Chicken Soup for the Soul

Today’s message is about persistence and the amazing things which can be achieved if you keep going and don’t give up. Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen are famous for bringing to life the book called ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’.

This is a book conceived by them to inspire, motivate and transform the readers. It is a book full of beautiful stories which warm the soul.

Tremendous challenges then success

Their journey was an incredibly difficult one but one which resulted in amazing success and transformation. They have impacted hundreds of millions of people with their message of love and hope.

I read this book 25 years ago and I still remember the feelings it evoked in me. At the time I had no idea how difficult the journey was for them to bring this to a worldwide audience but now I see as I build my business that if you believe and keep going amazing things can happen.

This is their story:

Chicken Soup for the Soul

“A book conceived by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen called Chicken Soup for the Soul has been translated into 40 languages and over 500 million copies of the series of books have been sold.

The company has travelled a long way from its humble origins, tracing the kind of underdog, believe-in-your-dreams arc that would work really well in a Chicken Soup book.

In 1992, teacher and motivational speaker Jack Canfield hatched a plan to compile all the stories he told on the self-help circuit.

He sought narratives that were “inspiring, healing, motivational, and transformational,” that would “open the heart and rekindle the spirit,” and when he shared his notion with his colleague Mark Victor Hansen (“a consummate promoter and salesman) he wanted in.

Hansen suggested that the collection comprise 101 stories, not 70, because “when I was a student ambassador in India, I learned that 101 is the number of completion.”

They penned the chapters, found an agent, chose a title (Canfield says the words Chicken Soup appeared to him in a dream in which the hand of God scrawled them across a chalkboard), and flew to New York to meet with publishers.  

They struck out. None of the publishers could relate to such “nicey-nice,” “positive” yarns. Without a guarantee that at least 20,000 copies of the book would sell, their agent explained, Chicken Soup for the Soul had little chance of seeing daylight. 

According to Canfield, he and Hansen began to place “commitment to buy” forms on the chairs at every motivational conference they attended.

As the rejection slips stacked up (the authors claim they received nearly 100 from “what seemed like every major publisher in America”), so did the inked promises from audience members.

Finally, more than 20,000 promises were enough to persuade Peter Vegso, of the Florida publishing house HCI, to roll out the first Chicken Soup for the Soul in the summer of 1993 and the rest is history.”

A great event

This week I had the privilege to inspire a room full of GPs with my 2-hour Mental Resilience Masterclass. The feedback was amazing, and I was so honoured to bring some techniques to help them deal with the huge pressure they are under.

The Masterclass was held at Doncaster Rugby Club and was a monthly meeting organised by Primary Care Doncaster. Some of the comments mentioned that the GPs could share the techniques with their patients which is really exciting.

This coming week I am delivering my Masterclass on behalf of Live and Learn to an organisation in Glasgow so I shall be flying from East Midlands airport to make it a pleasant experience.

Thoughts for the week:

  1. Are you thinking about giving up on something?
  2. Is this something which is worth fighting for?
  3. If it is then keep going, all successful people have struggled before breaking through.
  4. Get up one more time and keep believing.

Well that’s it for this week have a wonderful weekend and keep Believing.

Warm regards


Off the Wall – How to Develop World Class Mental Resilience available HERE (Special offer. Put in code 10POUND when prompted to receive a signed copy for £10 including postage and packing – UK only

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