Secrets of Success from a Carousel

Isn’t it funny how some memories are so well etched in our minds that we can be transported to another place and time in an instant? Recently a conversation did just that. Suddenly my mind envisioned an amusement park not too far from where I grew up, right at the spot of an old fashioned carousel. Growing up it was one of my favorite rides. When I was young, I loved picking one of the horses on the inside – the ones that moved up and down as the carousel turned. But, as I got older, I realized it was far more fun to pick a spot near the edge of the ride in hopes of grabbing a brass ring as you rode by.

As I soaked in the memory, the ride from my youth provided powerful imagery for successful personal growth.

1. Be willing to wait for your turn.

To ride the carousel at my childhood amusement park, you need to be willing to wait your turn. Often when you reached the front of the line, all of the horses on the outermost row were taken. If you wanted one of those horses, you needed to wait longer. So it is in life. Opportunities typically come only after a period of waiting. It’s easy to become frustrated wishing for our next chapter to unfold sooner. Exhale. Continue to put one foot in front of the other and rest assured, God’s timing is always just right.

2. Position yourself.

While everyone on the carousel enjoys the ride, only those in the outer row have a chance to snag a brass ring. In life, how we position ourselves influences the opportunities that will be within our reach. For example, if we want to position ourselves for success, we likely need to change which aisle of the grocery story we get most of our groceries and, more than likely we also need to physically get to the gym more than we have. Are you positioning yourself to stretch towards your goals? Or, is it time to make a move?

3. Reach.

It isn’t merely enough to ride a horse in the outer row, to have a chance to grab a ring, you must first stretch and reach. The brass ring won’t just fall into you hand because, you can only get one with effort. In life, we can have the best intentions but, if we don’t stretch and reach, we can miss the very opportunities that are right at our finger tips. Where do you need to stretch or grow so that you can make the most of life?

4. Adjust.

On the carousel, reaching for a ring didn’t mean you always got one. When the ring slipped through your grasp, you shifted, adjusted, or adapted so that you increased your chance of getting one the next time around. In life, we need to do the same. Situations that don’t turn out the way we’d intended can be the richest soil for growth. John Maxwell once said “test, fail, learn, improve.” There will be times that we fall on the path to our goals. Choose to fall forward.

5. Don’t give up.

Don’t stop stretching and reaching for your goals. If you reach one, set another. Life is a journey. Keep going. Shake of discouragement from what’s happened already. Refuse to let your missed opportunities or yesterday’s mistakes consume today. Get back on the proverbial horse and reach again!

It’s your turn.

Where are you in your journey? Are you stuck sitting on the sidelines watching others reach and obtain their goals but you’re still feeling like you’re empty handed? If so, it might be time to reassess your situation. Define what you’re reaching for. Position yourself to stretch. Reach, adapt, and go again. There’s enough time left on this ride for you to become who you were meant to be!

If this post encouraged you, why not share it or click to comment. I’d love to hear from you. Let me know how it inspired you or encouraged you to make an adjustment or take your next step. The “brass ring” we’re reaching for can be in any area of our lives.  Be intentional. Choose to stretch in the direction of your goals. You might just find a victory is right around the next bend within your reach.

Until next time friends, be blessed!

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