An adventurous 21 year old stepped on the train in Kansas City, Missouri. They year is 1923 and the young man is Walt Disney. He had $40 in his pocket, his cardboard suitcase, some drawing materials, and his most recently completed animation/live action film. This is the part of the story that officially people have heard for years.
The part of the story that some people forget or ignore is that Walt also carried with him to California on that train, his first official bankruptcy, a failed animation company, and a very empty belly because he had not been eating very well in the weeks before he boarded this train. He did however have a new pair of shoes and a heart and head full of optimism.
These are the things that Walt carried with him when he stepped on the train in 1923 and headed to California. In many ways, although he never may have realized it, this was a magical train ride.
The California he was heading toward was a place that was just in the process of “becoming.” It was a place where almost anything that could be imagined was becoming possible. The optimism that drove Walt to get on the train helped him when he stepped off the train to accomplish things that no one else on the planet had ever done before.
He would become the man that would be a “dreamer and a doer” He didn’t know it at the time, but when he stepped off the train…his journey, his imagination, his desire, his work ethic, his creativity…allowed him to be in right where he needed to be to move from being a man with a dream and great potential to a man who could make dreams come true. Possibilities became realities.
All because he was willing to get on the train.
Now that may sound oversimplified or overdramatic…but don’t shrug it off too quickly!
How many of us may have missed the opportunity because we waited, we were fearful, we let a setback get us down, or let a failure make us quit?
The young Walt Disney that decided to get on that train was not quitting, he was moving forward and chugging into the next chapter of his life…unafraid, willing to try, and willing to risk it all to make it happen.
The results are the stuff of history.
Never underestimate the power of the next step you are about to take. It may the very step that will open up the world of possibility that seemed impossible when you were stuck and standing in the train station.