Conor McGregor, 30, went from rags to riches by dreaming big. The former UFC featherweight and lightweight champion literally went from welfare to millionaire, by winning MMA championships.
McGregor worked as an apprentice plumber in Dublin and decided to quit his job and still a teenager became a professional mixed martial arts fighter. Young Conor followed his dream and never looked back. He later said simply he ‘’had no love for plumbing’’.
McGregor is a strong believer in visualizing, seeing himself succeed and then making it happen. He told CNBC Make It, “Always visualize. See yourself winning, achieving. Visualize good things. Make your dreams fall into reality”.
At 19, Conor won his first two matches and became the top fighter in Ireland in five years, losing only two of 14 MMA fights. Keeping his focus on training and fighting lower level MMA matches he struggled to make ends meet and survived on welfare money for several years. Even then, he was visualizing good things for himself, seeing himself winning his matches and signing that UFC contract.
His dreams got him through hard times and in 2013, the much dreamed of UFC contract was finally signed. A few days after cashing his final welfare cheque, McGregor won his first UFC fight with a $60,000 purse.
In two short years he had his first UFC championship belt and the top ranked in his weight class. The rest, as they say, is history. Two UFC championships in two weight classes (featherweight and lightweight). He later lost both titles and his most recent lightweight fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov in 2018. The $3 million he received paled in comparison to the reported $100 million for his failed effort against boxer Floyd Mayweather in 2017 which, together with his $14 million in endorsements from brands Monster Energy and Reebok put him at number 12 on the 2018 Forbes Celebrity 100 top earners.
As always, McGregor continues using his visualization techniques, now also dreaming his dreams into business success. 2018 was a busy year for him, he launched August McGregor, his own line of clothing and his own brand of Irish whiskey, Proper No. Twelve, launched in Ireland and the USA in September 2018 and reportedly sold out in two weeks. The name he says “pays homage to where I grew up“. Crumlin, a suburb of Dublin mostly referred to after its postal code “Dublin 12” and very dear to his heart.