Are You Discontented?

By Alex Araneta

Do you find yourself at times wishing things would be different with you? You hope that you’re in a better job having more money and doing something you really enjoy while sharing it with someone you truly care about. Well, if you see yourself in this situation what you are experiencing is a case of discontentment.

Unfortunately for the majority of us, life will not always deal you a great set of cards. You have however the option on how to respond to this. You can choose to wallow in your discontentment and curse others as well as your creator for your situation or you may choose the better path and opt to use this as a springboard for positive action.

The great thing about history is that if we choose to observe and learn from it, we spare ourselves from trial and error as well as the pain and misery. Many people who have reached the pinnacle of success would attribute their success to a great sense of discontentment that so consumed them that it led them to channel their efforts into doing something great.

There is Walt Disney who at his young age would go with his parents to the carnival and enjoy his favorite ride which was the carousel. One day while they were about to ride, Walt noticed something. The horses made out of wood and which was painted over began to show signs of wear. The paint was fading from white to a dull cream color while the wood exposed itself so you could see portions of just rough brown. It was so unsightly that Walt exclaimed to his parents “Dad, Mom I don’t like what I’m seeing! It looks so terrible and sad. When I grow up I’m going to build a place where there is only joy not sadness.”

Little did the young Walt know that in his matter-of fact statement lay his discontentment which would serve as his motivation to create what we now enjoy as Disneyland. In fact, for those who have had the fortune to visit any of their theme parks, they would bear me out by acknowledging that they would see at the entrance of Disneyland the signboard that states “Welcome to the Happiest Place on Earth.”

Then there is Dewitt and Lila Wallace who during the 1930’s were so disheartened that many of their countrymen could not afford the simple luxury to read the works of such great authors such as F. Scott Fitzgerald or Ernest Hemingway. “What a travesty that only the wealthy can enjoy the opportunity to read a well written book,” was the bone of discontentment for Dewitt and Lila Wallace.

It didn’t take long for them to act upon this as they went to see these great authors and presented their case of creating a compilation of excerpts from the greatest novels and stories so even the lowliest people could have the opportunity of reading a great book. Lila and Dewitt’s discontentment spurred them to create what would be Reader’s Digest which would be one of the most successful publications in history. Not to forget in recent history we all are aware and are so enamored in how Steve Jobs challenged the status quo to create the most innovative products, calling ingenuity as something you create that people will eventually realize that they can’t live without. And he was absolutely right!

I remember when I was young (many, many years ago!) I would enjoy watching my favorite cartoon, which was Popeye. Popeye and his arch nemesis Brutus both shared a common love who was Olive Oil. And so the story goes that they would always get into fights to see who rightly deserves the damsel in distress. Well, with Brutus being the much bigger of the two, the fights would be one-sided until Popeye, after receiving tons of beating would blurt out in his sailor’s English “I can’t stands it no more!”

Because of his disgust over his situation he decides to do something about it and takes the can of spinach wherein soon after he grows in strength and turns the table on Brutus and pummels him into submission and wins back the heart of his lady love Olive Oil.

There may be many things you want changed in yourself or in your circumstances. I too share the same sentiments with you and take it from history and even fiction – we can use these inner longings and turn them into action towards achieving great things!

Alex Araneta will be one of the speakers at The Success Summit on May 10, 2013 at the Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium of the RCBC Plaza. Joining Alex are Raymund Aaron, North America’s No. 1 Success Coach as well as Norman Black, Rose Fausto, Jim Lafferty, Ging Igual and Jayme Pizzarro. For inquiries please email Alex at araneta. catalyst360@gmail.com or call/text him at 0917- 8511115 (Globe) /0999-9982190 (Smart)

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