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From Caesar’s ups came Sid’s lows

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in Leaders & Managers,Workplace Communication

Back in 1952, Sid Caesar was the highest-paid entertainer in America, earning more than $1 million a year for his NBC variety show, “Caesar’s Hour.”

But that show brought incredible pressure. On weeks when programs were aired, Caesar and his team locked themselves behind closed doors for days, perfecting every joke and skit.

To cope with the pressure, Caesar became a substance abuser. By the time NBC canceled his show six years later, Caesar had become addicted to alcohol and barbiturates and was completely burned out. At age 35, he withdrew from public life to recover and reflect on what had gone wrong. After two decades in seclusion, he was finally able to resume his career.

The lesson: Be sure to couple success with special effort to assure that the present remains good.

Or, as Caesar explains it: “If you have a good ‘now,’ you’re going to have a good ‘was.’”

— Adapted from

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