Oprah Winfrey Infographics Biography


Oprah wasn’t always Oprah

At present, Oprah has become a household name in America, however, it’s not her real name. As back in 1991, she disclosed her childhood name in an interview with the American Academy of Achievement.

Upon being asked about the confusion, Oprah said ” I was born, as I said, in rural Mississippi in 1954. I was born at home. There were not a lot of educated people around and my name had been chosen from the Bible. My Aunt Ida had chosen the name, but nobody really knew how to spell it, so it went down as “Orpah” on my birth certificate, but people didn’t know how to pronounce it, so they put the “P” before the “R” in every place else other than the birth certificate. On the birth certificate it is Orpah, but then it got translated to Oprah, so here we are. But that’s great because Oprah spells Harpo backward. I don’t know what Orpah spells.”

Also, it is interesting to know that Harpo is the name of her on-screen husband in the 1985 film “The Color Purple.”


A turning point

Life was not easy in the neighborhood as conditions were very harsh for young Winfrey. However, things changed when she was sent to live with her father in Nashville. Living with a strict father, Oprah was told to follow rules, read books and pay attention to her studies. She was even required to learn new vocabulary words each day, which indeed helped her in her career. She excelled in studies, also participating in debate clubs, drama clubs, and student council.

Later Oprah won a full scholarship to Tennessee State University after participating in an Elks Club speaking contest. The following year she was invited to a White House Conference on Youth. She was then hired by the station to read afternoon newscasts.

While in her second year in college she was offered a job by Columbia Broadcasting System(CBS), which she denied. However, after turning down the offer twice, she took the job on the advice of her teacher. From there she never looked back and evolved as a media personality.


Oprah’s phenomenal achievement

Oprah has reached the pinnacle of success. Her life story is worth reading as it’s not every day that you come across individuals who tend to defy all the odds. Like most of the times, people come from an average background and achieve medium level success. But rising from poverty and becoming one of the most influential women in the world is something exceptional.

It even gives a ray of hope to ones who are still struggling with their present situation. As life can be tough and unfair but with the right attitude and a little bit luck, even average people can do wonders.

From Oprah’s interviews, we can decode many principles which she religiously follows. However, if we talk about the most important ones, then we come across three mantras, which may have contributed a lot towards her success.


# Listen to your inner-self

Both life and business are complex in nature and often one may get stuck. In such situations, Oprah has often advocated about listening to the inner voice. As she once recalled that it was only after aligning with her inner true self that she became really successful. She knew what she wanted to do from an early start and has always trusted her intuition. 

“Everybody has what I call this instinct, this inner voice. Every decision I’ve ever made that led me to the right space and place in my life, I got there because I relied on that inner voice.”


# Don’t be afraid to fail

With the uncertainty of the future, almost everyone struggles with the fear of failure. Though the difference between the achievers and non-achieves is that their will of succeeding is much greater than the fear of failure. So fear is natural and should not be neglected however one needs to take calculated risks depending on his/her capabilities and passion.

“I believe that one of life’s greatest risks is never daring to risk.”


# Gratitude is the Key

Now, this is one of the most important takeaways. As in this modern lifestyle, almost always the grass looks greener on the other side. We tend to count other people’s blessings while neglecting our own. Small issues are made big for no reason while depression has become a part of the modern lifestyle. The “Queen of all media” is well known for understanding the power of gratitude. She has often talked about the habit of gratitude and how it affects life.

“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”