Self-made millionaire: What I learned from going broke in my 20s

Millionaire's comeback: The lowest point was being turned down for a phone

When he was in his 20s, Michael "Rooster" McConaughey nearly destroyed the business empire he built.

"The biggest failure I had — monetarily wise, business wise — was I went bankrupt," said McConaughey, a self-made millionaire who co-stars on CNBC's reality pitch show "West Texas Investors Club."

After striking success in the oil and lead pipe business, McConaughey had nearly spent his whole bundle.

"My biggest problem was I could make money, but I couldn't hold on to it," he said. "I was going around with all the big shots. I thought, hell, I'll never see a poor day."

At his lowest point, he couldn't purchase a phone for his son at Radio Shack.

"Rooster" McConaughey of West Texas Investors Club

So he decided to go back to the basics.

"I went broke and started all over. I said, 'I'm going to go back to just the way that I was,'" McConaughey said.

I knew that I needed to stay at it.
Michael "Rooster" McConaughey
co-chairman of West Texas Ltd.

"I knew I needed to build a foundation," he added. "I knew that I needed to stay at it. I knew I needed to do it the slow way."

Along the way, the entrepreneur learned the value of business partnerships and having good mentors.

"It's amazing how that helps, just knowing someone has confidence and faith in you," he said. "That's a hell of a motivator."

CNBC's "West Texas Investors Club" airs Tuesday at 10 p.m. EDT.