How many times have we uttered the phrase, “That was a waste of time.” As good as our intentions may be, the outcome clearly did not pan out the way we wished it to.
Hours upon hours of time invested into something, and the result goes unnoticed. Perhaps it’s trying to figure out how to use a new piece of seemingly cryptic technology. Maybe it’s an attempt at learning a new language. It could be time spent exercising, consoling others, studying, reading, helping, conversing, or just showing some support, and yet nobody really seems to notice.
We tend to measure our investments based off the worth other people see in them. But any experience you engage in runs deeper than the perception others create.
Walt Disney World is a wonderful example of this. Described as a magical place, Disney has an atmosphere of sheer wonder and awe. How did Disney come to be what it is? Investments. Many of which go unknown, but no doubt play a pivotal roll into creating this living fantasy.
There is an incredulous attention to detail at Disney.
Sign posts are repainted every night after closing so as not to appear worn or chipped.
Pictures and murals contain such detailed ambiguity that each time you look at one you’re bound to find something new.
Carousels are painted with gold paint. No, not gold-colored paint, but 23-karat gold-leafed paint.
But why invest in things that 95% of the guests won’t even notice? I seriously doubt kids can tell the difference between gold-leaf and gold colored paint.
It is Disney’s commitment to their guests, letting them know that they go all out in everything they do. And even if the guests don’t notice the employees certainly do. Passion is contagious and so the commitment to excellence certainly catches on.
And so a good amount of the efforts that contribute to Disney’s greatness go unnoticed. But unnoticed does not mean unworthy. All those hidden details contribute to Disney’s unmatched reputation.
The same idea can be applied to each and every one of us. We may not see direct results and our actions may go unnoticed, but like the freshly painted signs and ambiguous illustrations of Disney World, everything culminates into the essence of the whole.
Every action you take shapes who you are. And so even if you have spent countless hours investing your time without being recognized for it, its okay, it is all part of the fantastical character of you. And that is what get’s noticed.
Some people would view a golden painted carousel as idiotic and a waste of money. But those horses and chariots were painted gold because of the belief of Disney’s passion for excellence and commitment to it’s guests. To Disney, their guest are gold, they are the reason for it’s existence.
If everything you do creates the essence of who you are, then is there really any time wasted? Unmeasurable and unnoticed does not mean misused.
So what are your gold painted carousels? Do you think your actions develop character? What is something you thought to be a waste of time? Was it?