Short Stories

Look For Your Golden Arches

Dream lofty dreams, and as you dream, so you shall become. Your vision is the promise of what you shall one day be; your ideal is the prophecy of what you shall at last unveil.

James Allen

Author & Philosopher

When my kids were young, I was a sales agent for a large Medicare company and I used to take them to work with me. One Saturday, I had Christian and Chaz, who may have been four and six at the time, with me at the office. It was a long day for them as I tried to catch up for the next week. 

As parents will do to keep kids “in line,” I promised them McDonald’s if they were good. 

“Can we get a Happy Meal?” Christian asked. 

“Of course,” I replied. 

“What about an apple pie?” added Chaz. 

“I will see your apple pie and raise you an ice cream cone to make it alamode!” Now I was hungry and ready to be good. 

They both loved to draw (they are artists for a living now!) and for six hours they drew, played quiet games and were generally very well behaved. A couple of co-workers even complimented them. 

We left late in the afternoon and began making the forty-five minute trip south towards our side of town. On one of the first exits, Chaz must have noticed the unmistakable Golden Arches from two miles away. The sign is a mile high and the yellow contrasted sharply against blue sky. I heard him whisper to Christian, 

“We are almost there!” 

But we didn’t stop. They didn’t say anything and neither did I… 

I kept driving. 

As you could imagine, we passed several exits that had McDonald’s signs that were visible from the exit and I could see the look of anticipation in their eyes turn to disappointment with each one we passed. Little Christian even began to cry, quietly… but never said a word. 

Finally, I turned onto the exit I had been waiting for –the “super” McDonald’s that had the mega play area on the inside and outside. As fate would have it, someone was having a birthday party and the Power Rangers were there! They allowed the boys to take part in the festivitiesFor about 3 hours they had the time of their lives. 

And I learned a very valuable lesson on hope and promises. It helps me even now when I want to “Fall Down On The Job” and lose my stamina for a project…or life. Here are five things you must do to keep the faith and finish strong, even in the face of challenges and delayed victories. 

  1. Do your part of the process. It is robbery to think you will get a victory where you have not done the workDo the work. Do what is required. Do your part and do it with gusto and zeal. Do not look at your neighbor, focus on you and what you have to do! 
  2. Be patient. In nature, a seed cannot be rushed (GMO’s notwithstanding!) to do what it does faster. Conditions can be optimal or challenging, but when a blade of grass does its thing, it can become a beautiful golf course, or crack the sidewalk. Patience always does its thing…if you let it! 
  3. Stay the course even when things do not go as you expect. It may look like you are being passed by and the exits are limited, but we live in a world of abundance. Opportunity is not limited, and you are not being left out. Persistence, perseverance and tenacity will be required to dig deeper into your reservoir of “I can do this” resolve. It didn’t work yesterday? Dig deep…try it again today! 
  4. Keep the faith. If you have done your part, are patient and persistent, something positive is going to happen. You may learn another way through “failure,” but if you keep doing and keep believing in yourself and the outcomes, positive things will happen. Conceive it, Believe it and Achieve it! 
  5. Remember your promises. A goal is a promise you make to yourself. Do not break your promises –keep your word to yourself. Review what you desire and ignite that child-like hope that gave you the audacity to make them in the first place. Motivation is created externally; inspiration is from the inside/out. Inspire yourself with your own dreams…encourage yourself! 

I encourage you right now to dig a little deeper, do not fall down on the job. Stretch out your neck in anticipation of something good today, and… 

Look For Your Golden Arches! 

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Brandon L Clay

Storyteller Strategist Coach

I am a storyteller and have been using simple stories to help people see bigger possibilities for their lives. They are based on my real life experiences and I believe they will be relevant for your life, too.

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