Have you ever heard Jim Carrey’s ten million dollar story? I recently did after tuning into an annotated version of his recent talk at the New Yorker festival in October this year.
The year was 1991 and a 29 year old Carrey was living in Los Angeles and facing financial ruin. He’d moved from Toronto a few years back after being scouted and hired onto a network television series that failed to grow legs. Responsible for his parents and an infant child, Carrey faced a dark night of the soul.
“I used to go up after doing three comedy clubs a night, I’d go up to the top of Mulholland Drive and sit on the side of the road and look out at all the lights and dream up my life."
One night after work Carrey decided to up the ante and wrote himself a cheque for ten million dollars for ‘acting services rendered' post-dating it for Thanksgiving 1995. In the ensuing years, Carrey worked his tush off, scoring a spot on the hit new comedy series In Living Color and fought for a shot at the big screen.
In 1994 he got his chance starring in three films that would break the back of the international box office. Dumb & Dumber, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective and The Mask. In one year the Canadian prankster became a global superstar and a few months before Thanksgiving the following year, Carrey’s ten million dollar dream was realized.
While we can’t all live to tell our grand-kids such whoppers, shifting our perspective goes a hell of a long way to achieving the things we want most. It helps to lie in bed before the sandman comes to town, to lock onto the things you most desire. You need to be willing to push the limits of possibility, to go where others deem off limits.
If you believe your dreams are worth fighting for it’s time to write them down and stash them away in your favourite hiding place. And then it’s time to get to work.