For what is probably the 100th time, the other night I watched the Wizard of Oz. This time however, I watched it through new lenses. The life lessons and values demonstrated in this show are truly amazing. As I watched, one that jumped out at me, probably because it is so important in my own life was the story of Courage.
First, Dorothy had to demonstrate the Courage to embark on a journey without any real knowledge of where it could lead or the dangers she may encounter. Along the way she takes on new partners, new relationships with the care and trust of an old valued friendship. Then there is the Cowardly lion, who only wanted to have Courage, when all along all he really needed was someone to believe in him.
I read a quote the other day that made me think of that lion. The quote is from Napoleon Hill and states,
“Had I not been confident in my creation, others could have influenced my thought process simply by their inability to dream or their unwillingness to step beyond their comfort zone.”
So what would have happened if the Great and Powerful Oz told the lion his dream was unrealistic, silly and without merit and he should just go back to the forest from which he came from? May seem like a silly point, but put it into context of your own life.
Ever had anyone tell you your dreams, goals or aspirations were silly or unattainable? Ever quit because of it? Think what our world would be like if all the folks with the inability to dream stopped our thought leaders from dreaming! How many ideas have been disbanded because the creator was that cowardly lion and had no one early on to believe in them.
We influence others everyday. A friend of mine once told me that about 85% of all people do what is necessary to get by day-to-day, but really never work up the courage to challenge the status quo, even though they may desire to do so. Maybe no one believed in them.
Then there is the other 15%, who challenge that status quo and try and make their lives and other lives better everyday. Within that 15% are the 5% people. They exhibit Courage, real Courage, to walk the yellow brick road without knowing where it will lead, build trusted relationships along the way and in the end are awarded their hearts desire because they never, ever gave up.
Live your life with Courage. Believe in your own creation. Be willing to dream.
Authored by Employment Resource Group CEO Sharon Hulce