“Inspiration” is such a great word: insight, creativeness, inventiveness, motivation, vision, brilliance, and so much more – all rolled together!
The brainstorm of inspiration is thrilling – that spark of creative energy where one moment you’re stuck, and the next, you’re off and running. But where do you go to find inspiration?
My closest friend finds it at the beach. She loves to walk the beach in any weather, at any time. She particularly enjoys beach walks on days when the fog envelops her, and she escapes into a timeless, formless atmosphere away from her day-to-day world, where the sound of the waves hitting the shore provides a peaceful backdrop. She’s revitalized. She texts me audio recordings of the sound in the hope that I can share the experience, even though I’m 3000 miles away.
Another friend finds inspiration through her daily workouts. Her favorite is a strenuous run along a rimrock trail. The air is crisp and cool, and the rising sun paints the wispy clouds with tendrils of pink and orange. She reaches the crest and looks down on the city and valley below. She posts pictures of the panoramic vista on Instagram, dappled shadows of the valley contrasting the early morning light on the surrounding hills. She’s pushed herself to her limits. Breathing hard, she’s energized, and the joy of accomplishment makes her feel like she can conquer any challenge that comes her way.
My daughter loves to go to the Getty, where she strolls the gardens and wanders the galleries. In these quiet spaces, her mind can drift and absorb the stillness and creative beauty that surrounds her. Nature, architecture, and art combine to inspire and motivate her.
I find inspiration in the early morning, snuggled under the down comforter, wrapped in my husband’s arms, with the only sound his gentle breathing as he sleeps. Our loving bond creates a peaceful, safe cocoon. In those moments, my mind solves the problems of my world and I form my intentions for the day. In those moments, I find inspiration to create word pictures and formulate intriguing plots for stories.
What do all of these have in common – what’s the key to inspiration? It’s finding that time and place where we can quiet the discordant sounds in our head and hear our inner voice. Stress makes inspiration elusive. Something wondrous begins to happen when we allow ourselves to experience the things we find beautiful or peaceful or invigorating – we find inspiration.
Candace Cook is a freelance writer from Southern California. She writes a blog at www.aging-with-attitude.com and offers business administration services at www.theresourcefulgeneralist.com.