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‘Aim Small, Miss Small’: Archery Philosophy Leads to a Better Day

bullseye center illustration round

In archery and other shooting practices, there is the concept of “Aim small, miss small.” The idea is that focusing on the smallest spot you can see within the area you want to hit will get you closer to hitting that area. For example, if you look at a 22-inch square target, and you miss just to the outside, you’ll be 11 inches or more from the center of that target. Look at a three-inch bull’s eye, and you’re likely to end up within the 22-inch square target. Look at the nail holding the bull’s eye in place, and you’ll come close to hitting the bull’s eye if not dead on.

Focusing on the small spot allows you to shoot better.

Recently, I’ve had a string of bad days. Even days that should’ve been good end up being bad. Part of the problem is that I am aware of everything else beyond the day. I know how much money we owe and have to pay back. I know what our monthly income needs to be (and we haven’t been close). I lost someone close to me. I am under so much financial pressure and am working so many hours a day that I have no time to deal with the stress or to decompress. I have to hold in emotions that would be better expressed. I have to deal with worries of another day because I know that another day will arrive before I am prepared. Unfortunately, I am not the type of person to let it go.

When no day is a good day, you need to find those moments within that are good. You need to focus on the moments in the day that are good.

In the service industry, you meet a lot of people, and a small percentage of those people are a-holes. Most people are neutral; some are great. As a society, we tend to focus on the problem people. Karens and Kens take up a majority of our energy and our time. They’ve become particularly unpleasant cultural phenomena. It’s hard to remember the good people you’ve dealt with throughout the day when a rude, obnoxious, entitled, adult brat decides they are due something they have no right to. As the employee or owner of a business, you have to figure out how to be civil and placate the person while protecting your business and staff.

However, what you really need to do is remember that these people are not your focus. You are here to serve your other guests. Focus on the good interactions that you have every day. The people that enjoy your shop, have fun coming, and want you to succeed are your focus. Cultivate them and make a point to remember the enjoyment you got from interacting with them.

Remember three good things that happened during the day.

At the end of the day, Jenya and I have gotten into the habit of telling each other three good things about the day. Sometimes, it’s been the corn on the cob that we got from the Salvation Army (It was so sweet). These three good things don’t have to be earth-shattering. They can be the normal things you see every day; you just have to notice them. A bee going from flower to flower, the smell of the ocean air, the feel of the sun on the walk home from work, an achievement in a favorite video game… There are millions of good things out there, you have several good moments in the day. Aim small for the good things, and you likely miss small, making the bad days seem a little better.

My friend Darren Lamb is working on something called “The Happiness Program.” Check out his website or get his book from Amazon (affiliate link).

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Getting the Most out of Motivational Speakers

photo of assorted letter board quote hanged on wall; real motivation comes from within

Every motivational speaker has the same story, or at least, they all have a variation on a theme. Usually, it starts with a hardship – My dad and I lived in a bathroom, I lost my eyesight, I was poor. It doesn’t matter what the hardship is – We had to drink tap water, My dog ate my stuffed animal, My grandma got me a bunny suit for Christmas. What does matter is that it caused the motivational speaker to take action. He or she has overcome whatever issue it was, or maybe continues to face the horrors of the issue that comes with the emotions associated with it, but life is much better than it was before.

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Where Does Real Motivation Come from?

photo of assorted letter board quote hanged on wall; real motivation comes from within

(This article contains affiliate links. Making a purchase from one of these links won’t cost you any more than normal, and it helps fund our blog. Thank you.) I was trying to come up with a post for Monday Motivation, and everything I thought of fell flat. I could write about a motivational song like, Smash Mouth’s “All Star” or Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down,” or I could choose a quote attributed to some famous person, like “if you can dream it, you can do it” – not said by Walt Disney. I could tell the story of a famous person who started of bankrupt and found his or her way to fortune – Walt Disney, again. None of those feel right.

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Knocked Down? Three Sayings to Help You Get Back Up

man hit by boxing glove getting knocked down

(This article uses affiliate links. If you order from the affiliate link, you pay the same amount, and our blog get s a little support. Thank you.) If you want to live a creative life, you’re going to have to face failure, rejection and hard times. With the Internet, you can have complete strangers review your work and describe it as terrible in the most graphic and demeaning ways known to man. The trolls are going to look to knock you down, especially as you become more successful. Don’t let them.

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Heroes of the Haunted Mansion: X. Atencio

Perhaps the most famous story involving X. Atencio and his creativity comes from his work on the Pirates of the Caribbean. In an interview with ParkHoppinPartyGuys, Atencio said that he was brought in by Walt Disney to write the script for the attraction. Atencio had no experience writing scripts, but he said “All right, Walt, whatever you say.” He wrote the auction scene first and showed it to Walt, who told him to continue. However, this wasn’t Atencio’s last or most well-known first.

At the last script meeting, Atencio said he thought that the pirate attraction needed a song. He told Walt his idea, and Walt thought it was great. He said do the music with George Bruns. Atencio had never written a song before, but he came up with “Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me).”

His next Disneyland project was the Haunted Mansion. He worked with Marc Davis and Claude Coats to come up with a script. He also wrote “Grim Grinning Ghosts.”

When someone asks you to do something outside of your comfort zone, especially if it’s creative, do what X. did, say “yes” and get to work.

Sources: “The Haunted Mansion: Imagineering a Disney Classic” by Jason Surrell.

“Disney Legend Interview: X. Atencio” by ParkHoppinPartyGuys at https://youtu.be/QeDH9S17WzU

For more on creativity and the Haunted Mansion, get “The Haunted Mansion Is Creativity” online or at the Candy Cane Inn in Anaheim.

For more on Disneyland and Creativity, order “Disneyland Is Creativity.” For deep thinking about the Disney Company, check out “Penguinate! The Disney Company.”

You can also find more articles about Disney, Disneyland and creativity at our archive website, www.penguinate.weebly.com, and on our blog. If you would like to get even more articles about creativity, join our Patreon and become a Penguinator.