Who are you?
I am Bruce Miller, owner of Miller Motors in New Orleans.
What’s your story?
I was a high school dropout. I was a smart kid, but my parents didn’t care about
education – my Mom had me when she was 15 and my Dad was 20. They
provided for me, but they never loved me. I dropped out and I ran with
somewhat of a street gang.
One day, when I was 19 years old, I went to a funeral– it was the 12th funeral of a friend I’d been to and I remember realizing that day that it could be my funeral next. I knew there was more for me out there.
I turned everything around and found my relationship with God. The strangers in my church embraced me and I felt that love I had been missing. I got married and became a father by the time I was 21. I put a lot of hard work into the car business and quickly found I was good at it. I sold 722 cars in my first year. I got promoted fast and became a finance manager at 23, then sales manager at 25, running multiple stores by the time I was 30.
While I was having this success in business, it seemed like every time I got good
news, bad news followed. I had two sons and a daughter, but I lost both my
parents and found out I had cancer. I came through that test of faith and I didn’t let it stop me. I became a managing partner, but then found out my cancer had returned – they found 15 tumors in my stomach. On top of that, the pandemic hit and I lost my job at a time when no one was hiring someone of my calibre.
With all this uncertainty, I said, you know what? I’m going to start my own
business. That was my dream when I was younger and I came back to it. I
opened up my own used car lot and three years later everything’s going
smoothly, I’m living a good life and I’m professionally satisfied, and we’re already growing to more car lots.
How do you cope with hard times?
Even when you’re feeling invincible, things can come along to test you. They
might push you to give up. Success depends on how you deal with those things
and whether you let them break you. Each step forward makes a difference, so I
focus on living right and taking those steps. What I’ve found is that what seems
like a test can actually be a gift from God, freeing you up for the next success
that is coming your way. You just have to get through those hard times and focus on what’s most important to you. For me, that’s my family and my career.
What’s your outlook on life?
I’m known for one mantra: All gas, no brakes. It’s kind of my catchphrase. That’s
how I approach life, with the irrational confidence to just hit the gas and keep
going. I look for opportunities to bet on myself and take them, maintaining a
positive outlook and praying for success.
What advice would you give to anyone, regardless of the circumstances?
Don’t settle on the road to your dreams. Once you put the right foundations in
your life, rapid blessings will come. Live with faith, work hard, be a good person – and God does his part.
Article from Issue 86 – The Rainbow Issue. See more