From Underdog to Instagram Star

How Jordan Howlett Found His Calling

Courtesy of Youtube


If you haven't discovered Jordan Howlett, also known as Jordan_the_stallion8 on TikTok, you're missing out on a true internet phenomenon. Known for his quirky recipe reviews and clever food hacks, Jordan's content is crafted in the most unconventional of studios—his very own bathroom. His approach isn’t just relatable; it’s irresistibly engaging, transforming everyday thoughts into viral sensations. Four years after launching his TikTok account, Jordan has skyrocketed to fame, captivating audiences worldwide. In our latest feature for our YouTube video series, we delve into his inspiring TED Talk, "Success Isn't Linear," highlighting five pivotal insights that trace Jordan's remarkable path to stardom. Join us as we explore these lessons, each one shedding light on the resilience and creativity behind his success.

Courtesy of Facebook

Direct Your Dreams

With dreams of supporting his family, Jordan initially set his sights on becoming a professional baseball player—despite never having played the sport. Facing a dismal first practice and overwhelming odds (only 7% make it to D1 teams), he encountered nothing but discouragement. Yet, it was at a community college, subsisting on a $2-a-day budget and leftovers from friends, where Jordan's determination began to take root. His transformation was hard-won; he became faster, smarter, and more skilled. Although the coach told him not to waste his time trying to make the team,  his relentless training paid off —he proved to himself and the coach that he was more than capable. Jordan’s success was an amalgamation of many things, one being his mindset.  "I can't let my future be in the hands of people who don’t see my vision," he declared. When the odds were stacked against him, he still held on to this belief that he was going to succeed. It’s important to remember that we are the captain of our own ship and that no one other than ourselves should direct our dreams. 

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The Transformative Power of Personal Narratives

Jordan had succeeded and became a D1 baseball player. Next up: the major leagues. In 2020, he was gearing up to be drafted, but a global pandemic shut down the world and, in turn, Jordan’s dreams of becoming a major league baseball player. After recovering from extreme disappointment and self-proclaimed heartbreak, he decided that he wanted to share his story of triumph by producing a documentary, Dear Baseball, his love story to the sport. The documentary wove together his journey of ambition and resilience. After launching a sophisticated email campaign and leveraging Instagram, his story caught the eye of thousands, including celebrities like LeBron James. This unexpected pivot not only showcased his diverse talents but also redefined his identity far beyond the baseball diamond.

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The Power of Pivoting

Jordan Howlett’s path to stardom took a dramatic turn when his dreams of becoming a major league baseball player were replaced by an unexpected rise as a viral TikTok sensation. Embracing the world of social media, Jordan transformed his bathroom and kitchen into stages for recording humorous and relatable videos. As he honed his craft in producing engaging short-form content, his following soared, reaching a milestone of 2 million followers. "The audience is my boss," Jordan declares, underscoring his commitment to creating content that not only resonates with his viewers but also brings him personal joy and satisfaction. This successful pivot has been not only fulfilling but also financially rewarding, proving that with the right blend of passion and innovation, new opportunities can flourish.

Courtesy of TikTok

Expand your Horizons with New Skills

Jordan's TikTok videos have transformed him into the internet sensation he is today, but this rise to fame was no accident—it was the result of deliberate effort and strategic planning. Previously dedicated to a grueling regimen as a D1 baseball hopeful, Jordan pivoted when he realized his casual bathroom musings were delighting audiences. He meticulously planned his content production, committing to a set number of videos each day. With the support of a professional management team, Jordan transitioned from an aspiring athlete to a savvy businessman. He rapidly acquired new skills, adapting his approach to meet the demands of his expanding audience. This strategic shift not only broadened his impact but also led to collaborations with top-tier entertainers like Kevin Hart and iconic rapper Method Man from the Wu-Tang Clan, leveraging his platform to reach new heights in the entertainment industry.

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A Full Circle Moment

Since the age of 16, Jordan was repeatedly told that he would never set foot on a Major League Baseball field. Yet, he defied the odds by throwing the first pitch at a Chicago White Sox game, a testament to his determination. This full-circle moment underscores a vital lesson: perseverance is key, even when the path seems uncertain. While Jordan's initial dream of becoming a major league player did not materialize, his relentless pursuit led to the realization of an even greater goal—financially supporting his family. This journey exemplifies that with hard work and unwavering self-belief, dreams can manifest in the most unexpected ways. Jordan ends his talk by reminding his audience never to be afraid to dream, to embrace failure, and to accept that success rarely comes in a straight line

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