Here’s a quote that’s often used in discussions about how to get inspired:
“Inspiration actually emerges from the soil of action: perspiration is just the water that nourishes it” ~ August Turak
I’m fascinated by what it takes to get inspired, and be inspiring. Because if you’re not inspired, you can’t inspire others. And if you can’t inspire others, you can’t lead.
Turak says there’s no point sitting around waiting for inspiration to magically appear. He says you need to do something, and then the inspiration will show up. He says you need to take small steps towards an ultimate goal. And, when you work with others who have similar goals or can keep you on track, you’ll remain inspired.
Really, that’s a recipe for motivation, and it all makes perfect sense.
Let’s take it one step further. What if inspiration is different? What if it’s born of purpose, a path of devotion, even, that deeply matters to you?
What if too much action destroys your inspiration? What if too much doing crushes your creativity?
And then, how do you get inspired again?
I’m learning (slowly!) that too much doing and running over myself to get everything done snuffs my flame. One of the worst experiences for me is to lose my passion and not care. It’s never true, of course, that I don’t care. It’s just that I need to do a few other things to get myself back on track. I need to disconnect from the noise so I can reconnect with myself and what inspires me. Then, with that level of alignment, I have what I need to inspire others – and the news becomes very good.
I love Arianna Huffington’s take on all this:
“‘Restore connection’ is not just for devices, it is for people too. If we cannot disconnect, we cannot lead. Creating the culture of burnout is opposite to creating a culture of sustainable creativity. This is something that needs to be taught in business schools. This mentality needs to be introduced as a leadership and performance-enhancing tool”
Need some help? Try these tips:
1. Know yourself & your anchors
When are you at your best? What are you doing? What are you NOT doing? What do you need to stay in your zone? What takes you out of your zone?
If it’s 30 minutes meditating in the morning, walking the dog, pruning your roses, nine hours sleep or rearranging the cutlery drawer (I don’t know whether anyone really does that, but anyway) … then do it.
Know what anchors you and keeps you grounded every single day. No excuses.
Want to lead? We need you to be your best. And it starts with you, on your terms. Always.
2. Get back to your purpose, your path of devotion
I call it the path of devotion because when you’re clear about your purpose, it matters, big time. What you do and how you do it matters too, big time.
There are lots of other jobs I could do. But none mattered to me like my own business does. I have a big vision and, from the bottom of my heart, I truly believe the world needs more inspiring leaders. Never more passionate have I been. This is more than a job for me, it’s my purpose and mission.
You need to know why you do what you do. It’s where your inspiration sizzles and hums.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: purpose is where it all starts – and ends.
3. Give yourself a ‘high 5’ every time you choose being
What I mean is this: stop placing doing above being. Time out is essential. As Arianna Huffington commands, disconnect. Stop. Stop. Stop!
Giving yourself a ‘high 5’ for being is like punching the air every time you make a mistake. A big mindset shift for so many of us.
Some of my best ideas come when I’m not doing anything about trying to make them happen. In the shower. Doing the dishes. In fact, my inspiration for the Wise Talks program came while I was lying on the floor daydreaming.
What are your favourite ways of being? What if you didn’t always put them last?
How would your life be different? How would you lead differently?
Stay inspired so you can inspire us. Please.