Our generation, unfortunately, is so buried in social media and technology that we forget that success is not about the number of followers you have or the number of re-tweets that you get. “#Goals” is frequently used when kids admire those “Instagram-famous” people with the nicest cars, purses, and shoes, but I want to challenge this notion.
Entrepreneurs are “goals”, overachievers are “goals”, people who challenge the status quo are “goals”, people who relentlessly follow their dreams are “goals”. These are trailblazers who carve their own lanes and never let anyone tell them, “No”. And here are some of them who’ve landed on the Forbes 30 Under 30 List for 2016.
Among these winners I feel a special affinity to is a duo from UCLA, the founders of Enrou. I feel so humbled that we’ve come from the same world-renowned university and probably have a couple mutual friends. The thing most striking, however, is that we are the SAME AGE.
The fact that all of these young adults on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list- some of whom have not even reached a quarter of their lives and all of whom are under 30 years old- have already accomplished so much…completely baffles my mind. Reading the stories of those in the Forbes 30 Under 30 motivates me to relentlessly follow my dreams and expand my own brand, as I hope it does for you.
I’ve compiled a short list of people in music (I love hip hop), retail, and entertainment who I’ve watched from afar rise up the ranks. I wish I could feature them all, but here are some of the future leaders that are on their way to changing the world.
Ashley Graham: 28, Model. Breaking the mold on the media’s standards of “beauty”, this size 14 plus-size model landed 5 magazine covers last year, including a bikini ad in the 2015 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.
Kristina Bazan: 22, Fashion blogger. Started blogging at 18 and now has an international following. Recently named the brand ambassador for L’Oreal.
Ryan & Adam Goldston: 28, Cofounders of Athletic Propulsion Labs. USC college athletes and twin brothers found this brand of fashionable athletic sportswear – with now numerous technology patents- out of their dorm room. Revenues are up 3500% each year.
Ann Wang & Jessica Willison: 24, Cofounders of Enrou. Enrou is a site where consumers can buy products from developing communities around the world. They also help those artisans find organizations for training and education.
O’Shea Jackson Jr.: Actor & Rapper, 24. Stellar performance in “Straight Outta Compton” as his father, Ice Cube. The film touches on race, the FBI, the LA Riots, HIV, and rap surrounding the group N.W.A.
Kehlani: 20, Singer-songwriter. Grammy nominated for 2016 Best Urban Contemporary Album off her mix-tape (!), “You Should Be Here”
The Weeknd: 25, Singer. Had a huge year with the release of his album “Beauty Behind the Madness”. Headlined festivals, such as Made in America in Philadelphia, Lollapalooza in Chicago, & Hard Summer in Pomona. Performed at the annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.
Metro Boomin: 22, Producer. This young producer started practicing on his drum machine in middle school. He now produces for hop-hop heavyweights, like Future, Ludacris, Gucci Mane, & Drake.