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10 Universal Sayings! You can do it

Chapter 4: You can do it

You’ll never know how successful you can be

if you don’t start doing it now.

Otherwise, you will limit your life

and always feel sorry for why you didn’t try.

See an obstacle as something to be overcome,

not as an excuse to do nothing.

There are really a lot of people

who never try to do anything

because they are always afraid

fear of failure,

fear of criticism,

fear of ridicule,

fear of not having enough experience and skills.

I want to tell them,

“Set a goal and work towards it.

You can do it!”.

A student asked me at a university party:

“What is the most important thing

that a young person like you should know?”.

And I replied,

“You need to

instill the I can do it philosophy.

Whatever you want to do,

you can do it.”

The girl looked surprised.

Perhaps no one had ever spoken

to her like that before,

and I am grateful that she gave me the opportunity

to make a positive impact on a young person like her.

“You can do it” is an important saying

and philosophy in my life.

I am a lucky person

because from a young age,

my father used that philosophy to encourage me.

This life motto has helped me successfully apply it

to boost the morale of Amway distributors globally.

I often say “You can do it”

to the people I care about to awaken their potential.

“You can do it” has become the catchphrase in my family,

creating a positive influence on every member.

Growing up during the Great Depression,

belief in my own abilities was instilled in me.

My family had to leave the house

where I spent the best years of my childhood

because my father became unemployed

and could no longer keep the house.

We had to move into the attic of my grandparents’ house,

and I remember sleeping right

under the beams.

We lived there for about five years

during the worst of the crisis.

However, those were not “dark” days for a boy like me.

I have cousins ​​who live nearby.

There aren’t many cars here,

so we can play football on the street.

The ball was kicked so much

that it had to be patched with rags

and wrapped with extra loops of string

because then we couldn’t get a new ball.

The lack of money “shackled” us in those days.

I started taking newspaper deliveries

to earn some extra money

and trying to save up money to buy a used bike.

Ten cents then that’s a lot of money.

I remember a man who came

to our house to sell magazines

and cried because he couldn’t come home

until the last book was sold out.

My father honestly told him

that we don’t have a dime in our house right now.

However, my father kept encouraging me by saying,

“You can do it”.

My father is a very optimistic person.

He believes in the power of positive thoughts.

He still tried to convince me to believe it

even though his life was not as successful as expected.

He always said, “You will do great things.

I will do better than dad.

You will go further,

be able to set foot in places I have never been.

You’ll see things I’ve never seen before.”

As for my mother,

to be honest,

she was not very optimistic.

However, after my father died,

she said to me:

“I decided I would have to be optimistic when you visit,

because you won’t come to hear me complain.”

From that day on, my mother started

to think more optimistically.

She admired my father’s faith

and followed his example.

I feel so proud of my mom!

That further strengthens my belief that being optimistic

and positive is also a decision.

We can learn to be optimistic

and positive

if we focus on finding the good in life and in others.

As an optimist,

you will spread this attitude of life

to many people around,

so how can they feel pessimistic

and negative when around you?

I consider myself lucky and happy

to have grown up in a positive environment.

I highlighted the value of an upbeat,

positive atmosphere in my talk entitled

The Three As:



and Atmosphere.

Everyone takes action,

but those actions should be rooted in a positive attitude.

And an optimistic attitude is developed

depending on the atmosphere

or environment we choose to live and work in.

The atmosphere that has protected

and nurtured me is the warm love of my family.

Thanks to that,

I still found happiness in the darkest times of the Great Depression

and believed in a brighter tomorrow.

I was also fortunate

to attend Grand Rapids Catholic Private High School.

My parents had to work hard

to pay for my school fees.

However, I studied just enough to pass.

The most disappointing person is my father.

He decided to let me study

as an electrician at a public school.

Then I soon found myself missed an opportunity

because of laziness.

I decided to go back to Grand Rapids

and told my parents

that I was going to work some odd jobs

to pay for my tuition.

This time, I studied more seriously

and got better grades.

I was even elected class president the following year.

To this day,

I am truly grateful to have attended a school

that reinforced my lessons in faith,


and diligence.

When I decided to return to Grand Rapids

and offered to pay for my own tuition,

it was the first time I made an important decision.

I realized I didn’t like being an electrician.

Perhaps my father’s foresight guided my life

by sending me to Grand Rapids.

This school has the respectable teacher

that I mentioned at the beginning of the book,

who wrote in my guestbook the words that are simple

but I still can’t forget,

the words changed my life:

“To the young man who has the talent

to lead in the kingdom of God”

another affirmative way of expressing the “You can do it” philosophy.

It was also in this school that I met Jay Van Andel

and began a lifelong friendship.

Jay’s father owns a car dealership.

So, during the difficult years of the crisis,

he was one of only two students in the school

who went to school by car.

I can still remember the scene

where everyone rushed into Jay’s car after school.

I pay him twenty-five cents a week to hitchhike to school.

The conversations we had during the hitchhiking

reflected our youth’s dream

of a bright future,

laying the foundation for our future business careers.

We believe we can do it.

Looking back on some of the important events in my life

such as starting some businesses,

getting married,

and enjoying life with children

and grandchildren,

all are based on the philosophy of “You can do it.” Okay”.

During my school days,

Jay and I agreed to do business together.

We used to open a flight training school,

then switch to a fast food stand

without any experience.

And finally, we started Amway in 1959,

in our basement.

So, out of that optimistic atmosphere,

I became an optimist.

With my father’s words of encouragement still ringing in my ears:

“You can do it”,

I feel confident that I can.

My wife Helen calls me an adventurer,

and as evidenced

by my taking my family around the world,

to places she never imagined she would go.

I just said, “Go there! Try this!”.

In my opinion,

the attitude of viewing life as an adventure is the best description

of the type of optimist who lives in the spirit of

“You can do it”.

The success achieved in the business is far beyond my dreams.

However, the greatest happiness is the feeling of satisfaction

when using your natural ability

to bring business opportunities to millions of people,

create jobs for thousands of people who have

to shoulder family responsibilities,

and share the results of my success through philanthropy with Helen.

Drive into the countryside near Ada,


and you’ll easily catch sight of the mile-long Amway office

and manufacturing complex.

At the entrance are fifty pillars

with national flags representing the countries

to which Amway has branched.

This is Amway’s headquarters.

This image shows that Amway has gained credibility,

Jay and I are the visionary entrepreneurs

who planned for that success.

That’s bullshit!

We’re really just two people trying to make a living

for ourselves and help our families like everyone else.

We never dreamed that one day we would own a company

with billions of dollars in annual sales,

branches in dozens of countries,

thousands of employees and millions of distributors worldwide.

We are fortunate

to have grown up in an atmosphere of optimism and natural talent.

Our business is built with heart and mind,

fueled by the

“You can do it” philosophy,

and with confidence fueled by love,


and love,

positive of parents,


In the early 1970s, I gave a talk called Try or Cry

a decades-old “campaign” to encourage people

to realize the benefits of a negative outlook.

I share with the audience that there are two types of people:

one is those who are willing to try,

the other is the ones

who stand aside

and watch and “weep”,

lamenting their fate,

and criticizing those

who accept them then take the challenge.


the latter trend has become a widespread phenomenon.

I also share with the audience a long list

of investment projects that Jay

and I have worked on,

and how we have continued

to try after failures, such as:

business plan in the field of aviation,

fast food restaurant,

project to import products made

from mahogany wood,

manufacture wooden rocking horses for children,

sell bomb shelters…

Demand for learning to drive Airplanes did not “explode”

as one might think after World War II.

We had to dump dozens of trays of burgers

because they were baked in the oven for too long

due to the lack of professional fast food chefs.

A whole bunch of wooden wheels and springs

for the production of toy horses were left in storage

because a toy company launched a more eye-catching model made of plastic.

But we continue to try our best in other areas.

We knew nothing about chemistry,




or people management when we founded Amway.

Our first experience was testing the labeling machine,

but it put more labels on the walls,

the floor,

and us than on the boxes.

But today, the company employs thousands of people manufacturing

thousands of products

that are sold by millions of independent distributors.

Today, the saying

“You can do it” has become the slogan

of Amway’s business around the world.

In Japan, China,

and other Asian countries

where Amway has branches,

you can hear distributors cheering

to each other: “You can do it.”

They asked me to autograph books

with the words “You Can Do It”.

That optimistic statement turned into cheers gathered

in the Asian branches

ASIAN. It spreads around the world,

reaching people who are often told

that they can’t do anything right.

When Amway expanded into the Russian market,

that time while I was at home in Florida, USA,

I was asked to call from home

and say to about six hundred people attending

a business conference in Russia,

“You can can do”.

Our people there recounted

that it was the most exciting conference they had ever attended.

They were very interested in this business idea.

The audience jumped to their seats and cheered

the atmosphere was more like a football game

than at a business conference.

No wonder the affirmation

“You can do it” has such a strong influence on them!

As mentioned,

my children also grew up with the philosophy of

“You can do it”.

I always teach my kids that they can do whatever

they feel like aiming for or can do.

We will support,

believe and cheer them on.

After I retired,

my eldest son, Dick,

replaced me as president of Amway.

Dick led Amway’s expansion into the world market.

In fact, Dick had held the position of head of Amway’s international business

a few years earlier.

Then Dick decided to run for governor of Michigan in 2006.

When Dick told me of his decision to run,

I told him, “Son, this is not the right time to do that,

do you think? Is that so?”.

I warn that it will have to compete

with the Democratic candidate

in a state where the party is dominant.

Dick understood that, but he doubted his ability

and decided to run for office.

On the night of the announcement,

Dick received only 10% of the total vote.

Everyone was trying to be upbeat

when Dick entered the room.

Dick informs everyone that

I just called the governor to congratulate her on her victory.

We tried to be hopeful,

but Dick examined the actual numbers in the constituencies

and conceded the race was over.

Immediately after the election,

I visited Dick for a moment.

Dick said the time running for the election campaign was the best time.

It’s met a lot of great people in Michigan,

and it’s been such a fun experience!

Despite his defeat that time,

Dick never doubted his ability

to win the election.

The “You can do it” attitude is evident in everything it does.

And my second son, Dan,

decided to start his own career after serving

as Amway’s manager for many years.

Leaving the company is a brave step,

armed with a “You can do it” attitude.

Today, Dan is a very successful boss

another testament to the “You can do it” mindset.

When it comes time to have a family member run

the operation of the Orlando Magic football team.

My daughter Cheri and son-in-law Bob both have an interest in sports,

agreeing to move to Orlando for three years to take over the job.

Although they have no experience in this field,

they have no doubts about their abilities.

So they took over the team for more than three years and eight months!

The youngest son, Doug,

attended Purdue University,

majoring in business and management,

with plans to eventually run Amway

which is what Doug is doing now.

Doug joined the Purdue football team

and played as an extra quarterback

because he wanted to demonstrate his confidence growing up

in a “You Can Do It” environment!

Therefore, parents need to create an optimistic,

positive atmosphere at home to encourage their children

to do what they intend to do.

One of the greatest experiences

My experience in adopting this philosophy was ten years ago,

when I decided to expedite the merger

of the two largest hospitals in Grand Rapids.

There used to be fierce competition

between the two hospitals

for example, if one had a neonatal room,

the other had to have it too.

A hospital is considering building a facility in a new location.

As the chairman of the board of directors for the other hospital,

I suggested: “Ladies and gentlemen,

before they start construction,

I think we should really discuss the merger

between the two hospitals.

The two are only about five kilometers apart,

and if we want to provide the best service to the community,

we should merge the two hospitals together.”

The hospital director said

Me: “You know, we’ve tried to push this before.”

I said I knew it but times have changed

and now I want to try it again.

So he agreed and became the first to support me.

I thought, “If this idea becomes a reality,

this will be a big hospital.

This merger will probably be the biggest success

I’ve ever had, forever!”

I encouraged the directors of the two hospitals

to agree to work together

without worrying about the number of seats each side

would hold on the board of directors after the merger,

or who would be the chairman.

We took small steps one after another and got more

and more approval until finally the two hospitals were merged.

At that time, the Federal Trade Commission interfered with the plan

and accused us of deliberately restricting competition.

They singled out me as an oppressor of free enterprise

and asked how I encouraged the trend!

But I convinced them

and the arbitrator finally made a decision in our favor.

It’s another example of a “You can do it” attitude

no matter how great the challenge.

Thanks to the support of the presidents of

both hospitals and many others,

the two hospitals are larger today than before,

each dedicated to serving the different needs of the community.

We have the equipment,


and staff to meet the needs of high-quality medical service,

becoming a “general medical center”

which is the largest employer in the region.

“You can do it” is also the spirit of America

and the free enterprise system. Helen

and I recently contributed to the People’s President Gallery in Mount Vernon in the hope

that it will help preserve and inspire the respect

and gratitude the country has

for President George W. President George Washington

and those who fought for freedom.

The exhibits are a vivid reminder of this great leader

who played a pivotal role in his quest

to freedom and founding the country.

In his youth, President Washington was a brave horseman

who helped explore the wild lands.

He gradually became a brave leader on the battlefield

and became a wise president,

the first president of the United States of America.

And what’s interesting

to a businessman like me is that President Washington ran six businesses

at Mount Vernon at the same time.

I once had the honor of being a narrator in a symphony performance

of The Portrait of Lincoln,

conducted by Aaron Copland.

If you haven’t had a chance to listen to this song,

I can tell you it’s a mix of tones

inspirational music with the “golden words” of President Abraham Lincoln.

He is a perfect example of the “You Can Do It” philosophy.

Having lived in a shabby house

with only a small room on the plains of Indiana,

although he only attended a village school for a few years,

he was elected President of the United States.

Before assuming the presidency,

he had failed to own a shop

and failed many times in the race for the US Congress.

During President Reagan’s visit to the ranch,

I found that his greatest inspiration was the American spirit

and his ethos of strong individualism,


and hard work.

When I was lucky enough to be invited

to a White House dinner,

I learned that during the meal,

anyone who asked President Reagan

about politics received the answer:

“The office is closed.”

And he lightened the mood with a joke.

The President radiates confidence and optimism,

never seeming to think

or worry about anything.

He knew he could do it!

On the contrary,

all of us must have met pessimists,

or complainers.

In addition to being optimistic,

we also need to encourage people around us

to have such an attitude.

Our positive,

optimistic spirit plays a key role in maintaining an environment full

of promising opportunities

for the next generation to succeed.

I am a supporter of Partner Worldwide.

This is an organization of economists entrepreneurs, ranchers,

and anyone running their own business in partnership

with people in another country

usually a third world country.

American associates will mentor their partners in other countries

and help them operate more successfully.

Partner Worldwide also has a division

that specializes in providing small loans

to help people in need buy sewing machines,



or any other machine

that helps them be more productive.

More than half of the people

who receive Partner Worldwide’s help

have increased their number of employees thanks

to improved work efficiency.

Partner Worldwide hopes

to find millions of such mentors.

The interesting thing is that the mentors themselves are entrepreneurs,

they believe that the people

they help can do it.

They are the people with the “can-do” attitude,

have achieved success

and recruited “can-do” people to work for them.

Cultivating the spirit of “You can do it” in others

and yourself is very important.

Sometimes it is the only factor that leads people

to accomplish their goals.

Once, the Internal Revenue Service assigned several civil servants

to work full-time at Amway.

I used to joke with the guys at the tax office

that I would actually have them work in the hallway

instead of arranging their own room

in the early days of working at our company.

Finally, one of my employees said,

“You have to give them a decent office.”

I ask why? Let them sit in the hallway.

I don’t want to make them comfortable!”

But in the end we arranged a private office for them.

One day, I asked a tax officer

who had worked at our company for many years:

“Are you still working here?”.

He smiled and replied,

“I’m your partner.”

Imagine watching!

The tax officer is my partner!

With a “You can do it” attitude,

he is steadfast,

regardless of the working environment.

I have great respect for your responsible work ethic.

You’ll never know how successful

you can be if you don’t start doing it now.

Otherwise, you will limit your life

and always feel sorry for

why you didn’t try.

See an obstacle as something to be overcome,

not as an excuse to do nothing.

If you try and fail,

you will have more strength,

courage to know how far you have done,

then keep trying again,

or next time will choose a different path,

or get new job with stronger confidence.

Think about what you can do and try it.

Must “dare to think, dare to do”!

There are really a lot of people

who never try to do anything

because they are always afraid

fear of failure,

fear of criticism,

fear of ridicule,

fear of not having enough experience and skills.

I want to tell them,

“Set a goal and work towards it.

You can do it!”.

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