Case Study: How Ben quit the circus and proved he could get a “real” job

Ramit Sethi

Meet Ben, a circus performer who used my Earn1K course to go from $0 to $60/hour in side income.

I want to show you how he found his Dream Job — a job that offered “more money than I’d ever received” — in 3 weeks.

Starving Artist Syndrome

In college, Ben had an interesting experience. “A bunch of cute girls asked me if I wanted to lift them up in a circus show, a partners acrobatics act, and I said ‘sure, sounds like fun!’”

After he graduated with a degree in philosophy but no job prospects, Ben moved to Seattle and started working part time with the circus as a coach and performer. This opened him up to other opportunities, “like getting involved in the Seattle burlesque scene and modelling for art classes. At one point I was a professional ninja for a cosmetics company.”

But there was one problem. Ben wasn’t making much money. He wanted more, but the classic invisible script for artists — Starving Artist Syndrome — was holding him back: “There was a ceiling on how high you could go financially. And with performers there is a belief that we are always going to be poor, and that is the trade off.”

Then he got my email about Dream Job.

Not “qualified” for your Dream Job? Try this.

After succeeding with Earn1K, Ben trusted my courses, but he wasn’t sure Dream Job was the right fit. “The first time I saw it, I thought it didn’t apply to me. I was a circus performer. What does Ramit know about that? But this time around I wanted to break the mentality of ‘I’m a circus artist and I can’t do any other work.’”

He signed up for the program and within two days was on a car ride to NYC. “Literally because of Dream Job. I knew if I could work through this program, I could get some work in New York.”

Ben dug into the material. “It was enlightening to say the least. I’ve never had a real job in my entire life. Ramit’s material started addressing that directly. Even if you don’t feel like you have experience in the field you want to get into, you can at least window shop.”

Ben followed my step-by-step LinkedIn tutorial to start the process. “I saw things that could potentially interest me. I realized I could actually move forward despite my lack of formal credentials. It was like a slow hacking away of these limiting beliefs I had. And I wasn’t allowed to jump ahead. I started feeling pretty confident and I liked the progression of it all.”

In NYC, Ben started natural networking with the techniques he learned in Dream Job. “I completely botched and burned on a few talks, but I ended up having no interest in certain areas after hearing direct accounts of what it was like.” He kept practicing and soon made a connection. “She seemed to like where my head was at and who I was. I used the Briefcase Technique, and I’m pretty sure she started drooling just a little bit.”

Ben landed a job doing operations and marketing for a private school within three weeks of starting Dream Job. “I got a position that I’m pretty sure on paper I have no right to be doing. I’m capable, but in no way technically qualified. It reinforced Ramit’s tenet that if you understand a person’s problems and offer up solutions you can do a lot.”

I thought there was no way anyone was going to hire me

“It was this feeling of elation. I have a real job, and I’m being offered more money than I’ve ever received.”

“Just knowing I can get a job whenever I want, even without qualifications, that was the main thing. My resume is littered with circus this, circus that, model, personal trainer, ninja. I thought there was no way anyone was going to hire me based on that, and here I am. Job. Salary.”

How does Ben sum up Find Your Dream Job?

“It’s fundamentally what the real process is for finding a job. It wasn’t something like you tweak your resume, shotgun it out to everyone, and hope that the job gods look down upon you favorably. It was about the real process of finding a job, how to turn the odds in your favor, and how to get more control than you previously thought. You do have options. You aren’t limited to what your current situation is.”

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  1. Anubhav

    wonderful ideas!! complete entertainment!! I love this blog and enjoyed with reading…Nice Job!! haha!!

  2. Ted - Hi John the Conquerer

    I’m happy for him. If you’re going to be successful in this life, you have to prove to yourself that you’re just as good as all the people around you. And, I think that’s what been did.