While emceeing the Chrysalis Butterfly Ball in Los Angeles on Saturday night (September 30th), Terry Crews opened up about the financial hurdles he faced when he left the NFL and started working in the entertainment industry.

“After retiring from the NFL, I struggled to get to the next level where I wanted to be. I tried and failed many times to secure a job in entertainment, but there was no luck,” the Brooklyn Nine-Nine actor said. “And then my wife’s wedding ring took its fourth trip to the pawn shop. When that happened, she told me maybe it’s time you widen the search and do anything that could genuinely put food on the table.”

The America’s Got Talent host revealed that he took a job at a factory, where he was “unceremoniously handed a broom and told to sweep the entire factory.” Crews said this job paid $8 an hour.

While this left him “devastated,” the Expendables actor said that he began to see the benefits. “Something else happened that allowed me to reshape my mindset bit by bit,” he added. “At the end of the day, I was able to put gas in the car and food on our table. I went to sleep exhausted, but I would wake up ready to take charge of my life.”