Inspiration is the experience you have when someone or something sparks new ideas and possibilities. The spark of inspiration feels like a burst of positive energy and motivation. It can transform your mindset, changing how you see your abilities and the world.
Beauty in art and music can spark creativity. The bravery of others can motivate you to face your fears. A mountainous landscape can stir you to take long climbs or hikes. Signs of spring—crocuses, cherry blossoms and chirping birds, may energize you to start new projects.
Moments of inspiration are fleeting. But, we can create and sustain these moments through intentional practice. In other words, we can cultivate a habit of inspiration. The key is knowing what inspires you and then deliberately seeking out those experiences.
So often the experiences, things, and people that inspire us reflect our values—our principles and sense of what’s important in life. Experiences with music and art may inspire you because you value creative endeavor and self expression. Witnessing the fierce determination of someone in the face of challenges may resonate with your value of persistence and push you not to quit. The loss of social contact in quarantine may highlight your value of connection and motivate you to find other ways to connect with other.
Research shows that a regular inspiration practice leads to more visionary and strategic thinking, and enhances our ability to think beyond apparent obstacles. It’s led to much needed innovations in technology, medicine, transportation. It can be the the fuel that enables us to work on achieving goals.