If Brad can do it I can too

This is the time of year when we all set big goals.  And rightfully so.  I encourage you to think big.  But don’t get stuck hoping to be the next Garth Brooks when you’re not willing to play tonight’s gig down at the local pizza shop.  Most famous people started with not-so-famous work experiences.

Check these out:

Donald Trump, now a filthy-rich real estate investor, got his start collecting soda bottles for the deposit money.

Michael Dell, founder of Dell Computers washed dishes at a Chinese restaurant before hitting it big with his computers.

Johnny Depp donned makeup for his gig in a KISS tribute band as a young performer.  Back then he often made about $25 a night – today he makes about $25 million a year.

Chris Rock started his career as a busboy at a Red Lobster in Queens, N.Y.  His first jokes included, “The thing about Red Lobster is that if you work there, you can’t afford to eat there.  You’re making minimum wage.  A shrimp cost minimum wage.”

Lucille Ball was reportedly fired from an ice-cream shop for not remembering to add bananas to banana splits.  Her famous skit wrapping candies from the conveyor belt came out of those early days in food service.

Tom Hanks started out as a popcorn and peanuts vendor at the Oakland Coliseum in California.  Then he worked his way up to a hotel bellhop, carrying bags for the “stars.”

Madonna worked at Dunkin’ Donuts as a teenager.  Today, as the 21st richest celebrity in the world she could buy all the donuts she wants.

Brad Pitt drove limos, moved refrigerators and dressed up as a chicken trying to convince customers to visit a Mexican restaurant.

Mariah Carey was a beauty-school dropout.  Then she was fired from her job as a hat checker.  Today she’s one of the most successful female vocalists of all time.

Embrace the work opportunity you have today.  It may be the stepping stone you need on your way to success.  No one goes from having a dream to fame and fortune overnight. As a 12-yr-old  I sold sweet corn on the side of the road for $.30 a dozen.   In high school I earned extra money cleaning out chicken coops on the weekend.  The chicken waste I was shoveling created an ammonia smell that burned my eyes and nose.  It was nasty, stinky, backbreaking work.  But those jobs taught me the value of hard work and provided the incentive to look for better options.

What’s the one job that sticks out in your journey of getting to where you are today?  And what was the lesson learned?

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