We are in an age of entrepreneurship and are flooded with idiots like me who are trying to make it big in a creative field. There are many greats who have came before and who are making it now. People who are fairly green often look at their stories and take the wrong thing away. As someone who grew up with hopes of being the next great actor I would look at the success of others and say things like, “Well Jon Hamm didn’t make it until he was close to 40 years old. It is fine that I am in my mid-20’s and not out in LA auditioning everyday.” Truth is I was actually hurting my chances of success by taking comfort in only focusing on the breakout moment for Hamm and not the many years struggling through small roles on TV and in film.
I had a very, “There’s always tomorrow,” attitude and that made me a super huge idiot. Jon Hamm wasn’t just sitting around his house one day surfing Facebook and making what were actually not very funny comments on his friend’s status when he just happened to get a call from the show runners at Mad Men saying, “We want you!” He worked tirelessly since the mid-90’s and had to beat out 79 other people to get the role. The work didn’t stop there. He then had to continue to work hard as the lead of the show or else all those years of busting his ass to get there would have been for nothing. He isn’t an overnight success. None of the great entrepreneurs, actors, or other creators of things are. The only overnight success is that time you picked up a hottie at the bar and ended up spending that night together. Even that success was short lived because you didn’t follow up with breakfast and mimosas.
Hamm followed up his “overnight success” with proving he was the right man for the job season after season, Emmy nomination after nomination, and finally winning. He breakfasted the shit out of his date with Mad Men again and again and again. Stop waiting for your Jon Hamm moment and work hard every day to make yours happen as early in life as possible. I’m sure Hamm would have loved to not have taken till 37 to break big.
You never know when it will happen, but if you are always working toward a goal of big success, when that day comes you’ll be ready and know how to keep it going. You could be in your dorm making a silly rate the hotness of your fellow students site or trying to get a small newspaper to catch on, but it’s important to not get caught up with thinking that since Jon Hamm made it at 37 that you can relax at 25. This is only my second blog and my reader base is tiny. Most likely not even 20 people will read this, but if I don’t keep writing I won’t keep getting better and my readership won’t continue to grow and I won’t find the success I’m looking for.