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Three (Shockingly Good) Lessons from Ashton Kutcher

by J. Money on Tuesday, October 1, 2013

If any of you saw the Teen Choice Awards a couple of months back, you’ll know exactly what this is about. And you’ll also know it’s all stuff worth repeating too as Mr. “Chris” Ashton Kutcher drops some incredibly wise words on making it far in life.

I know you don’t believe me, but it’s true:


(If you’re reading this in RSS or email, click here to watch the video – at 1:15)

I honestly got goose bumps watching it the first time around :) And it ain’t so bad the other 5 times either when needing to pause and jot down notes for y’all, haha…

Here are Ashton’s three major tips:

1. Find your opportunities

He had his 1st job at 13 carrying shingles up the roof for his dad, and then later washing dishes at a restaurant, working at a grocery store deli, and even sweeping dust off the warehouse floor of what sounded like a Cheerios maker? Haha… All stuff which would completely fit in with my own list of random jobs throughout my lifetimes so far ;)

But the point is, he worked his ass off no matter what position he had, and states he “never had a job that he was better than.” A damn important thing for a teeny bopper to hear in the audience, and even a finance blogger like yours truly. And believe me, I’m not the only one who’s passing this around in our little PF world here. I first saw it in a tweet by Brave New Life, and then again over the weekend while reading an article by The Art of Being Cheap. I just happen to be SUPER late to the Ashton-loving party, haha…

He also points out that he’s never quit a job unless a new one was already lined up. Something we all know about in theory, but which we fail to act on at times. So for sharing that, I give him mad respect.

2. Always be sexy

But not in the way you think ;) His delivery of this is pretty bad ass:

“The sexiest thing in the entire world (pause, pause, crowd goes wild, pause, pause) is being REALLY smart. And being thoughtful, and being generous. Everything else is CRAP – I promise you.”

Now of course being sexy on TOP of being smart is just extra money in the bank, but you get the point. Brains is were it really counts, and it helps hearing it from someone, again, that many many people look up to. Or even down to, like I may or may not have done when wrongly assuming he was just another pretty face in show biz ;)

3. Build your life, don’t live one

This last piece of advice comes from some words he learned while playing the late Steve Jobs for that new movie of his that recently came out. Which he summarizes as:

“Everything around us – that we call life – was made up by people that were no smarter than you.”

Meaning to go out there and do your *OWN* thing and build your own life for other people to live in  – you don’t have to stick with the status quo and do whatever you believe you *have* to do because everyone else is doing it too.

That was my favorite part of the whole speech :) And a great place to drop the mic and leave everyone incredibly motivated… I now know why he gets so many great acting gigs! Haha…

So there you have it. Work hard and get “lucky” with your opportunities, continue to learn and become smarter, and build your own life regardless of what everyone else is doing.

Great, great stuff… I am officially a Chris Kutcher fan ;)


{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Brian October 1, 2013 at 9:02 am

Pretty good words of wisdom from the guy who brought you “Punk’d” I have 3 children and my wife and I are so glad we are introducing them to things like budgeting, savings etc now at a young age. We hope it makes for better choices for them in their future.

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2 J. Money October 1, 2013 at 2:50 pm

Indeed! And Punk’d was a pretty good show, I’m not gonna lie.

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3 Mr. 1500 October 1, 2013 at 9:20 am

I’m a computer guy, so I have followed Mr, Kutcher for a while from a completely different perspective that most. He’s a huge tech investor and has even started his own venture capital fund. However it goes beyond that.

There are lots of hollywood types who invest in technology, but Kutcher actually understands it. He is a frequent speaker at technology conferences. This guy knows his stuff!

Kutcher is going to be a billionaire some day. He’s off to a good start.

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4 Mr. 1500 October 1, 2013 at 11:04 am

Oh, one other thing about Kutcher is that he was a biomedical engineering major at University of Iowa. Despite the goofballs he plays on TV, this guy is a smart cookie.

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5 J. Money October 1, 2013 at 2:53 pm

Yeah! That’s what I’ve heard too. One of my friends actually participated in Paul Graham’s Y Combinator startup program, and at the end when they were pitching their companies to investors he saw Ashton in the audience! Haha… pretty wild stuff. (And remember how involved he was with Twitter way back when? When he made that spectacle out of reaching the first 1 million users? He most def. knows his stuff)

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6 Wunderwriter October 1, 2013 at 9:31 am

Wow! Color me shocked…I thought this guy was your typical Hollywood luckier than smart pretty boy. Sage words of wisdom in a smooth, easy delivery that probably actually got through to the audience (they got through to me). I love it when I hear something that causes me to pause and reevaluate; it happens so rarely these days. I may not get off the treadmill, but at least I’ll take a moment to consider the possibilities.

Excellent observations, Chris! I’ll pay more attention to you from here on out; sorry for selling you short, there’s a lot more to you than I ever imagined.

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7 J. Money October 1, 2013 at 2:54 pm

You put it perfectly – it causes you to pause and think for a bit. We’re always so go-go-go in this society, that it’s awesome when something stops us for a hot second and holds our complete attention. Mr. Kutcher does it damn well with this one.

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8 Holly@ClubThrifty October 1, 2013 at 9:53 am

Who knew that Ashton Kutcher could be so inspirational?
=)

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9 Mark Ross October 1, 2013 at 10:19 am

Great quotes from a very bright young man! :)

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10 Martin October 1, 2013 at 11:57 am

It was a great speech. Sadly no tips on milf hunting.

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11 J. Money October 1, 2013 at 2:55 pm

OMG haha… you’re too much, brotha.

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12 Jake @ Ca$h Funny October 1, 2013 at 12:26 pm

These are some great life tips. I think the building a life vs. living one is hard for a lot of people to understand. Anyone can do anything if they just build towards it. It’s funny how we can learn life lessons in the most random places sometimes.

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13 a terrible husband... October 1, 2013 at 2:47 pm

You lost me at “If any of you saw the Teen Choice Awards a couple of months back….”

But I trust you, so you got me back quick. Pretty great speech after all. Go Kutch!

(Does anyone call him Kutch?)

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14 J. Money October 1, 2013 at 2:55 pm

(they do now!)

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15 Kyle | Rather-Be-Shopping.com October 1, 2013 at 6:47 pm

Great speech – I loved the fact he said it at the Teen Choice Awards. The crowd seemed stunned which was equally awesome.

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16 Micro October 1, 2013 at 7:57 pm

I remember seeing that video a couple months back and was amazed. Given it was the teen choice awards, I wasn’t exactly expecting that good of information to come from one of the speeches.

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17 Aimee October 1, 2013 at 8:06 pm

It is awesome to see a celebrity that connects with teens to actually use their connection to sell something more profound than sex and fashion. I wish more people of influence took it more seriously.

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18 J. Money October 2, 2013 at 10:33 am

YES. AGREED!

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19 Christine @ ThePursuitofGreen October 2, 2013 at 2:02 am

Ashton Kutcher more than just a pretty face! I never knew all this stuff about him and it’s good to find out.

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20 EL @ MoneyWatch101 October 2, 2013 at 12:22 pm

I saw that clip and I was shocked to hear this type of advice at a teen choice award. Because it can hurt popularity if stars make the fans bored. But I think it worked well for him in this instance. I liked the advice for the kids.

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21 J. Money October 3, 2013 at 9:27 pm

Yeah – it was PERFECT for this audience for sure, which of course he knew and I love him more for it :)

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