4 Major Gems On How to Succeed Against the Odds From ESSENCE Fest Dubran Speaker Steve Harvey
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As one of the hardest working men in showbiz, Steve Harvey will be hitting the speakers stage at the first annual ESSENCE Festival Durban.

Harvey has turned his comedic chops into a multi-million dollar empire as an actor, TV personality, talk show host, best-selling author, entrepreneur and humanitarian. He is the host of the Steve Harvey Morning Show radio program, and the popular TV shows Family Feud and Celebrity Family Feud, The Steve Harvey Show, Little Big Shots, and the new competition reality program Funderdome. He is everywhere.

But it was not always easy, and a combination of hard work and gumption has got him where is today. Here are some gems he has shared with the world that will give you a glimpse of what to expect at ESSENCE Fest Durban.

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He was once homeless but persevered: When Harvey first quit his job to take a chance at being a comedian, he found himself separated from his wife, on his own and living on as little as $50 a week—later becoming homeless.

“That was an ugly period, just very painful,” he told PEOPLE Magazine. At one point things got really bad: “I sat down and started crying, but a voice said, ‘If you keep going, I’m going to take you places you’ve never been,’” the star explains. “It was like God said, ‘Don’t quit, you’re almost there.'”

Let the fear fuel your dreams and work ethic: Success eventually followed and he has been on the climb towards success since then. But he continues to work non-stop because he never wants to end up there again. “I’m running from homelessness,” he told PEOPLE. “I can’t ever be in that position again. If my show gets canceled, I’ve got three more. I don’t have any free time, but I have 12 jobs.”

Build an incredible work ethic: Steve Harvey has 50,000 jobs and we don’t know how he does it. He told Ebony magazine that his work ethic is what keeps him going: “You have to have a work ethic that defies logic. If you don’t develop that, you can’t make it. You have to get up before anybody else is willing to get up; you have to stay up past anybody else’s bed time…You have to be ready to work.”

He credits his wife, Marjorie, for his success: “Everything I have iis because of this girl right here,” he told ESSENCE for his January 2014 cover story with his wife of almost ten years. “Every great man has a woman… I didn’t say successful man, I said great man. Yeah, maybe you’re successful if you sign a $16 million NBA contract. But greatness is when you’re the husband and father you’re supposed to be. When everyone surrounding you looks up to you, depends on you, and you come through for them. That’s greatness.” “Do you think Dr. Martin Luther King was anything without Coretta? You take Michelle out of Barack Obama’s equation, and he is a whole other dude out there.”

Catch Steve Harvey at ESSENCE Festival in Durban!