October 2, 2018

Are You The Little Engine That Could Or The Little Engine That Can’t?

I recently spent a lovely day aboard the Verde Valley Railroad. It was a 20 mile journey on a restored vintage train. As we enjoyed the beautiful scenery we heard the history of the railroad.

The Verde Canyon Railroad (formerly the Verde Valley Railroad, operated by the Santa Fe, Prescott and Phoenix Railroad), was financed by Senator William A. Clark for a hefty $1.3 million. A miracle of engineering, the 38-mile line was built in just one year, from 1911 to 1912. It took 250 men using 200 mules, picks and shovels and lots of Dupont black powder explosives to lay these rails. Today, the same railroad would cost in excess of $38 million.

I can’t even imagine what it was like for these men and the mules in the heat of the summer and then I was transported back to my childhood and an all time favorite book- The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper.

The perseverance displayed in The Little Engine that could , exemplifies how each of us can face the the trials and tribulations of life and business. There are four character traits she wrote about in the book that if applied to our lives will give us the perseverance to go on even when times get tough. When we recognize and develop knowledge, strength, courage and joy we can move forward and say- “I thought I could, I thought I could.”


The little blue engine had the knowledge that her purpose was to pull the train to the other side of the mountain. She knew she was designed to pull the trains. And she knew where she had to go – the other side of the mountain.

We too need to know who we are, what our purpose is and how we are going to get there. Do you have a road map for your business? Of course there will twists and turns but having a road map will surely make the path easier to follow.

It is also much easier when we have our community with us to help along the way. People cheering us on. Knowing that we are not alone on the is entrepreneurial journey. Do you have that network in place?


It was hard for the little engine to get over that mountain and she repeated over and over again- “I think I can, I think I can.” As she did this she developed more strength and started going faster and faster. She had never done anything so hard before but as she gained the strength the more she tried.

As we try hard things in our business we find out that we are stronger than we think we are. There is no straight path to success in business and often we need to dig deep down inside ourselves to find the hidden strength.


The ability to move forward even when facing a difficult challenge is courage. This is stepping out of your comfort zone and possibly feeling uncomfortable for a bit. Once you accomplish the difficult task, you have the courage to move forward and face new challenges. Live streaming and making videos is very courageous and oh so life changing once you do it. The little engine never quit. Quitting was not an option. Each small accomplishment we do in our life and business builds up our confidence in ourselves so that we can conquer new tasks.


Once the little engine got to the other side of the mountain there was extreme joy for all!! Think about that for a moment. When in your business have you reached a goal and then said to yourself- I knew I could do this! The little engine felt extreme joy for the journey being over, joy for doing a great job and joy for helping others. Similar to business when we set a goal and reach that huge goal we feel so great for the accomplishment and the joy for those who we have helped and who were counting on us.

Believe in yourself. You can do this and get to the other side of the mountain in your business. Will it take hard work, knowledge, strength, perseverance and courage? Darn right it will, but think of the joy on the other side of the mountain!!

If you are stuck, unclear or just want more joy in your business let’s chat. I would LOVE to hear your story.



Karen Joseph | SEVEN Networking







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