Ain’t nobody know the business of success through play better than Disney. I know this not because I love Walt Disney World and it’s my family’s home away from home. (In fact, the intentional ‘success through play’ isn’t really evident when you’re at WDW because you’re so immersed in the fun and the environment that you don’t consider the work behind the scenes to make that so.)
Nope. I know that Disney is the expert on success through play because I heard it from the horse’s mouth. Gary Buchanan (@gary_jerry) is the Social Media Managing Editor for Disney Parks and if you’ve ever heard him speak you know how motivating he is. It’s not just his delivery (he’s all in, no slapstick goes unexplored), but what he’s delivering: The Disney dynasty outlook on business and life. Let me break it down for you.
1. You gotta recharge through play.
Someone once asked me what I did for play. I actually cocked my head to one side and said, “I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about. I don’t have time to play.” And that was my problem. Burned out? I bet you’re not playing.
Sing out loud. Dance around your office. Laugh with some friends. Draw something. Recharge through play. Your work will still be there after you play a little and giving your brain a break allows it to come up with new stuff. You know why your best ideas come right before you go to sleep? Because your brain is finally relaxing. Try to let your brain relax more often.
2. Take a step back.
When it’s your baby it’s hard not to be too close. When you’re too close, your nose gets smashed up against the window. Take a step back and look at the big picture (your nose will thank you). Ask some other people to look at your ideas and projects, then listen to their feedback.
And since you’re already in play mode (see above — you should be in play mode), take your imagination out and dust it off. Go all in and imagine something new that may or may not build on what you already have. And if it’s so crazy it can’t possibly work, be sure to try that one first.
“The difference between what Buzz called a ‘laser’ & what Woody said was just a ‘little lightbulb that blinks’ . . . IMAGINATION.”
3. Try something new.
Comfort levels are called that for a reason. You’re more likely to grow when you leave them for a bit. And you know what’s convenient? Playing (you’re playing and imagining by now, right?) allows you to try something new. Boom. Now you’re multitasking and, bonus, it’s FUN. The catch? Well . . .
4. Don’t ignore what works.
You don’t have to scrap everything and start over (which is my answer to a lot of things). Know what works, play with the rest. Ask someone else what they think and ask them to play around with you. It’s always more fun to have a friend along anyway.
What do you do to find success through play? What’s your go-to recharge?
I was invited to the Disney Social Media Moms event in May, 2013. Disney didn’t ask me to post about anything I experienced or heard, but I experienced and heard some amazing things and wanted to share them with you.