This 7-Word Career Advice Turned Chelsea Handler's Life From Waitressing To Being A Millionaire Comedian
Little did Chelsea Handler know that doing all those overtime waitressing would eventually lead her to becoming the millionaire that she is now.
Chelsea Handler is one of Hollywood's biggest female stand-up comedians. She is also an actress, writer, television host, producer, and now the head of her own production company, Borderline Amazing Productions. At one point, she has also been regarded by both Time and Forbes magazine as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in the world.
But how did she get from waitressing and being a struggling stand-up comedian to become one of the world's biggest entertainment makers? According to Handler, there is one huge career lesson that she has kept with her in all her years that brought her from waitressing to taking the world.
"When you make a commitment, keep it."
When Handler was 23, she took up a waitressing job that made her tons of friends in Los Angeles. "I was never the best waitress," she said in a #CareerLaunch post she wrote for LinkedIn. "But I was always the person people called when they needed a shift covered...because I would always say yes."
Handler admitted that she never wanted to work the extra shifts. Who would want to spend their time off working even more? But Handler wanted people to feel they could count on her. So despite the fact that she took all those jobs half-heartedly, she still did it.
Eventually, staying true to her word, keeping her commitments, and her habit of wanting to be the reliable person, spilled to her career as stand-up comedian. It didn't matter that at first, the mic intimidated her beyond her wits and she would secretly hope for the set to be cancelled. But she made a pact to herself that she would get up and do her best, no matter what
"I kept showing up. When there were only two people in the audience at the Comedy Store at the 9 p.m. show, I showed up and did 10 minutes of material every time I got the 9 p.m. slot. It turns out that if you can make two people laugh, then you can make two thousand people laugh," Handler wrote.
Showing up then permeated every facet of her life: when making a commitment to working out, to making a public appearance, to visiting a friend or her family. "Whatever it is, when I commmit, I show up."
There are many times when flaking out is the easier route. Staying at home and bingeing on Netflix is a more comfortable use of your time than going out of your way to making it to an event or a party a train-ride away.
Commitment is also seen by many as a daunting word. The idea of investing the time or efffort in a long-term goal might sound like too much work. And there may be moments when you think that things may not work out anyway, so why bother? Only x percent of the population succeeds anyway, so why bother?
But success cannot be measured only by how many millions you do, or how many companies you establish or own. Success is also in the feeling that you've helped a colleague out, or in your self-worth when your boss thinks you're the most reliable person in the group.
There may be times that the burden of being the reliable one becomes too much. Many co-workers and bosses could take advantage of you if you keep doing the work no one does. But in the long run, having this kind of notoriety attached to you name would open you to doors of possibilities. When a new project is on, when a new position opens up, you're the top of everyone's mind because they know you will get things done.
There are tons of career advice from tons of different people. But before you start becoming the best or doing this or doing that, it all starts with being there to actually do it.
"Showing up shows great character...and I want to be remembered if for nothing else than to have had great character. And once you master the art of physically showing up, the art of mentally showing up usually takes care of itself," Handler ended.
And in the end, it all went back to that moment when she decided to commit, when she decided she'll do it. And if you do, too, maybe you'll end us just like her.
Image from Chelsea Handler on Instagram