How MyPillow CEO overcame addiction to reach success

Mike Lindell joins Yahoo Finance’s Zack Guzman and Kristin Myers, along with The Brewer Group CEO Jack Brewer, to explain how he overcame a crack addiction to become a successful CEO.

Yahoo Finance’s Zack Guzman starts this interview highlighting the success that Mike has built up so far: MyPillow makes all its products in America, has 11 retail locations, has 1500 workers, has sold over 46 million pillows, and has generated over $250 million in revenue last year. Mike’s new book, What Are the Odds? From Crack Addict to CEO, is all about how Mike overcame tremendous trials and tribulations to become the highly successful businessman he is now.

Mike was a crack addict

Most people don’t know that Mike was on two parallel tracks when he invented the Mypillow. He was a cocaine addict first, and then a crack addict. When he was a child, his parents divorced when he was seven and was put into a new school where he didn’t fit in, which meant that his self-worth went down.

Since he didn’t want to get rejected, he either didn’t talk to people, or he would show off. Later, he found that cocaine would help him talk to people. For many years, he was a “functioning addict” until he started crack cocaine.

Even with his addictions, he was an entrepreneur. For example, his sister flooded her third-story apartment with a waterbed in the 1980s, so started a carpet cleaning business.

He didn’t stop his addictions until God helped him stop on September 9th, 2009.

The MyPillow success

After he stopped his addictions, he had a hard time selling his pillow, and his company was about to be taken. So, in 2011 Mike decided that if none of the box stores were going to take his pillows, he would make an infomercial. So, he went to film it in front of a live audience. But, as Mike says, “remember, I wasn’t very good at talking.” Things went so badly that the producer texted that “This guy is the worst I’ve ever seen, he will never make it on TV.”

However, after all these issues, the infomercial launched in the middle of the night October 7, 2011, when Mike had 10 employees. Forty days later, Mike had 500 employees due to the success of the infomercial.

Mike’s advice to get a business off the ground

What is Mike’s advice to get a business off the ground? Mike answered that you must be able to recognize a deviation, and react to both the good and the bad deviations. He also emphasized that if you are getting into a service or an invention, there is no better time like now because we have ‘the best consumer confidence ever right now.” So come on,” Mike said, “take that chance and have faith.”

However, “you must have passion for what you’re doing, or forget about it, why waste your time?” Towards that, people come up to Mike and say “Mike, you work all the time, why do you do that?” And Mike’s reaction is, “Addiction was work, I love what I’m doing!”

Made in America

Mike says that it’s important to make products in Amerca. He looks at his employees and says “they are like a big family, and that means a lot to me, they are building careers here.” Plus, producing the MyPillows in America affects many other aspects of American business. For example the American-made fabric for MyPillows that’s made in the U.S.

Mike gives an example of a snowmobile company that left America and went overseas. He said, it wasn’t just the company that left, the fasteners, the snowmobile skis, and other related businesses followed the company – so America lost over 20,000 jobs.

But, Mike was asked, isn’t it more expensive to manufacture products in America? Surprisingly, Mike’s answer is that “It’s actually not. When you get products overseas, you are at their mercy. It takes 90-120 days to get the products. And, you have to give the overseas money upfront, so your money is tied up. And, if you don’t need the product now, or if you need more, you end up air-shipping the product in, and you are right back to where you would be if you had made the products in America.” Plus, Mike says, “I get to look at every product that comes off my assembly line, just like each was for my only customer.’

The Level Headed podcast

Mike is starting a podcast, “Level Headed” with Jack Brewer. The focus for this podcast is a “levelheaded” approach to many of the divisive issues that affect our country. As Jack said, “all you hear is negativity all the time,” so Mike and Jack want to use their voices to give people hope and inspiration instead.

And of course, Mike is quite an inspiration since he went from being “a crackhead to being one of the most successful CEOs in America.” That is the American dream, that is the kind of story they want to emphasize.

Addiction affects everyone in this country

Mike says that “addiction affects everyone in this country, no matter how many forks you eat with.” “Everyone is either an addict or knows an addict. And, because of that, people are dying right now.” Because of this, Mike feels that the drug crisis is the “opportunity for the biggest revival in the United States.” It will “bring people back to God and unite people to stop addictions because we are all in this together.”

For Mike’s part, all the proceeds from Mike’s book will go towards his Lindell Recovery Network™, which will “absolutely wipe out addiction.” In fact, Mike is self-publishing the book – even buying his own paper. And, his books won’t be sold in the big box stores, because Mike “wants no middleman, since he wants all the proceeds to go to his network.”

Mike also mentioned that he was with President Trump when he signed the Opioid Bill. Mike is amazed at how Trump has “rolled back all the bureaucracy.” So, for example, a lot of states have a requirement that people have to have four years of college before they can help addicts. Mike’s reaction is to this is that “There is nobody in college that is learning how to treat an addict. I want an addict that made it through to the other side, they are my hope.”

Mike continues to give hope to all

Mike continues to give hope to all through his book that will inspire addicts, entrepreneurs, and those that are struggling with life. He is also going to give others inspiration through Jack and his podcast, plus he will give addicts hope through his Lindell Recovery Network™. A true inspiration for all.


Watch video here:

Then, get Mike Lindell’s new book now at: