“Inspiration transforms a person from experiencing a culture of apathy to experiencing a world of possibility.” Scott Kaufman
It’s not uncommon for me to get a certain response when I tell people what I do (which is to help women lead inspired lives). This is what happens: the listener rolls her eyes and tells me “that’s a pretty tall order,” implying that living an inspired life is almost too far beyond what she can imagine for herself.
What does that say about the type of life they’re currently living?
When I teach a workshop about inspiration, no one has any trouble whatsoever describing how it feels to live an uninspired life, because sadly, most of us live this way too much of the time. And yet, when I ask what it feels like to be inspired, my audience is equally able to describe how that feels. Why is that? Because all of us - regardless of age, race, occupation, skill level, IQ - every one of us has had at least one moment of inspiration in our lives, and it was so memorable and so unique that we never forgot it. Which begs the question: if it felt so good and had such a good effect, why wouldn’t we actively seek out inspiration and make it a part of our lives?
I have some theories on why we give up on inspiration and fall back on our default settings. The first is that we believe our moments of inspiration are random and unpredictable and that waiting for them to happen is too time consuming when there are so many other things that have to get done. Another reason we don’t pay much attention is because we think that inspiration is really for artists or scientists - people who depend on new ideas for their livelihood or their success - but not us. A third theory is that we don’t really understand what inspiration is and why it’s desirable.
A new client recently said to me, “I don’t particularly want to lead a more inspired life, I just want to feel enthusiastic about the life I have”. It was a fascinating - and humorous - statement because the meaning of the two words, inspiration and enthusiasm, are so closely related. Did you know the meaning of inspiration is to “infuse or breathe into by God or spirit”? And that the meaning for enthusiasm is to be “en theos” or “in god”, in other words, to be inspired or possessed by a god? Practically speaking, is there really such a big difference between inspiration and enthusiasm?
Think for a moment about the quality of your daily life. Are you doing the best you can but finding yourself bored or stunted by the same-old, same-old routine? Do you feel stuck or trapped by your circumstances, whether in your professional or your personal life? Are you living a life based on what others expect of you to the extent that you’ve put your own ideas and potential on the back burner?
In each of these situations, you can pretty much feel the psychological wall that’s been put into place and prevents new ideas that carry a better way of doing things from entering your awareness. And this is precisely why inspiration is so necessary for you to have so you can take down that wall and live into your full potential.
Wherever it comes from, inspiration brings with it a new awareness, a vision, that motivates us to express or actualize it. The scope of that vision is not important. What is important is that new possibilities are contained within it, beyond our present limitations, and they're asking to be made manifest. When this happens, you can feel a sparkly sense of excitement and aliveness.
Inspiration is not as random as you may have been told. It can be invited, activated, encouraged and allowed to move us. Here are three reasons (backed by scientific research) that should “inspire” you to explore this phenomenon for yourself.
1. Inspiration evokes gratitude. And gratitude evokes a sense of connection and belonging. Connection and belonging evoke a sense of safety and abundance. All of which are based within you. There is nothing outside of you that can diminish them or take them away. There is nothing random or unpredictable about it. Can you get a sense of just how powerful this “base of operations” is?
2. Inspiration positively affects our creativity, our ability to be “in the flow,” to become more competent, more productive and attain our goals. That in turn, affects of our sense of self efficacy, self esteem and overall satisfaction.
3. Inspiration gives us the opportunity to discover who we are. How? By giving us a glimpse of what we’re capable through the limitless source of our own inner knowing rather than our limited knowledge base. That means we can tap into our potential for self expression which in turn, contributes to our well being, our sense of purpose, and our happiness.
If you'd like to know more about how to invite inspiration into your life, I invite you to click here to schedule your "inspiration analysis" today. Together we'll uncover what's in your way and the number one thing you can do to dissolve those blocks and move forward in your life.