Dyslexic and partially deaf due to a childhood ear infection, McQueen was also plagued by a stepfather who beat him so harshly that at age nine he left home to run with a street gang. He worked as a roughneck, a carnival barker, and a lumberjack but joined the Marines where he embraced the discipline. Continue reading Steve McQueen’s road to “King of Cool” is the reinvention ride of a lifetime
Alonzo Bodden went to Aviation High School to learn how to be an airplane mechanic and worked for Lockheed Martin and McDonnell Douglas before taking his passion for comedy airborne.
“I was teaching airplane mechanics when I realized it was more fun to make them laugh. I was laid off one more time and I never looked back.” Continue reading From airplane mechanic to world-renowned comedian: a lesson in reinvention
Gladys “Gladyator” Burrill was an aircraft pilot, a mountain climber, a hiker and a horseback rider but is most well-known for marathon running — at the spry age of 92!
She began to run marathons at 86 when her peers were retiring to Florida to sit on the beach and read. She relentlessly pushed her pace enabling her to run the full Honolulu Marathon at 92 in nine hours and 53 minutes proving that age really is just a number. Burrill was recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records for her achievement.
It IS possible to find meaningful work, even later in life. It’s just a matter of how bad you want it, how much work you’re willing to put in, and how persistent you’re going to be to reach your goal. What’s keeping you stuck in place?
“Age is only a number. People can be old at 40. It’s important to think positive and to dream.” Gladys Burrill
“First, you have to want to then you have to pursue it. The only question was whether I was going to just do it for myself in my head or whether I was going to do it and share it with somebody else.” – Bill Withers Continue reading What does the music of meaningful work sound like?
“To be a comedian, you have to get onstage and find out if you’re funny” – Rodney Dangerfield.
Rodney Dangerfield is the patron saint of comedians wondering when their ship will come in. Imagine having no success and after nine years of failure, giving it up in disgust, moving to New Jersey, and selling aluminum siding. “At the time I quit, I was the only one who knew I quit.” Years later he tried again, this time wrecking his marriage, and failing once more. “It was like a need. I had to work. I had to tell jokes. I had to write them and tell them.” Epiphany: Continue reading Respect you and your goal to find meaningful work
Katharine Hepburn was an unlikely Hollywood star. Possessing a distinctive speech pattern and an abundance of quirky mannerisms, she earned unqualified praise from her admirers and unmerciful criticism from her detractors. Unabashedly outspoken and iconoclastic, she did as she pleased, refusing to grant interviews and wearing casual clothes at a time when actresses were expected to exude glamour 24 hours a day. Continue reading “As for me, prizes are nothing. My prize is my work.” Katharine Hepburn
“I’d rather be a failure at something I love than a success at something I hate.” – George Burns
At the time of his Oscar win for Best Supporting Actor in The Sunshine Boys at 80 years old, Burns was the oldest recipient of an Academy Award. Continue reading George Burns’ best one-liner about meaningful work