In 1927, Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks created their first animated cartoon character, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. Audiences were enamoured by Oswald and numerous cartoons were released and distributed by Universal Studios.
In 1928, Disney took a train to New York to renew the contract with distributor, Charles Mintz, and seek a slight increase in pay. On arrival, he found that not only would he not receive any increase, but he did not own the rights to Oswald and Universal had encouraged most of Disney's staff to move across.
Faced with ruin, Walt returned to Hollywood and with his brother, Roy, and Iwerks, set about rebuilding the studio. With the belief they could start again, but not knowing how, they set about creating a new character. That character would come to be synonymous with the global giant, The Walt Disney Company, as we know it today. That character was Mickey Mouse.
"I only hope that we don't lose sight of one thing - that it was all started by a mouse."
Like Disney, many successful entrepreneurs are dreamers, daring to allow their imaginations to take flight. Consider Elon Musk who dreams of reducing global warming and colonising Mars to minimise the likelihood of human extinction. Whilst many of us dream, Musk, like Disney before him, has an unwavering belief that his dreams will become reality. Not only do we have Tesla electric vehicles, but similar innovative battery technology is used in Tesla Powerwalls, and these could potentially be utilised in commercial scale installations to reduce power reliability problems, such as those documented in South Australia. And just recently, Musk's company, SpaceX announced deep space tourism would commence in 2018 with trips around the moon.
It would seem to me, therefore, that the secret ingredient to any success is belief. And often strong self belief, as this is the bridge that takes dreams and turns them into the plans that make them reality. Now we're not all going to be a Walt Disney, a Steve Jobs or an EIon Musk. But with a strong set of beliefs, we can achieve our own goals and dreams.
You see, beliefs are simply assumed truths. We build them up over time through parents, our environment, media, friends and colleagues, what we read or watch, amongst other things. And because they are assumed tuths, our mind goes in search of evidence to support our beliefs, to strengthen our beliefs, whether they help us or hinder us.
What's far more important then, is not so much what we believe, but whether those beliefs empower us, or limit us in achieving our goals and dreams.
So take a moment to write down all of the things you believe about yourself and your aspirations. Then ask yourself, which of the beliefs are supporting me to get to where I want to go, and which ones are actually preventing my success. As Henry Ford famously said:
"Whether you believe you can, or you can't, you're probably right." - Henry Ford
The good news is, because beliefs are assumed truths, you are free to change them, and allow your mind to find evidence of your empowering beliefs.
Of course it's not always easy and it does take discipline. I have been guilty of believing I'm not good enough and that I'll always have the stigma of depression. Instead, I choose to believe I'm exactly where I need to be and can play my part in helping others.
So why the picture of noodles? Those familiar with Kung Fu Panda will know that the mighty Dragon Warrior, Master Po Ping once said:
"There is no secret ingredient. To make something special, you just have to believe it is special." - Master Po Ping, Kung Fu Panda
Now it's over to you...
What limiting beliefs will you let go of, or change, in order to achieve your goals, fulfil your potential, or live your dreams?