Daily Doses of Inspiration
At the gym this morning, there were many eager faces I’ve never seen before getting their daily sweat on – one step closer to newly established fitness goals. Sitting on the leg press machine in new sweats purchased in the Christmas sales, I couldn’t help but wonder why I felt so unmotivated. After all, it is that time of the year to reassess the past and make bright shiny goals for the year ahead.
I do a few stretches, not able to muster up the enthusiasm I once had for squats, and head back to work. Sitting back at my computer, I can’t help but wonder where my passion went. I recall it being there, bubbling above the surface, glowing…now…only flickering and buried somewhere deep. I am determined to find ways to unleash it.
Sometimes we just need a little inspiration in our life, whether it is for fitness goals, creative pursuits, business endeavors or everyday activities. We find ourselves wanting to connect to something larger. We want to feel moved – to create joy passion and purpose. We want the capacity to feel, explore and express ourselves. Sometimes we have it. Sometimes we don’t.
If you are feeling a little disconnected or uninspired there are many small things you can do in your day that may give you that a-ha business idea or just a smile on your face. Everyone finds sources of inspiration in different places, however you need not look far to find it:
Go au naturel: People have been turning to nature to solve problems from physics to science for millions of years. When all else fails, turn to nature for a creativity boost. Take a walk barefoot on the beach and feel the sand between your toes. Capture the immense beauty of nature with photography. Raise your awareness by meditating outdoors and focus your senses on your natural surroundings.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better. -Albert Einstein
In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous. - Aristotle
Read, read and read: Read biographies about the lives of those whose creativity, innovativeness or entrepreneurship you admire. Or read classics that are so beautifully written they have stood the test of time and are devoured over and over again. Journal your own life and look back at it. Read everything you can get your hands on – blogs, papers, magazines – and anything outside of your normal interests to widen your knowledge and discover new connections.
Watch the big screen: Every once and a while you come across a beautiful movie that leaves you awed and buries so deep into your mind that you will never forget the characters and their experiences. Movies such Roberto Benigni’s Life is Beautiful and most the most recent, Revenant, a story of survival, redemption and the tenacity of the human spirit, move and inspire.Documentaries, Ted Talks, and you-tube clips are other great sources of inspiration.
Establish an on-line presence: Sitting in front of your computer? Participate in a forum with a common interest group or even set up a dating profile. You can find everything and everyone online. We are so connected it easy to find others and interests that will push you in new directions.
Music: Studies have shown that just by listening to music we can stimulate our creative juices. It takes our mind off the task at hand, giving it a chance to wonder into new ideas and solutions. Daniel Levitin, a professor of Psychology, Behavioral Neuroscience and Music at McGill University devotes an entire chapter in his book, The Organized Mind, to this widely studied subject.
Without music, life would be a mistake. - Friedrich Nietzsche
Try something new: Go outside your comfort zone.Just by changing your surroundings you can change your perspective. Try taking a different route to work, listening to another genre of music, eating exotic food, or attempting a new activity you have always wanted to try.Expand your exposure and you’ll expand your mind.
Life begins at the end of your comfort zone – Neale Donald Walsch
Travel: Go see how the rest of the world lives. You will discover new ways of doing things, new ways of interacting, and gain a fresh perspective. Travel is one of the greatest sources of inspiration you give yourself.
Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all of one’s lifetime. – Mark Twain
Get physical: Occupying your body with physical pursuits can stimulate the mind. Physical tasks exist in this moment only, taking your mind away from the future or past, with the positive benefit of keeping you alert and focused on the present. Physical exercise helps your brain create new neurons and ideas.
As you can see, there are loads of sources of inspiration at your fingertips. The above sources only skim the surface. I invite you to share your sources of inspiration and help others feel moved and create happiness and purpose in their lives.