Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, better known to the world as Lady Gaga, has been an unstoppable force of innovation since the 2008 release of her debt single Just Dance. Lady Gaga's journey to pop icon has not been an easy one. Gaga has spoken openly about her struggles with mental health, physical health, rejection, and addiction. Gaga has achieved an unquestionable level of success and is a powerful source of inspiration for her "Little Monsters." Scroll down to see 10 rules Lady Gaga follows for success.
10 She's Not Afraid to be Herself
Gaga has spoken publicly about receiving continuous abuse from schoolyard bullies who criticized her looks and sky-high ambitions. A group of cruel NYU classmates even created a Facebook page dedicated to mocking her dreams of becoming a famous singer.
Now, Lady Gaga routinely speaks about the importance of self-love and staying true to yourself. Just one example—"At the end of the day, you won't be happy until you love yourself," Lady Gaga said during a speech. Inspiring words from Mother Monster!
9 She Takes Risks
From wearing dresses made entirely of meat, to staying in a huge egg-like vessel for 72 hours before her 2011 Grammy performance, Gaga has made a name for herself by pushing the boundaries of fashion, music, and the public imagination.
Gaga took another risk when, in 2016, she traded her high-fashion image and art haus sound for a stripped-down, 1970's soft-rock aesthetic in Joanne. However, Lady Gaga's readiness to take risks and continuously rethink her musical style and image has helped define her as an unstoppable creative force.
8 She Values Her Family
Its no secret that staying grounded is a formidable challenge for superstars. When you're shot into superstardom, extreme wealth, and constant surveillance in your early twenties, who can you rely on? Lady Gaga can fall back on her supportive family.
The Germanotta family helps Lady Gaga both with her musical career and her advocacy. Gaga has cited her parents and her sister as her biggest musical inspirations (and biggest fans!), and her mother is the co-founder of the Born This Way Foundation. Her aunt Joanne (an artist from whom Gaga takes her middle name) inspired the album, Joanne.
7 She Stands Up For What She Believes In
Since entering the pop scene, Lady Gaga has been an outspoken advocate for the causes she feels passionate about, including LGTBQ+ rights, mental health awareness, and support for survivors of sexual assault.
Lady Gaga brings her passion to her hit songs. "No matter gay, straight or bi, lesbian, transgender life, I'm on the right track baby, I was born to be brave!" Lady Gaga, who is proudly bisexual, sings on Born This Way, a track dedicated to self-liberation and empowerment.
6 She is Kind
For Lady Gaga, kindness is not an afterthought but a guiding principle. Her dedication to remaining kind, considerate, and generous has made her a leader in philanthropy and hugely positive as a role model to her fans.
"We bring people together to have real, honest conversations and to be kind. It is not an afterthought to our work. It is the driving power for everything we do. It is the lens we view every challenge through. It is framing the way we put everything around every possible solution. To me, almost every problem you can think of can be solved with kindness," Gaga said as she received the Children Mending Heart's 10th annual Empathy Rocks awards for her work with the foundation.
5 She Breaks Boundaries
From her unique fashion choices to her genre-bending and blending music, Lady Gaga has never failed to excite her fans and capture the public imagination.
Her impact on the world of pop is profound. In 2015, Time noted that Gaga had "practically invented the current era of pop music as spectacle." Additionally, Lady Gaga's dedication to breaking boundaries and producing innovative music has made her an inspiration for many artists, including Nicki Minaj and Halsey.
4 She Works Hard
"This is hard work," Gaga said as she accepted an Academy Award for Best Original Song. "I've worked hard for a long time, and it's not about winning—but what it's about is not giving up."
"If you have a dream, fight for it," she continued. "There's a discipline for passion. And it's not about how many times you get rejected, or you fall, or you're beaten up. It's about how many times you stand up, and are brave, and you keep on going."
3 She is Persistent
After injuring herself during The Monster Ball tour, Gaga was diagnosed with synovitis, an inflammation of the joints, and a gruesome labral tear. The injury has left her with consistent chronic pain and threatened to take her off the stage entirely.
In Gaga's Netflix documentary, Gaga: Five Foot Two, Gaga gives her fans an intimate look at her struggles mental and physical pain. However, through physical and emotional therapy, Lady Gaga has persevered and continued to succeed in her career.
2 She is Multi-Talented
Lady Gaga's list of talents seems never-ending— she can belt out hit tunes of her own creation, give a powerful acting performances, play the piano, acoustic guitar, drums, and a keytar, and dance in 6" heels.
Most recently, critics and fans lauded Lady Gaga for her acting chops. In 2018, Gaga stared alongside Bradley Cooper, and co-wrote and directed the acclaimed A Star is Born. The film was nominated for eight Oscars—including Best Actress—and its hit Shallow won Best Original Song. Gaga herself went on to win to a Grammy for Best Actress.
1 She is Not Afraid to be Emotional and Vulnerable
"Today, I shared one my deepest secrets w/ the world. Secrets keep you sick w/ shame," Lady Gaga tweeted after she visited Harlem's Ali Forney Center for homeless LGBT youth and revealed she lives with PTSD. During the same visit to the Ali Forney Center, Gaga shared ways that she lives with her mental illness and thanked the LGBT youth for sharing their experiences.
Gaga's Netflix documentary, Gaga: Five Foot Two, gives her fans an unfiltered look at her struggles and triumphs. Lady Gaga's advocacy and passion are made even more potent by her dedication to being real—emotional and vulnerable—in front of her fans.