Walt Disney’s Secrets to Success
Whether you love or hate Walt Disney you can learn from him
When people think of Walt Disney they think of cartoons, movies and theme parks. When I think of Walt Disney I climb inside the head of a man who looked at the world in a very unique way. Walt Disney completely changed this world for you and me, yet the formula to his innovation and success was so simple. Before we get into that I want to share with you a few things you may not know about Walt Disney.
At the age of 16 Walt Disney dropped out of high school. He loved to draw and wanted to do political cartoons in newspapers but NOBODY would hire him. Aren’t we lucky he never got comfortable behind a desk job like that? He also spent his early adult life completely broke and didn’t know how he was going to make ends meet. How does one go from nothing to touching the lives of billions in a very short time?
Today Walt Disney is known for being a film producer, screenwriter, director, voice actor, entrepreneur, animator, entertainer, international icon and philanthropist. He co-founded the Walt Disney Company which today reaches revenues of $35 Billion USD annually. Quite an impressive resume Mr. Disney.
According to Walt Disney the secret to his success was his 4 C’s and I believe they are an inner blueprint for making dreams come true. The cool thing is that both you and I can begin implementing the 4 C’s… Today! So let’s start growing more than we’re dying by becoming innovators of our own destiny.
1. Walt Disney was Curious
When Walt Disney was completely broke he was sitting at home in his run down apartment wondering what to do and how he was going to make his next dollar. Then, according to Walt, a mouse ran across his apartment floor. Any ideas who that mouse became? This completely floors me because the universe is always guiding us and sending us messages. It is our inability to attune into the messages and trail its leaving for us that lead to stress and despair. Especially when the chips are down and we feel we’re backed up against the ropes and things couldn’t possibly get any worse. This is when we so desperately need to cultivate curiosity.
The polarity to curiosity is judgement. Now Walt Disney could have looked at that mouse and said, “wow, things have gotten this bad and I now live in an infested apartment with rodents”. Yet, his heart lit up with curiosity and our friend Mickey Mouse was created.
Curiosity keeps us moving forward in life. It transforms your perceptions of the world from negativity to positivity and possibility. Curiosity kills procrastination (judgement breeds it). It is the engine behind drive and stamina. Time to start looking at the people, places and things in your life with more wonder and curiosity.
2. Walt Disney was Confident
Okay this one sounds simple enough and when life’s grooving along it is. Yet when we’re faced with an obstacle or challenge it may be a little more tough. It’s so important to build up our confidence reserves so that we can tap into them when the chips are down and life’s trying to kick our ass with some grand lesson.
Now please don’t get confidence confused with an inflated ego. They are completely different things. In fact an inflated ego is the effect of a deflated and disempowered person. A poised, purposeful and powerful person is the effect of somebody who is connected to their internal compass and emanates confidence.
Confidence does not come from what you say or do. It’s who you are being while living your life. You can do the same task with the utmost confidence and certainty and you will be in a certain state. You can also perform the same task from a place of confusion and no confidence. The end result will be completely different.
Building confidence is a process so go easy on yourself. Try something each week that scares you. When you repeat it week after week you’ll gain momentum and your confidence and certainty will build, I promise.
3. Walt Disney was Courageous
Walt Disney’s 4 C’s secrets to success are all intrinsically connected. Having courage is very similar to being confident. While being confident is having assurance and being sure of oneself, being courageous is having the quality of mind and spirit that will enable you to face difficulty, challenges and pain without fear. It’s about being bold and brave.
So how does one cultivate fearlessness in the face of fear? For me personally, when I feel like I’m going to crap my pants I tap into something that is greater than myself. I’m just this little dude with 2 arms and legs, ofcourse I’m going to get freaked out every now and again. Yet the power that created my body and mind from 2 tiny little cells never abandoned me when I was born. And it never abandoned you either. That power is omnipotent and can overcome any obstacle and challenge. We just need to tune into the right radio station in our minds so we can hear its messages.
This works well for me. When I “tune in” well, I become fearless. Yet sometimes I can’t get the dial in my head perfect so the messages have a bit of static. Even in these states where i’m not in my greatest state of courage, it still allows me to boldly move forward.
So look at what you really want in your life, get out of the safehouse, know that you’ll screwup, yet be courageous and get back up every time life knocks you down.
4. Walt Disney was Constant
Your life may show up exactly as you’ve designed it very quickly. If it does, drop me a line and let me know how you did it. If on the other hand your like me or Walt Disney, your going to have to be persistent and constant while in the pursuit of your dreams. And patience makes it all so much more manageable.
It’s all about taking baby steps everyday. Right now I’m ramping up my training for my first half Ironman race of this season. It would be easy to look at my entire schedule of life and training and get overwhelmed. Instead I look at the tasks at hand and break them down into chunks and manageable steps.
When I’m swimming it’s one arm stroke at a time. If its a 3 hour run, its one foot in front of the other. If its a 5 hour ride, its one pedal stroke at a time. If its a blog post, its one key, word and sentence at a time. If I don’t know what to write about I meditate and connect within and ask, “what do my online peeps need to hear this week to help them stay on purpose?”. Sometimes I get a burst of inspiration, other times I pace around my house looking for clues from the universe. This makes it so much easier and is truly the art of Constance.
Walt Disney never gave up. Walt Disney never took “no” as an answer. Being constant has been one of my gems. My wife, Kate, is the only person who can see how dedicated I am to this. Because I’ll tell you right now that I’m a pretty slow learner, I screw up often and I almost never get it right the first time. What may make me unique is that I “NEVER” give up. And that is simply a choice.
If I can’t get in through the front door I go to the back. If that’s closed I look for a side door. If there’s no doors I change my strategy and look for an open window. Being constant is being persistent and patient while in the pursuit of your life. This might be a relationship, your dream job, dream house or even a bucket list dream.
When you keep doing what feels right in the right ways you will reap a harvest at the appropriate time because you have never given up.
What’s good enough for Walt Disney is good enough for you and me. So let me know what you think about the 4 C’s and if you love’m or hate’m. Either way, take a stance and have an opinion. Your life will thank you for it.
To Your Mastery,