zenhabits : breathe

The Little Guide to Inspiration

“You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.” - Jack London

Post written by Leo Babauta.

We all have days when we’re just not very inspired, when we need passion and creativity breathed into us.

I know I do.

For anyone who needs a little shove, whose creativity has dried up, who needs to be moved … I humbly offer this simple guide.

While I never claim to have all the answers, nor that my way is the only way, I share here some things I’ve learned about inspiration, some tricks I’ve learned that work for me.

I’m often in need of inspiration, but in all cases I’ve found it. And it’s a wonderful thing.

What Is Inspiration?

Many people think of it as an elusive quality that can’t be forced, and yet it can be found if you look for it.

Others think it’s a way to find ideas, but it’s more than ideas … it’s being moved to put those ideas into action.

Inspiration is finding something else that is divinely inspired (people, nature, amazing ideas), having that inspiration breathed into you (“breath” is the root of “inspiration”), and then taking action on it. Creating, doing, inspiring others.

How to Find Inspiration

Inspiration is just about everywhere you can look, if you’re looking for it. That’s the key: to keep your eyes open. Too often we miss beautiful sources of inspiration, because we’re too busy thinking about other things.

Be observant. See everything around you as a possible source of inspiration.

Some possible sources of inspiration:

Just keep your eyes open, at all times, staying present whenever possible, and allow yourself to breathe in that inspiration.

How to Stay Inspired

Inspiration isn’t just a one-time thing. You’ll need it on a regular basis.

When you practice the above method — keeping your eyes open, staying present, and breathing in inspiration — you get better at it. It becomes a skill you can use at any time, and you’ll use it often.

Some tips for keeping the inspiration coming:

Now Take Action

Don’t just feel inspired. Take this inspiration and use it, be moved, and do something. Channel that inspiration into creating something amazing.

Put that something out into the world, and in turn, you will inspire others.

Having trouble taking action? Read The Little Rules of Action.

“For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream.” ~Vincent van Gogh



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