Some years back I had the good fortunate to be in Charles Schultz studio to meet and talk with him for a few minutes. The creator of Peanuts and such characters as Snoopy, Linus, Woodstock, Lucy and the legendary Charlie Brown.
One of the things I ask him was "Where in the world do you get all your ideas for your characters, your illustrations,etc?" He smiled a bit and then gave a simple answer, "Oh I just look around. There's an awful lot that goes on everyday for one to look at and often I get ideas from just looking around." In other words he looked for opportunities. He paid attention to what went on around him.
I once ask my Hall of Fame Songwriter friend Dicky Lee similar question, "Where do you get your ideas for the songs you have written." "Oh I just kinda watch what goes on, look at things people say or talk about." I once heard Vince Gill tell a story about going to breakfast at a place he often frequents, as he started to sit down with the locals he ask one of the fellas, "How you doin' this morning?" The fella answered by saying, "Well I'm down to my last bad habit." Whoa. What? Vince immediately said to the guy, "Hey I think I can write about that, can I use that line?"
Interesting isn't it how some folks pay attention to what happens around them, what is going on and then there are others who never seem to get out of their own world. How some folks see and look for opportunities and others never to seem to see anything but themselves.
Tomorrow, this week you and I will have opportunities. We might have an opportunity to smile and say a sincere thank you to someone that does something for us. How about the person who gets our coffee at a breakfast or fast foods place. A thank you or an acknowledgement to a mail man that goes out of his way in a delivery. A teacher who takes a special interest in one of our loved ones. An opportunity to make a child's day a bit more special by acknowledging their wave/ hello to us as they wait on our corner for their bus. An opportunity to give a bit of attention to that "old person" sitting by themselves at some out of the way place we happen to be. How about nod or thank you wave to the person who lets us into an early morning traffic line.
Schultz, Lee and Gill over the years pay attention, they paid attention to opportunities that were presented to them. Thus their lives were enhanced and think what they have done for others just by "paying attention."
One thing most all of us have in common with those three is we all have twenty-four hours in day. We can choose what we want to do with it.
August 24, 2017