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GOLD! So if you are born poor in a 3rd world shitpool, can you still make it? My Story.

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DarkKnight

Bronze Contributor
Jan 3, 2020
24
216
49
In one his books, MJ makes a good argument: If you are born in a First World country, have a healthy mind and body, there is absolutely no reason for you to not be able to break through the chains of servitude. Now a question arises -- what if you are born on the wrong side of the planet? And you ain't too smart?

I had that puzzle to solve. I was born poor in a 3rd world country where corruption and cast-ism reigned strong. In early childhood, I experienced beatings on a daily basis because I didn't have a f*cking pen to do my homework and the teacher won't believe me. Or not being able to afford a 5 cents worth box of color pencils. Watching hot food being served to paying customers/kids while you starve in a corner, watching kids buy ice-cream and all the other shit a kid wants after-school and eyeing that stuff secretly for fear of being made fun of for being poor again. Not having a soda-pop in 10 f*cking years? Wearing run-down over-sized borrowed clothes to school on your f*cking farewell/prom and being made fun of yet again as the girl you love watches secretly in the background (and secretly returns your calls but is too afraid to socially own you because you are f*cking poor). One disease -- poverty. [I dare anyone who says money doesn't matter].

As much as that hurt me, it f*cking pissed me off and filled me with anger, revenge and a special kind of hate. My 20s at college were a repeat because I lived in a 10$ a month room in a sulphur warehouse where drinking poisonous water caused me to get jaundice thrice in a year. I rode a broken down bicycle to college that made squeky noises and got laughed at by rich kids, every single day. My budget for food was less than $1 a day. I did not have healthcare. I waited months for 'emergency' surgeries because there were too many poor people before me in the line who couldn't afford it either. I once happened to wait for a few hours outside an overcrowded hospital at night only to find out one of the guys I was watching wait the last night, had now died - waiting. How I even got to college is a story in itself.

Anyway, somewhere during the suffering, I dared to dream. A dream where all of this suffering had ended, where I could drink clean water and breathe clean air and not be bothered about where the next meal would come from. I wanted away from being looked on as being of a certain caste, of living in fear in a corrupt country and being humiliated everyday. So, I cried the nights out and started to dream about a mythical place where there was no more pain, no more humiliation, no more fear.

WW1: It finally dawned on me that the only way this shit was changing was if I managed to get to a first world country with a quality education. I inquired about how much it would cost -- about $120,000 was the figure I was told I would need after visiting every 'higher education' fair that came to the city, even if I managed to get in a quality school with my grades, that is. There was only one problem -- I didn't have a $100 to spend and I was stupid and flunking my first semester. But I couldn't dream of anything else, the dream had consumed me like MJ's Ferrari. I had met too many people returning from the fairy lands telling me too many tales about the myth being true, I had watched too many videos, read too many brochures and dreamed too far. When I made it known to my family, I was pronounced a lunatic. I was 22.

I would need to write a book on what happened next, but too keep it short, here's a quick summary.
I got OBSESSED with history's last stands. Where men, CERTAIN of their impending death, instead of running away to save their lives, chose to stand valiantly and face their fears as they embraced death fighting odds too great with open arms. I had made a commitment to march into the unknown and not give a f*ck about the odds. In hindsight, I don't know if I would do again what I did. But I was too hurt and too stupid to care. My room resembled more of a HQ during times of war than a sane 22yr old's room. The walls were covered with maps of my next offensive -- in other words, what I needed to do next to get JUST ONE INCH CLOSER. There were offensives planned out years in advance with 'stockpiles' of skills. There were 'fronts', elaborate defensive operations, even resource allocation towards researching for an A-bomb that could be a game-changer. With military history books, ideas were taken and strategically applied towards my objectives. Many facades were created and dummies planted to save resources on fronts when I could not afford to fight at multiple fronts at the same time.

One guy, after I met hundreds tells me that the secret to getting in a good school is research papers. I was in a school where the CS 'Professors' don't understand English or coding, forget research. Hell, in that college 3 girls were murdered in the last 2 years -- hacked to pieces with an axe by their 'lovers'. What 'research' could I do? So an offensive was planned, in f*cking great detail and 2 years later, I published 7 research papers of dubious quality because that was all I knew. But it was done. I crammed 5,000 English words inorder to take the GRE when I sucked at cramming. I took the TOEFL exam 3 times. I've written the IELTS thrice as well -- each time with near perfect scores.
While all this was going on, a second front opened -- I got a job as a software developer in a place with absent labor laws requiring me to work 18 hour days, 364 days a year. I took shit at my job every day, got the lowest grade possible to required keep my job and indulged in parasitic entrepreneurship. I didn't have time to date or make friends. I worked like an absolute a$$.
After wading through this pool of shit that stretched for miles for 5 years, I applied to a Western School that accepted me with a 100 % tuition waiver + a Research Assistant ship. Didn't have the $5,000 I needed to come up with to even get to that country. I went back to the drawing board, planned a new offensive with the goal to get even that $5,000 as scholarship money and 3 years later applied again, getting into 8 schools with 5 of them extending 100% waivers and assistant-ships. Due to a combination of plain stupidity, poor planning and the general difficulty of getting a non-immigrant first-world country visa when you get a full ride which another native kid could use, my visa got rejected 4 times -- right at the point of culmination of my 8 years of blood and sweat. I had the college offer letter in hand -- full ride, everything ready to go, just awaiting a stamp of approval from the 'system' to leave the bottom-most slave barracks of the ship but was swatted away like a cockroach. No one gave a f*ck. I was broken, depressed, and finished. A regular at the psychiatrist. I tried buying poison online to commit suicide. I had given up all of my career opportunities for this and the war was lost. But I did not die.

3 years post that, I visited a first-world country for the first time in my life on a tourist visa. I wanted to go see first hand if the myth was really true. I couldn't afford Europe, but I'd heard Singapore was a first-world country. When the flight landed and I was on my way to the hotel, I couldn't believe the contrast between where I lived and this place I was in. I managed to keep it together all morning but I broke down completely taking a walk on a street there one night. It was either this or death itself. It didn't matter anymore. I came back home and re-applied with whatever grades that were still valid. I wish I could tell you it was easy this time. It wasn't. Not at all. But good things don't come easy. Another crawl through a pool of shit and 5 years later, today I can write this:

After 12 years of blood and sweat chasing down an impossible dream and many countless battles and failures later, I graduated last year from a top-ranked school in this First-World country I live in now. I work as a software developer in some big-name corporation here and make a decent wage. I drink clean water and breathe awesome clean air. I can have meat or whatever, any day I want. I work less than 8 hrs a day and make 50x the money I made from my first job.
I am a Permanent Resident on the path to citizenship. It is possible. Certainly not easy.

WW2:
The world is F*cked as MJ says. I am still not free. Although I work way less than 8 hrs a day, I still have to look to my employer for a paycheck, deal with office politics and can't just take off to see the world. As grateful as I am, I WILL NOT DIE IN CHAINS. This is my only WHY. FREEDOM.

Oh, and I'm on it. Planning for another campaign for a pivotal war that I will EVENTUALLY win. I will be free in 10 years, or I will die trying. Actually, there is no OR.
My room is again being converted to a war-room. Maps again, stories of last stands, books of entrepreneurs who made it despite all odds. The prize of the battle is my life, the objective to build a SaaS business that eventually brings me $50,000 a month after tax without me having to work everyday. The shorter-term goal is to build a personal developer brand so I can get my foot into consulting to finance my new ventures. It can be done -- just would need a few thousand hours of skills-acquisition.
And it won't happen tomorrow. This is a game of inches. One, bloody, F*cking inch at a time. Crawling through fingernails, desperately struggling to breathe another puff of air. Life or Death. Freedom or Slavery.

So, this was my introduction. I have been lurking here for a long time but never posted. And I guess, this is my way of saying 'Hi Folks!'.
 

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DarkKnight

Bronze Contributor
Jan 3, 2020
24
216
49
Welcome!

What a story.
What a mindset.
You'll fit right in!
Thank You! I was very hesitant at first posting my story here because people in general are very negative whenever I bring up my background. Too much hate, both from folks from my old and new home countries. The folks from the old world think I got 'lucky', the folks in the new world think it's unfair that I make many times the money they make as citizens born here.

No one wants to talk about wading through a pool of shit to come clean on the other side. Just like MJ's conversation with the guy with the ice-cream cone. I f*cking love you kindred-spirited brethren who understand what's it all about.
 

Saavedra

Contributor
Aug 4, 2013
59
43
45
Do you believe it is getting better in the place you were born?

How many brothers and sisters did you have?
 
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Ismails

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
May 7, 2019
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I am totally mesmerized. Love the words the way you have described.
 

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OP
OP
D

DarkKnight

Bronze Contributor
Jan 3, 2020
24
216
49
That sucks sorry to hear that. It is really a shame that people still value each other by something else than their actions.
Unfortunately, the truth about people is that their morality is based on any set of principles that affords them gains as a group without work, in other words, puts them at an advantage. E.g. If you were born in a country, it should not be automatic that you should have a job reservation. Whether you paid taxes, have a clean record, etc. should be a big factor in determining that right. But people like nationalism when its of benefit to them, just not when they are a victim of the same concept. Similarly concepts like race or caste affords them benefits without the work. Sucks but true.
 

Walter Hay

Legendary Contributor
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Speedway Pass
Sep 13, 2014
2,758
11,299
2,453
World citizen
The answer to the question posed in your thread subject heading is YES!!!!!! You have proved it because you never gave up.

I found your story very moving, because I too had a hard start in life, although it is not to be compared with yours.

This is one reason why I took my teenage sons with me on business trips to various Asian countries. It opened their eyes to the realities of life for those far less fortunate than they, having a wealthy father.

I must say that I did not indulge them or spoil them with expensive toys and such. I made them work for their pocket money and even bought them second hand bicycles when the neighbors had the most expensive bikes available.

You might find some interest in my story: Walter Hay, Imp/Export Extraordinaire (Vandalay Industries)

I wish you all the best, and would be very happy to provide help if you need it.

Walter
 

Ing

Silver Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Jun 8, 2019
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Bavaria
A long post, but worth to read!

Have all luck as you had perseverance!
 

kleine2

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Sep 15, 2013
139
183
143
In one his books, MJ makes a good argument: If you are born in a First World country, have a healthy mind and body, there is absolutely no reason for you to not be able to break through the chains of servitude. Now a question arises -- what if you are born on the wrong side of the planet? And you ain't too smart?

I had that puzzle to solve. I was born poor in a 3rd world country where corruption and cast-ism reigned strong. In early childhood, I experienced beatings on a daily basis because I didn't have a f*cking pen to do my homework and the teacher won't believe me. Or not being able to afford a 5 cents worth box of color pencils. Watching hot food being served to paying customers/kids while you starve in a corner, watching kids buy ice-cream and all the other shit a kid wants after-school and eyeing that stuff secretly for fear of being made fun of for being poor again. Not having a soda-pop in 10 F*cking years? Wearing run-down over-sized borrowed clothes to school on your F*cking farewell/prom and being made fun of yet again as the girl you love watches secretly in the background (and secretly returns your calls but is too afraid to socially own you because you are F*cking poor). One disease -- poverty. [I dare anyone who says money doesn't matter].

As much as that hurt me, it f*cking pissed me off and filled me with anger, revenge and a special kind of hate. My 20s at college were a repeat because I lived in a 10$ a month room in a sulphur warehouse where drinking poisonous water caused me to get jaundice thrice in a year. I rode a broken down bicycle to college that made squeky noises and got laughed at by rich kids, every single day. My budget for food was less than $1 a day. I did not have healthcare. I waited months for 'emergency' surgeries because there were too many poor people before me in the line who couldn't afford it either. I once happened to wait for a few hours outside an overcrowded hospital at night only to find out one of the guys I was watching wait the last night, had now died - waiting. How I even got to college is a story in itself.

Anyway, somewhere during the suffering, I dared to dream. A dream where all of this suffering had ended, where I could drink clean water and breathe clean air and not be bothered about where the next meal would come from. I wanted away from being looked on as being of a certain caste, of living in fear in a corrupt country and being humiliated everyday. So, I cried the nights out and started to dream about a mythical place where there was no more pain, no more humiliation, no more fear.

WW1: It finally dawned on me that the only way this shit was changing was if I managed to get to a first world country with a quality education. I inquired about how much it would cost -- about $120,000 was the figure I was told I would need after visiting every 'higher education' fair that came to the city, even if I managed to get in a quality school with my grades, that is. There was only one problem -- I didn't have a $100 to spend and I was stupid and flunking my first semester. But I couldn't dream of anything else, the dream had consumed me like MJ's Ferrari. I had met too many people returning from the fairy lands telling me too many tales about the myth being true, I had watched too many videos, read too many brochures and dreamed too far. When I made it known to my family, I was pronounced a lunatic. I was 22.

I would need to write a book on what happened next, but too keep it short, here's a quick summary.
I got OBSESSED with history's last stands. Where men, CERTAIN of their impending death, instead of running away to save their lives, chose to stand valiantly and face their fears as they embraced death fighting odds too great with open arms. I had made a commitment to march into the unknown and not give a F*ck about the odds. In hindsight, I don't know if I would do again what I did. But I was too hurt and too stupid to care. My room resembled more of a HQ during times of war than a sane 22yr old's room. The walls were covered with maps of my next offensive -- in other words, what I needed to do next to get JUST ONE INCH CLOSER. There were offensives planned out years in advance with 'stockpiles' of skills. There were 'fronts', elaborate defensive operations, even resource allocation towards researching for an A-bomb that could be a game-changer. With military history books, ideas were taken and strategically applied towards my objectives. Many facades were created and dummies planted to save resources on fronts when I could not afford to fight at multiple fronts at the same time.

One guy, after I met hundreds tells me that the secret to getting in a good school is research papers. I was in a school where the CS 'Professors' don't understand English or coding, forget research. Hell, in that college 3 girls were murdered in the last 2 years -- hacked to pieces with an axe by their 'lovers'. What 'research' could I do? So an offensive was planned, in F*cking great detail and 2 years later, I published 7 research papers of dubious quality because that was all I knew. But it was done. I crammed 5,000 English words inorder to take the GRE when I sucked at cramming. I took the TOEFL exam 3 times. I've written the IELTS thrice as well -- each time with near perfect scores.
While all this was going on, a second front opened -- I got a job as a software developer in a place with absent labor laws requiring me to work 18 hour days, 364 days a year. I took shit at my job every day, got the lowest grade possible to required keep my job and indulged in parasitic entrepreneurship. I didn't have time to date or make friends. I worked like an absolute a$$.
After wading through this pool of shit that stretched for miles for 5 years, I applied to a Western School that accepted me with a 100 % tuition waiver + a Research Assistant ship. Didn't have the $5,000 I needed to come up with to even get to that country. I went back to the drawing board, planned a new offensive with the goal to get even that $5,000 as scholarship money and 3 years later applied again, getting into 8 schools with 5 of them extending 100% waivers and assistant-ships. Due to a combination of plain stupidity, poor planning and the general difficulty of getting a non-immigrant first-world country visa when you get a full ride which another native kid could use, my visa got rejected 4 times -- right at the point of culmination of my 8 years of blood and sweat. I had the college offer letter in hand -- full ride, everything ready to go, just awaiting a stamp of approval from the 'system' to leave the bottom-most slave barracks of the ship but was swatted away like a cockroach. No one gave a F*ck. I was broken, depressed, and finished. A regular at the psychiatrist. I tried buying poison online to commit suicide. I had given up all of my career opportunities for this and the war was lost. But I did not die.

3 years post that, I visited a first-world country for the first time in my life on a tourist visa. I wanted to go see first hand if the myth was really true. I couldn't afford Europe, but I'd heard Singapore was a first-world country. When the flight landed and I was on my way to the hotel, I couldn't believe the contrast between where I lived and this place I was in. I managed to keep it together all morning but I broke down completely taking a walk on a street there one night. It was either this or death itself. It didn't matter anymore. I came back home and re-applied with whatever grades that were still valid. I wish I could tell you it was easy this time. It wasn't. Not at all. But good things don't come easy. Another crawl through a pool of shit and 5 years later, today I can write this:

After 12 years of blood and sweat chasing down an impossible dream and many countless battles and failures later, I graduated last year from a top-ranked school in this First-World country I live in now. I work as a software developer in some big-name corporation here and make a decent wage. I drink clean water and breathe awesome clean air. I can have meat or whatever, any day I want. I work less than 8 hrs a day and make 50x the money I made from my first job.
I am a Permanent Resident on the path to citizenship. It is possible. Certainly not easy.

WW2:
The world is F*cked as MJ says. I am still not free. Although I work way less than 8 hrs a day, I still have to look to my employer for a paycheck, deal with office politics and can't just take off to see the world. As grateful as I am, I WILL NOT DIE IN CHAINS. This is my only WHY. FREEDOM.

Oh, and I'm on it. Planning for another campaign for a pivotal war that I will EVENTUALLY win. I will be free in 10 years, or I will die trying. Actually, there is no OR.
My room is again being converted to a war-room. Maps again, stories of last stands, books of entrepreneurs who made it despite all odds. The prize of the battle is my life, the objective to build a SaaS business that eventually brings me $50,000 a month after tax without me having to work everyday. The shorter-term goal is to build a personal developer brand so I can get my foot into consulting to finance my new ventures. It can be done -- just would need a few thousand hours of skills-acquisition.
And it won't happen tomorrow. This is a game of inches. One, bloody, F*cking inch at a time. Crawling through fingernails, desperately struggling to breathe another puff of air. Life or Death. Freedom or Slavery.

So, this was my introduction. I have been lurking here for a long time but never posted. And I guess, this is my way of saying 'Hi Folks!'.
Amazing story!
I'm curious how and when you discovered MJ's books?
 

MaxKhalus

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Jun 7, 2018
333
329
175
19
Spain
In one his books, MJ makes a good argument: If you are born in a First World country, have a healthy mind and body, there is absolutely no reason for you to not be able to break through the chains of servitude. Now a question arises -- what if you are born on the wrong side of the planet? And you ain't too smart?

I had that puzzle to solve. I was born poor in a 3rd world country where corruption and cast-ism reigned strong. In early childhood, I experienced beatings on a daily basis because I didn't have a f*cking pen to do my homework and the teacher won't believe me. Or not being able to afford a 5 cents worth box of color pencils. Watching hot food being served to paying customers/kids while you starve in a corner, watching kids buy ice-cream and all the other shit a kid wants after-school and eyeing that stuff secretly for fear of being made fun of for being poor again. Not having a soda-pop in 10 F*cking years? Wearing run-down over-sized borrowed clothes to school on your F*cking farewell/prom and being made fun of yet again as the girl you love watches secretly in the background (and secretly returns your calls but is too afraid to socially own you because you are F*cking poor). One disease -- poverty. [I dare anyone who says money doesn't matter].

As much as that hurt me, it f*cking pissed me off and filled me with anger, revenge and a special kind of hate. My 20s at college were a repeat because I lived in a 10$ a month room in a sulphur warehouse where drinking poisonous water caused me to get jaundice thrice in a year. I rode a broken down bicycle to college that made squeky noises and got laughed at by rich kids, every single day. My budget for food was less than $1 a day. I did not have healthcare. I waited months for 'emergency' surgeries because there were too many poor people before me in the line who couldn't afford it either. I once happened to wait for a few hours outside an overcrowded hospital at night only to find out one of the guys I was watching wait the last night, had now died - waiting. How I even got to college is a story in itself.

Anyway, somewhere during the suffering, I dared to dream. A dream where all of this suffering had ended, where I could drink clean water and breathe clean air and not be bothered about where the next meal would come from. I wanted away from being looked on as being of a certain caste, of living in fear in a corrupt country and being humiliated everyday. So, I cried the nights out and started to dream about a mythical place where there was no more pain, no more humiliation, no more fear.

WW1: It finally dawned on me that the only way this shit was changing was if I managed to get to a first world country with a quality education. I inquired about how much it would cost -- about $120,000 was the figure I was told I would need after visiting every 'higher education' fair that came to the city, even if I managed to get in a quality school with my grades, that is. There was only one problem -- I didn't have a $100 to spend and I was stupid and flunking my first semester. But I couldn't dream of anything else, the dream had consumed me like MJ's Ferrari. I had met too many people returning from the fairy lands telling me too many tales about the myth being true, I had watched too many videos, read too many brochures and dreamed too far. When I made it known to my family, I was pronounced a lunatic. I was 22.

I would need to write a book on what happened next, but too keep it short, here's a quick summary.
I got OBSESSED with history's last stands. Where men, CERTAIN of their impending death, instead of running away to save their lives, chose to stand valiantly and face their fears as they embraced death fighting odds too great with open arms. I had made a commitment to march into the unknown and not give a F*ck about the odds. In hindsight, I don't know if I would do again what I did. But I was too hurt and too stupid to care. My room resembled more of a HQ during times of war than a sane 22yr old's room. The walls were covered with maps of my next offensive -- in other words, what I needed to do next to get JUST ONE INCH CLOSER. There were offensives planned out years in advance with 'stockpiles' of skills. There were 'fronts', elaborate defensive operations, even resource allocation towards researching for an A-bomb that could be a game-changer. With military history books, ideas were taken and strategically applied towards my objectives. Many facades were created and dummies planted to save resources on fronts when I could not afford to fight at multiple fronts at the same time.

One guy, after I met hundreds tells me that the secret to getting in a good school is research papers. I was in a school where the CS 'Professors' don't understand English or coding, forget research. Hell, in that college 3 girls were murdered in the last 2 years -- hacked to pieces with an axe by their 'lovers'. What 'research' could I do? So an offensive was planned, in F*cking great detail and 2 years later, I published 7 research papers of dubious quality because that was all I knew. But it was done. I crammed 5,000 English words inorder to take the GRE when I sucked at cramming. I took the TOEFL exam 3 times. I've written the IELTS thrice as well -- each time with near perfect scores.
While all this was going on, a second front opened -- I got a job as a software developer in a place with absent labor laws requiring me to work 18 hour days, 364 days a year. I took shit at my job every day, got the lowest grade possible to required keep my job and indulged in parasitic entrepreneurship. I didn't have time to date or make friends. I worked like an absolute a$$.
After wading through this pool of shit that stretched for miles for 5 years, I applied to a Western School that accepted me with a 100 % tuition waiver + a Research Assistant ship. Didn't have the $5,000 I needed to come up with to even get to that country. I went back to the drawing board, planned a new offensive with the goal to get even that $5,000 as scholarship money and 3 years later applied again, getting into 8 schools with 5 of them extending 100% waivers and assistant-ships. Due to a combination of plain stupidity, poor planning and the general difficulty of getting a non-immigrant first-world country visa when you get a full ride which another native kid could use, my visa got rejected 4 times -- right at the point of culmination of my 8 years of blood and sweat. I had the college offer letter in hand -- full ride, everything ready to go, just awaiting a stamp of approval from the 'system' to leave the bottom-most slave barracks of the ship but was swatted away like a cockroach. No one gave a F*ck. I was broken, depressed, and finished. A regular at the psychiatrist. I tried buying poison online to commit suicide. I had given up all of my career opportunities for this and the war was lost. But I did not die.

3 years post that, I visited a first-world country for the first time in my life on a tourist visa. I wanted to go see first hand if the myth was really true. I couldn't afford Europe, but I'd heard Singapore was a first-world country. When the flight landed and I was on my way to the hotel, I couldn't believe the contrast between where I lived and this place I was in. I managed to keep it together all morning but I broke down completely taking a walk on a street there one night. It was either this or death itself. It didn't matter anymore. I came back home and re-applied with whatever grades that were still valid. I wish I could tell you it was easy this time. It wasn't. Not at all. But good things don't come easy. Another crawl through a pool of shit and 5 years later, today I can write this:

After 12 years of blood and sweat chasing down an impossible dream and many countless battles and failures later, I graduated last year from a top-ranked school in this First-World country I live in now. I work as a software developer in some big-name corporation here and make a decent wage. I drink clean water and breathe awesome clean air. I can have meat or whatever, any day I want. I work less than 8 hrs a day and make 50x the money I made from my first job.
I am a Permanent Resident on the path to citizenship. It is possible. Certainly not easy.

WW2:
The world is F*cked as MJ says. I am still not free. Although I work way less than 8 hrs a day, I still have to look to my employer for a paycheck, deal with office politics and can't just take off to see the world. As grateful as I am, I WILL NOT DIE IN CHAINS. This is my only WHY. FREEDOM.

Oh, and I'm on it. Planning for another campaign for a pivotal war that I will EVENTUALLY win. I will be free in 10 years, or I will die trying. Actually, there is no OR.
My room is again being converted to a war-room. Maps again, stories of last stands, books of entrepreneurs who made it despite all odds. The prize of the battle is my life, the objective to build a SaaS business that eventually brings me $50,000 a month after tax without me having to work everyday. The shorter-term goal is to build a personal developer brand so I can get my foot into consulting to finance my new ventures. It can be done -- just would need a few thousand hours of skills-acquisition.
And it won't happen tomorrow. This is a game of inches. One, bloody, F*cking inch at a time. Crawling through fingernails, desperately struggling to breathe another puff of air. Life or Death. Freedom or Slavery.

So, this was my introduction. I have been lurking here for a long time but never posted. And I guess, this is my way of saying 'Hi Folks!'.
This guy thought just the same you did.
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rt_evi5WT1M
 

ZF Lee

Platinum Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Jul 27, 2016
2,337
4,116
1,026
22
Malaysia
In one his books, MJ makes a good argument: If you are born in a First World country, have a healthy mind and body, there is absolutely no reason for you to not be able to break through the chains of servitude. Now a question arises -- what if you are born on the wrong side of the planet? And you ain't too smart?

I had that puzzle to solve. I was born poor in a 3rd world country where corruption and cast-ism reigned strong. In early childhood, I experienced beatings on a daily basis because I didn't have a f*cking pen to do my homework and the teacher won't believe me. Or not being able to afford a 5 cents worth box of color pencils. Watching hot food being served to paying customers/kids while you starve in a corner, watching kids buy ice-cream and all the other shit a kid wants after-school and eyeing that stuff secretly for fear of being made fun of for being poor again. Not having a soda-pop in 10 F*cking years? Wearing run-down over-sized borrowed clothes to school on your F*cking farewell/prom and being made fun of yet again as the girl you love watches secretly in the background (and secretly returns your calls but is too afraid to socially own you because you are F*cking poor). One disease -- poverty. [I dare anyone who says money doesn't matter].

As much as that hurt me, it f*cking pissed me off and filled me with anger, revenge and a special kind of hate. My 20s at college were a repeat because I lived in a 10$ a month room in a sulphur warehouse where drinking poisonous water caused me to get jaundice thrice in a year. I rode a broken down bicycle to college that made squeky noises and got laughed at by rich kids, every single day. My budget for food was less than $1 a day. I did not have healthcare. I waited months for 'emergency' surgeries because there were too many poor people before me in the line who couldn't afford it either. I once happened to wait for a few hours outside an overcrowded hospital at night only to find out one of the guys I was watching wait the last night, had now died - waiting. How I even got to college is a story in itself.

Anyway, somewhere during the suffering, I dared to dream. A dream where all of this suffering had ended, where I could drink clean water and breathe clean air and not be bothered about where the next meal would come from. I wanted away from being looked on as being of a certain caste, of living in fear in a corrupt country and being humiliated everyday. So, I cried the nights out and started to dream about a mythical place where there was no more pain, no more humiliation, no more fear.

WW1: It finally dawned on me that the only way this shit was changing was if I managed to get to a first world country with a quality education. I inquired about how much it would cost -- about $120,000 was the figure I was told I would need after visiting every 'higher education' fair that came to the city, even if I managed to get in a quality school with my grades, that is. There was only one problem -- I didn't have a $100 to spend and I was stupid and flunking my first semester. But I couldn't dream of anything else, the dream had consumed me like MJ's Ferrari. I had met too many people returning from the fairy lands telling me too many tales about the myth being true, I had watched too many videos, read too many brochures and dreamed too far. When I made it known to my family, I was pronounced a lunatic. I was 22.

I would need to write a book on what happened next, but too keep it short, here's a quick summary.
I got OBSESSED with history's last stands. Where men, CERTAIN of their impending death, instead of running away to save their lives, chose to stand valiantly and face their fears as they embraced death fighting odds too great with open arms. I had made a commitment to march into the unknown and not give a F*ck about the odds. In hindsight, I don't know if I would do again what I did. But I was too hurt and too stupid to care. My room resembled more of a HQ during times of war than a sane 22yr old's room. The walls were covered with maps of my next offensive -- in other words, what I needed to do next to get JUST ONE INCH CLOSER. There were offensives planned out years in advance with 'stockpiles' of skills. There were 'fronts', elaborate defensive operations, even resource allocation towards researching for an A-bomb that could be a game-changer. With military history books, ideas were taken and strategically applied towards my objectives. Many facades were created and dummies planted to save resources on fronts when I could not afford to fight at multiple fronts at the same time.

One guy, after I met hundreds tells me that the secret to getting in a good school is research papers. I was in a school where the CS 'Professors' don't understand English or coding, forget research. Hell, in that college 3 girls were murdered in the last 2 years -- hacked to pieces with an axe by their 'lovers'. What 'research' could I do? So an offensive was planned, in F*cking great detail and 2 years later, I published 7 research papers of dubious quality because that was all I knew. But it was done. I crammed 5,000 English words inorder to take the GRE when I sucked at cramming. I took the TOEFL exam 3 times. I've written the IELTS thrice as well -- each time with near perfect scores.
While all this was going on, a second front opened -- I got a job as a software developer in a place with absent labor laws requiring me to work 18 hour days, 364 days a year. I took shit at my job every day, got the lowest grade possible to required keep my job and indulged in parasitic entrepreneurship. I didn't have time to date or make friends. I worked like an absolute a$$.
After wading through this pool of shit that stretched for miles for 5 years, I applied to a Western School that accepted me with a 100 % tuition waiver + a Research Assistant ship. Didn't have the $5,000 I needed to come up with to even get to that country. I went back to the drawing board, planned a new offensive with the goal to get even that $5,000 as scholarship money and 3 years later applied again, getting into 8 schools with 5 of them extending 100% waivers and assistant-ships. Due to a combination of plain stupidity, poor planning and the general difficulty of getting a non-immigrant first-world country visa when you get a full ride which another native kid could use, my visa got rejected 4 times -- right at the point of culmination of my 8 years of blood and sweat. I had the college offer letter in hand -- full ride, everything ready to go, just awaiting a stamp of approval from the 'system' to leave the bottom-most slave barracks of the ship but was swatted away like a cockroach. No one gave a F*ck. I was broken, depressed, and finished. A regular at the psychiatrist. I tried buying poison online to commit suicide. I had given up all of my career opportunities for this and the war was lost. But I did not die.

3 years post that, I visited a first-world country for the first time in my life on a tourist visa. I wanted to go see first hand if the myth was really true. I couldn't afford Europe, but I'd heard Singapore was a first-world country. When the flight landed and I was on my way to the hotel, I couldn't believe the contrast between where I lived and this place I was in. I managed to keep it together all morning but I broke down completely taking a walk on a street there one night. It was either this or death itself. It didn't matter anymore. I came back home and re-applied with whatever grades that were still valid. I wish I could tell you it was easy this time. It wasn't. Not at all. But good things don't come easy. Another crawl through a pool of shit and 5 years later, today I can write this:

After 12 years of blood and sweat chasing down an impossible dream and many countless battles and failures later, I graduated last year from a top-ranked school in this First-World country I live in now. I work as a software developer in some big-name corporation here and make a decent wage. I drink clean water and breathe awesome clean air. I can have meat or whatever, any day I want. I work less than 8 hrs a day and make 50x the money I made from my first job.
I am a Permanent Resident on the path to citizenship. It is possible. Certainly not easy.

WW2:
The world is F*cked as MJ says. I am still not free. Although I work way less than 8 hrs a day, I still have to look to my employer for a paycheck, deal with office politics and can't just take off to see the world. As grateful as I am, I WILL NOT DIE IN CHAINS. This is my only WHY. FREEDOM.

Oh, and I'm on it. Planning for another campaign for a pivotal war that I will EVENTUALLY win. I will be free in 10 years, or I will die trying. Actually, there is no OR.
My room is again being converted to a war-room. Maps again, stories of last stands, books of entrepreneurs who made it despite all odds. The prize of the battle is my life, the objective to build a SaaS business that eventually brings me $50,000 a month after tax without me having to work everyday. The shorter-term goal is to build a personal developer brand so I can get my foot into consulting to finance my new ventures. It can be done -- just would need a few thousand hours of skills-acquisition.
And it won't happen tomorrow. This is a game of inches. One, bloody, F*cking inch at a time. Crawling through fingernails, desperately struggling to breathe another puff of air. Life or Death. Freedom or Slavery.

So, this was my introduction. I have been lurking here for a long time but never posted. And I guess, this is my way of saying 'Hi Folks!'.
Holy Moly thanks for the amazing story!!!
Lots of Fastlaners here would hit on going the 'Slowlane education' pathway, but I'm glad you used it as just one of your stepping stones.

Really looking forward to your war progress ahead.
Even in these times of COVID-madness and mush-cookie culture, we need to really rise up and UNSCRIPT ourselves.
 
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DarkKnight

Bronze Contributor
Jan 3, 2020
24
216
49
The answer to the question posed in your thread subject heading is YES!!!!!! You have proved it because you never gave up.

I found your story very moving, because I too had a hard start in life, although it is not to be compared with yours.

This is one reason why I took my teenage sons with me on business trips to various Asian countries. It opened their eyes to the realities of life for those far less fortunate than they, having a wealthy father.

I must say that I did not indulge them or spoil them with expensive toys and such. I made them work for their pocket money and even bought them second hand bicycles when the neighbors had the most expensive bikes available.

You might find some interest in my story: Walter Hay, Imp/Export Extraordinaire (Vandalay Industries)

I wish you all the best, and would be very happy to provide help if you need it.

Walter
Thank You for taking the time to write to me sir, I truly feel honored.

After reading through your story, I see a ton of parallels. I was bullied as a kid as well, well into my 20s. I wasn't particularly strong and got beaten to a pulp many times, however, I had to figure out a way to defend myself and I too, worked out my own version of martial arts. One move and I could pin down a much bigger opponent in a lock slowly draining his energy. Then, I learnt to box. Not like real boxing -- no dancing around, just figured I couldn't run from the bullies so might as well do some 'payback'. I started strengthening my fists by punching bare-fisted on concrete walls, later a boxing bag filled with sand. I would be in a lot of pain, most times it did hurt my hands and I bled. However, I sent 2 bullies to the hospital with punches aimed straight at their guts and their heads. I planned to kill a 3rd one, and I am really grateful his friends got to know of it hours before I was about to do it and talked him into apologizing to me and leaving me alone post that. No excuses, but at 19, I didn't know any better!

I also started two businesses before the age of 10 but my parents humiliated me and made me apologize to my customers, even though I had not conned them. (There were my entrepreneurial ventures to make money for after-school snacks). It took me such a long time to find my entrepreneurial traction after those events due to association of entrepreneurial activity with humiliation/failure in my subconscious.
Also, the pity part -- Badly needing a root-canal for 6 months and being in pain everyday, I once convinced a hot dentist at a public hospital to skip her lunch inorder to do a fix-up procedure that would buy me 3 more months of waiting time. When you don't have much, you need every trick in the book to survive -- whether that's 'moral' or not.

Although I made it to a first-world country, I do have my doubts, lots of them -- if I will make it. As I prepare to welcome my first child and embrace fatherhood, I am also very concerned if I would get caught up in the trap of mortgage, bills and responsibility. I am scared. I'm alone. But when I read your story, it gave me a lot of hope -- I can't imagine the pressure of having $47 in your pocket and one week of time to either do a sale or having to see your kids starve. Salute to you sir! I hope I can find the same resourcefulness and grit you had building your business and your life from the ground up. Reading your story makes it easier to believe that the rest of my dreams can be accomplished.

It would be a dream of dreams come true if I could build a business like yours that affords me travel to far-off countries, meet new people and see other cultures. Just like you, I have no one to give me seed capital or tell me what to do and it's hard to believe at times that the decisions I am making now will matter in the end. E.g. I moved from a bigger city which had a great nightlife and food and fun and a lot of career opportunities to a much smaller one with no fun or nightlife and a very small job market. I took this job solely because I can work only 1-2 hrs a day and have the rest of the day to myself, while still making a similar salary. I am investing in that part of me that believes I can build a business in my spare time, but I have no idea HOW I will do any of it, just vague clues. I am giving up career opportunities that I would have in a bigger city and in 10 years the scales could tip either way. Having you, someone who built a big business from the ground up acknowledge my story is such a morale booster for the side that keeps chirping in my head "It's Possible!" .

Thank You sir for taking the time to write to me and your words of encouragement. Knowing I have people like you to turn to advice or help when I will inevitable be failing initially is a HUGE thing for me. I appreciate your kind words with all my heart.

And I am curious about the religion you mentioned about. I have been a religious fanatic (for multiple religions!), a sworn atheist, an agnostic and now, I don't know what to call it -- but I do believe there is certainly way more than meets the eye, yet I reject the notion of a bearded man in the sky. If you could DM me more about the religion you talked about in your story, I would be very happy to hear about it! Thank You again and have a great day!
 

GPM

Platinum Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Summit Attendee
Speedway Pass
Oct 25, 2012
777
3,418
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Canada
You have done it and beat the odds before and got what you were focused on. Keep that up and there is no way you won't succeed again!

No one can take your drive and tenacity from you. You built that, that is you!

I would wish you all the success in the world, but you don't need it. You got this!
 
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DarkKnight

Bronze Contributor
Jan 3, 2020
24
216
49
Hi, @DarkKnight from SEA! Your story is aspiring. I feel you, man (Though, my situation was not as bad.) Living poor in the third world country, full of corruption. Nothing we can change except ourselves. Love your laser-focused and perseverance. May you achieve your goal, my fellow.
Good luck brother, I know your pain! But like you said, the answers only lie within us all.
 

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