When Everyone Else Only Sees Our Past

Opaque ink on Black Card Stock – Words: Pleasant Rowland

In 1986 Pleasant Rowland invented a new toy for girls. She put herself in the “Girl Business’. Her American Girl Dolls brought history to life by selling historical books and stories with each doll. This former elementary school teacher saw a way to elevate and educate young girls about their possibilities and their history, while creating a legacy based on knowledge and truth.

It takes great heart to want to elevate a simple thing, like a child’s doll, and turn it into a vehicle for improving the way that child thinks. Add to that a mission focused on bringing something new to the market by reinventing a play thing. Knowing you love and admire it, and believing that other people out there will feel the same way – THAT was this entrepreneur’s genius.

There are lots of great ideas out there. People have them everyday. The difference between those who succeed and those who may not even try is the desire and willingness to do the work. Being called crazy, silly, or even just plain stupid can bring any of us to our knees. Being willing to get back up and keep going is what separates the successful from the forever forlorn. I have no doubt that Pleasant Rowland was reminded that she was an elementary school teacher not a toy designer. People love to put us in our place by throwing our talents and skills at us in the form of limitations or condemnations. It is in those moments where we need to “see” beyond our current self to believe that what we desire to bring to the table is more that what we have been in our past. We must believe in our future, our idea and stick to our guns when everyone else only sees our past.

When we engage our heart and partner that with a great mission, we have the power to be inventive and unstoppable…assuming we are willing to do the work. Heart + Mission + Hard Work can conquer anything, even the toy business.

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