become better and better every year. Recently, citing this skill set and my partners VO work, I convinced someone to hire us to do eLearning for in-house software. It pays quite well.

    It is not the same as making a film and the learning curve was quite steep. But we now have a business that we can do from home. We will have 6 more projects from this same source and we are trying to figure out how to market this skill.

  311. Hey guys,

    Love your stories!
    Well, I rock because a few years ago I moved to China to pursue my career. I’m a 25 year old self-made expat here and now I’m working on my first ebook. I give useful tips about Chinese consumers for young entrepreneurs. Oh, I also speak four European languages and Mandarin.

    Best,

    Galina

  312. The one thing I’m most proud of is writing the first draft of my chick lit novel in 2007 and now finally getting the courage to self-publish it on CreateSpace. I’ve been scared to publish it before now because I was afraid of rejection/negative opinions but now I know, even if it’s a flop, I’ve learned a lot and it’s a launching point for more of what I really want to do with my time in the future.

  313. Recently the thing that I’m most proud of is quitting my very promising job in marketing and corporate communications to move to Japan and start my own business doing online marketing consulting (mostly SEO and AdWords).

    I was able to set up my business (which is based in Canada) from Japan and land my first two clients based on my professional network and referrals, and my third client through a professional connection that I made here in Tokyo.

    Probably what I’m most proud of in regards to this experience is becoming aware of some of my own negative scripts – such as that I just needed to work harder and stop being lazy in order to get my business off the ground. I’ve learned to trust myself and not give into internal trash talk when things aren’t going as well as I hoped. I’ve also given up most of the status symbols that I had (fancy job, nice condo, etc) and I feel that in doing so I’ll never be afraid of losing them ever again. I’m proudest of these skills because I think they will pay dividends throughout my entire life.

    And of course I am proud of being featured on this website as an “Earn More” case study. :) Thanks Ramit!

  314. Working my ass off to run a sub 4:30 mile. And i’m not talking 4 hours and 30 minutes…

  315. When my savings accounts hit $100,000

  316. I’m an ex-military officer, student commercial helicopter pilot whose only real work experience has been military or bureaucratic… I recently started voluntary work at an animal shelter, a complete tangent to anything I’ve done before.

    I discovered that throughout these brief careers I’ve developed the patience and confidence to safely handle and rehabilitate difficult and dangerous dogs. I’ve never had a dog even as a pet, but now I’m responsible for having saved the lives of, and then re-homed at least 20 animals who were otherwise due to be put down. I’m most proud of these successes, but equally most upset about the ones I couldn’t save.

  317. I left my country and relocated into another country where I started a training institute from the basics.
    Even though we started with very few students, we have grown into one of the household names in training and now average 60-70 students every six month.
    I have been there from start and there is definitely a feeling of achievement.
    Am now working on constructing a 1000 capacity college that will be able to offer a greater and more improved service.

  318. I’ve recovered from setbacks that made me feel like a worthless failure and then gone on to learn how minor those setbacks really were. I now have the equanimity and courage to try anything and not worry about social status and self-image, which I used to care about far too much. What’s funny is, I hadn’t even realized how much such matters bothered me.

  319. That I’ve lived in 4 countries (about a year and more);
    Studied in 3 countries (mostly gov’t sponsored) and competed head to head with students from world renowned universities
    Working in my 3rd country now

    And I am just getting started.

  320. Over a year ago, I was broke, sick and almost homeless. I’d lost everything and everyone, and I was in a LOT of debt. Every part of my life was a wreck – a lot of it my fault, a lot of it bad luck (i.e. people dying). I hadn’t carried a zero balance on my credit cards in 5 years.

    Today, things are totally different. In the last 2 months, I’ve paid off $3k of my credit card debt and am set to be free of all of it by May 2013. (Student loans by the following spring.) I’ve automated all my finances. I took care of my health and am no longer sick; from an insomniac who maybe got 1 hour/night of sleep, now I get 6. I even started exercising. I have a strong network now.

    *For the first time in my life, I have a financial cushion in the bank.* It’s not huge, but it’s steadily growing and a relief to me to know that if I suddenly get hit with a bill or lost my office job, I’d have a soft spot to land. I’ve never had that. The freedom that comes with that knowledge is beyond price.

    I started the freelancing material on Ramit’s site and this week I made $500. The money’s great, but it’s not so much the money itself but the feeling of appreciation and validation for my work that makes me the happiest. I plan to expand this into a full-time business.

    Other things: I left home at 19 to live and study in Paris. I learned French and Hebrew and am currently learning German and Japanese. I taught myself web design and code. I’ve traveled the world studying martial arts and have friends in 40 countries. I’m proud to say that this year, I was able to travel to see where both sides of my family came from – Germany, as well as Turkey (to honor my family who died in the genocide there). I put a lot of things to rest with those trips and I’ll carry those memories with me for the rest of my life.

    Anyway, I’ve had some rough spots but I came out of it alive and a better person for it. If I can do it, anyone can. I hope to help other people with their own rough spots, because I’ve been there and I know what it’s like; once you’ve been through hell, you’ll bend over backwards to ensure other people don’t have to linger there.

    • Cat,

      I think your story is absolutely beautiful. I love how you were able to overcome so much and turn things around the way you did. It’s funny that some people who have way less misfortune to turn around complain about how they are unable to change what they have, but you’ve clearly gone full circle. Congratulations and I wish you the absolute best (and I know it’s still coming!)

  321. I am most proud of my fierce independence and my self-discipline. In the last two years alone, I’ve traveled to 7 countries alone (South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Israel, United Kingdom, New Zealand, Australia) and have made plenty of new friends along the way. Generally, I can say that I’m proud of the fact that I always do what feels right for me and I really don’t care what anyone says (and I’ve gotten plenty of judgement over the years).

    Also, I have a knack for developing habits in a solid way. I started journaling in the middle of 2011 and now have two books full of journal entries. I’m also starting my own business (and developing content) and am moving to Australia next year. While I always weigh my options, I’m very self-motivated with a knack for rubbing that off on others as well.

    • Hi Nancy,

      I remember you talking of traveling a blog post or two back – I didn’t know it was that extensive. That’s awesome!! I haven’t been to Africa yet but I’d love to hit up Egypt, Morocco and South Africa. There’s so many places left to explore in this world.

  322. I am proud that I’m pursuing my dream of combining my creative talent and business sense to open an art quilt shop. I’ve squirreled away money from my corporate career, and I plan to make a difference in other people’s lives, make a fantastic income ( son in law school LOL!), and live a rich life as Ramit says. I’m looking forward to Wednesday’s class. Thanks Ramit for helping me get focused.

  323. In 2010, my husband’s business completely dried up. Conventional wisdom told us to freak out but we didn’t – we decided to celebrate instead and to see this as happening FOR us rather than TO us. Less than 2 years later, our quality of life is still close to what it was before and we have BOTH started new businesses that are experiencing amazing growth. I’m tempted to write “we are not totally out of the woods yet,” but that is bullshit. There are no woods. There never were. “The Woods” is just a limiting belief, an invisible script, a fictional wolf at the door. As long as you’re alive, you are still in the game and it is all good. Keep moving!

  324. I’m pretty proud that after 2 years of working at it, my husband and I paid off the credit card debt we racked up on 4 cards in 2 countries during our return to grad school. I’m proud that, as soon as we resumed our careers, rather than sticking our heads in the sand, we faced the music, set goals, and acted in line with our goals.

    I’m proud that my PhD thesis got an award from the university as the best thesis in my discipline. That’s one of 57 awards given to 1200+ graduates. This after years of fear that I was no good at research and worry that my thesis wasn’t good enough for me to even graduate.

    Oh yeah, and it hasn’t come up in conversation in years, but I have to brag about getting a 1600 on my SAT (BW: before writing).

  325. I’m working in a GE contractor as Project Manager, my team support a 380 M portfolio. Currently, we’ve 2 years working OT and the company is growing. Also, The company is driving a cultural change among the company related to improve people performance and recognition. That’s something I was presenting and discusing with CEO. I’m so proud about that.

  326. So wonderful to learn about people’s accomplishments. It’s amazing!

    As for myself, I created a science program for my undergrad. The irony is that while I was there, I struggled academically due to the lack of social support. And now, seven years later, the school is still funding the program. :)

  327. I’ve hosted CIrcle of Trust, a think tank/mastermind, for three groups of business owner’s for more than seven years. I’m adding this brag moment to the beginning of their talk time. Thanks for another great idea Ramit!

  328. I am very proud of my decision to stand by what i believe in and not go back to a bank job I hated. I am from a b-school where finance jobs are the “dream jobs” of every person in my cohort! i worked with a HUGE investment bank as an intern and absolutely hated my job! When they offered me a position, I turned them down, which shocked all of my cohorts. I instead chose to wait it out for a few months and find this job I love at a great startup! Although I am being paid $10,000 per year lesser, I am wayy happier than I could have been with those extra $10k. And like Ramit says, 10k is nothing in the long term and I really believe that my job is an investment in my future, because I love it and I am engaged in it! :)

    (And I am not really too shy to brag about this – I say it to as many people as they can, so that they break out of the dogma and follow their heart! :D )

  329. After quitting my job in the Research and Development Science Field, I had a career change and took a leap of faith into the personal growth niche.
    2 and a half years later after I was promoted as the new CEO to run the company. Woohoooo

  330. So I thank Ramit for providing this forum, It seems timely because I am in the midst of getting back on my feet again professionally. Reminding myself of the great things I have done helps me in this process.

    What many do not know about me:
    1. I earned three Masters degrees, and I put myself through graudate school through my own savings (a dual MS in Engg and Statistics, and an MBA from an Ivy League school). Whatever loans I took out to supplement my savings were paid off within 2 years of earning those degrees.
    2. I have never had any outstanding credit card debt…never. I pay my balance off every single month.
    3. I am in the middle of a self-defense class. I was able to take out the instructor in one strike :) (I’m only 5″1 and 120 lbs).

  331. There are many things in my life I’m proud of. My family, children, job and the few close friends I have. But recently I started a small (with a lower case ‘s’) business after an opportunity fell into my lap. I have always wanted to start a business but just didn’t know what to do, how to do it or even how to get started. But I killed all of the misconceived notions about how much money you needed and how you had to be smarter than everyone else, etc. and DID IT. I have 1 customer who pays me well and on time. I’d like to grow my biz but not beyond my ability to control it. I’m happy I got started and I’m learning more daily the benefits of being a business owner.

  332. I love reading about everyone’s accomplishments — you can feel all the positive energy coming through!!

    I’m most proud that my husband-to-be and I own a sailboat in Mexico and can spend half the year sailing, and half the year working. My thing is that “life is too short to say later, and winters suck” — so we skip them :)

    The 6 on/6 off life lets us work our butts off and maintain contact with the “real world” (aka the working world!), and then spend the winters exploring tropical destinations and living a pretty darn good life sailing.

    Small compared to lots of these amazing stories, but it’s been pretty huge in my life. Thanks for giving us a chance to share Ramit! Is your answer here somewhere??

  333. Cancer is getting its butt kicked.

    My two-month old is healthy despite having gone through chemo with me.

    Little boy (20 months) is happy, learning quickly, and adjusting well.

    Our marriage has never been stronger.

    When I go back to my casual job as a nurse, I will connect better.

    At 22 years of age. having lived overseas, graduated college, been married almost 3 years with two kids (both planned), and diagnosed with cancer, I am genuinely loving my life.

  334. Hi, i am proud that I have been keeping working out for 8 months so far.
    It has changed my physical balance as well as my daily life habbit, getting up at 0430, reading some books, studying new language, etc.
    Can be nothing special, but big improvement in my life.
    Furthermore, I got confidence I can improve something more. Salud!

  335. Making the decision to leave school to do what I want. Moving to NYC chasing dreams.

    Making friends in different countries.

    Meeting a random hot older (30s) woman during the day and taking her home later that night.

  336. Discovering surfing as a Londoner, 14 years ago. Allowing it to be a healthy part of all decisions I have made since, bringing me to San Francisco!

    Quickly jacking in a top graduate bank analyst programme in London since it meant nothing to me. I am still carving out a holy grail of energy and motivation but it’s a pleasure to have stumbled on IWTYTBR in the last year, and give up random web clicking…

  337. Overcoming several addictions through the years without destroying me or others. Finally getting a degree (both a bachelor’s and a master’s), speaking Spanish, getting my girl to love me :-), my sister

  338. I am most proud of taking the leap of leaving my medical practice after 12 years. I loved my job and my patients, but with 5 kids (and one on the way — shh! It’s a secret) life is too short to miss this one chance to be an involved dad. I realized there was a niche in doing a specialized surgical procedure, so I did the extra training and after a year of doing it ‘on the side’, I left my practice and limit my practice to two days of week of operating.

    Financially it’s more lucrative, but more importantly I am getting to do the ‘hands-on’ part of parenting that I was missing. Who knew going on field trips with my kids’ classes was going to be so much fun.

    Taking a chance like this was out of character, but as I start my 40s I look back at my life with many more regrets about things I DIDN’T do rather than things I did.

  339. Traveling 2 years around the world, buying 1M worth of real estate before I turned 24 (despite hating it), and losing half my body fat % doing the body for life program!

  340. Ramit, I’ve been applying what you teach to business and personal life. Because I run my own business, financial success in business directly equals financial success personally. 4 months ago I raised my rates by 50% and niched down my target market. After running my second quarter summary I discovered the business is on track to having 50% more gross revenue for this fiscal year. As a result I’m able to pay off my personal credit card debts at $1,000/month. That’s 4x faster than I’ve ever been able to pay it off in the 7 years that I’ve carried a balance. Even if I stagnate at this income level, I’ll be able to get out of debt (credit card first, then the rest) in only 2 years!!