Narratively

True Motivational Stories

In this collection we've gathered our favorite motivational stories from compelling characters who inspire and move us. A grieving mother who picked herself up and decided to make sure her daughter did not die in vain. A taxicab driver who saw an open seat in the statehouse and thought...why not me? An ex-con who turned his life around, thanks to the motivational power of running. Scroll below to dive into those stories and many more. Enjoy these true motivational stories? At Narratively we focus on ordinary people with extraordinary stories. For more human stories, boldly told, visit our homepage, follow us on Facebook, and sign up for our newsletter here. PS: Moved to share your own real-life motivational stories? We're always on the lookout for ordinary people with extraordinary stories. If you've got our next story subject, send us a tip!

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How a Brutal Mafia Enforcer Became a Deadly Serious Marathoner

One of the Mumbai underworld’s most feared gunmen, Rahul Jadhav spent years running from the law. Now he runs for absolution.

How Treating People With Brain Injuries Helped Me Forgive My Mother

After a lifetime of resentment, working with other T.B.I. patients finally helped me understand the riddle that is my mother's mind.

This Quadriplegic Daredevil Invented His Own Tech to Race at 130mph

After a devastating injury as a teenager, Mario Bonfante Jr. now races using equipment he built in his bedroom, and he’s ready to help others do the same.

After Years of Tumors, Growing a Baby Instead

Doctors said I probably wouldn't live to see my child grow up, but I still wanted to be a mom.

My Wheelchair Glamour Shoot

As a disabled woman, society has always told me I’m not sexy. I decided to prove them all wrong.

How a Chinese Farmer’s YouTube Videos Help My Mom Through Cancer

Chemo left her exhausted and depressed, but Mom found comfort in an obscure vlogger who reminds her of home.

This Liberal Cab Driver Is Also West Virginia’s Unlikeliest Politician

How one scruffy, folk-singing hippie took on the political establishment in Trump Country…and won.

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The Grieving Mom Fighting for a Healthcare System That Actually Works

Amy Vilela lost her daughter when she couldn’t afford the medical bills. When her Congressman told her he wouldn’t support universal healthcare, Amy said, “I’m running.”

How It Feels to Be the Biggest Woman at a Clothing Swap

Great, actually.