The journey from being called a sissy to becoming India’s highest paid motivational speaker

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Kolkata: “Today you all are watching me not because I am smarter than any of you, or I am more talented than any of you, no, certainly not! I am speaking here in front of you because I have made more mistakes and perhaps seen more failures, rejections, humiliations than any of you!”

An ex-army officer, an actor, a motivational speaker and a theatre artist, Mohammed Ali Shah visited Kolkata for a few days when eNewsroom caught him and talked to him about his life and career. A complete changed person from his childhood, he is now one of the most famous motivational speakers in the country. “In my childhood I was very underconfident, shy and timid and in other words they would call me a very sissy character,” shares Agent Vinod actor.

Being a faculty member of the Whistling Woods International Institute of film, art and media, in Mumbai, Ali Shah has also delivered speeches at reputed platforms like the TEDX talks, Josh talks among others. Technically, Ali is one of the highest paid motivational speakers in the country.

Listen to Mohammed Ali Shah, the motivational speaker



“You know, I was never chasing money or commerce, I was chasing art, I worked on my skills, being better than the best,” he said. Failing is not a mountain on the way of success but just another step of it is what he believes in. With this belief he has faced and conquered all rejections in life, emerging as one of the as successful men.

Ali fell in love with the army uniform at the age of 5, his father Lieutenant General Zamir Uddin Shah was in the army and he had huge respect for him. But his failures dimmed his chances to join the army as a child, but his hopes did not die. He kept on working hard and through many mistakes and appreciations, he made it. “This guy who failed consistently in his marching tests, the parade tests and was not allowed to participate in the passing out parade was selected to lead the Assam Rifle’s Marching Contingent on Rajpath, New Delhi, on January 26, 2008, which was the very last year of my Short Service Commission,” he confessed.

The nephew of legendary actor Naseeruddin Shah, Ali is also a Dastangoi, a storyteller.


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