Life is like taking swings at a piñata (A piñata is a container hung up at parties to be beaten with sticks until sweets or presents fall out.) It’s also an excellent metaphor. There’s no external evidence that we’re making progress – that’s why people often quit before getting to the part of their lives where the sweets come out.
Story: At the birthday party of a 5-year-old there was a piñata, and one by one, the kids put on a blindfold. They stepped up, were given a bat, spun around, and then told to swing at the piñata. The first couple of kids were disoriented and didn’t know which direction to swing. With the help from the rest of the children, no apparent damage was done to the piñata – or so it seemed! Those kids got a little frustrated, but they didn’t realize that the piñata was slowly breaking down. Many of them made solid contact and did some damage, whether they knew is or not.
The compounding effect of pounding on the piñata was making a difference. Every time a blow landed, those kids made invisible progress, growing ever closer to the goal of busting it wide open, but still, the piñata would not break. When all the children had their swings, the mom blindfolded the birthday boy, and he stepped up for his turn. You know what happened next. More than a dozen children scurried to gobble up all the treats that had fallen from the piñata.
Was it that one shot that busted the piñata open? Absolutely not. It was the compounded accumulation of all those hits that contributed to achieving the goal of getting the sweets.
Life Lesson: Too many people quit their business, their workouts, or their relationships before the sweets comes out! Although they’re making progress, it doesn’t always show up externally. Just like the children, they are making invisible progress in their life.
Unfortunately, most people don’t stick around long enough to realize the outcomes from that progress.
When you bust open a piñata, you get an undeniable rush. In fact, the harder it is to bust open, the more intense the rush is. As you keep swinging, anticipation builds. Adrenaline kicks in. Confidence grows – all because you didn’t give up.
Take your swings. As many as you need. Get those sweets. Many piñatas are waiting for you to bust open and enjoy.
From the book, ‘The Power of One More’ by Ed Mylett