Secrets to Your Success: I Am Who I Am Because of My Mom

Mom changed your diapers, kissed your boo-boos, and said you could do anything you ever wanted. She instilled qualities, like humor, strength, and courage. She believed in you and ultimately has influenced your life and career. These four successful women say they are who they are because of dear Mom.

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Comedian Tig Notaro says her mom was a "wild person," doing anything to make her laugh. "I think that I definitely got her sensibility as far as comedy," explains Tig.

Lisa Leslie, a former WNBA player, says her mom was her first and is still her biggest role model. Even when kids would tease Lisa for being tall and skinny, Lisa says her mom would tell her, "Lisa, some people grow on the inside and some people grow on the outside, and we've been blessed enough to do both." Lisa's mom encouraged her to hold her head up high. Lisa says her mom worked to empower her to feel good about herself and be thankful.

When Kristen Trattner, a cancer survivor and co-owner of Nickel Diner, was sick, her mom would ask what should could do to make her feel better. Kristen says they would write songs, play music, draw, and cook together. She describes her mom as the "world's worst cook." "So there was this funny moment," Kristen says, "where it was all turning out wrong, but it didn't matter."

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"She didn't just say you could do anything, like you can fly or you can be a nurse or you can be a doctor," says Kat Cole, president of Cinnabon. "It was like you can do anything." Kat says she was lucky to have a mother who believed in her, because when you hear that encouragement, "you really start to believe it."

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