Hello friends. The topic I have chosen to write about today is “on being inspired”. The reason this idea was on my mind is because – can you guess? – I was recently inspired! And, I don’t know about you, but I love being inspired. I know a lot of people try to be inspirations, but maybe to me that is too exhausting or daunting a thought, or I just don’t see how I would possibly be inspiring. “But,” I think to myself, “even if I can’t be inspiring, I can certainly be inspired!” And so I seek out ways to be inspired. One of my favorite ways to be inspired is to search on YouTube for commencement addresses from colleges and universities. And while I don’t limit myself to the Ivies, I will admit I find myself there often. For example, my most recent deeply profound inspiration came from watching the speech given by Professor Deepak Malhotra to the 2012 graduating Harvard MBA students. If you want to get excited about the possibilities for your life, I recommend you check it out. Go to YouTube and simply look it up using the above description. Some other great commencement addresses I have watched include the late Steve Jobs speaking to the class of 2005 at Stanford, Bill Gates speaking to the Harvard class of 2007, and if you want to laugh out loud while being inspired, check out Conan O’Brien’s speech to the Dartmouth class of 2011. (Disclaimer: Conan is a comedian by trade, therefore his speech is a little “unorthodox”, although ultimately truly inspiring.)
I’m not going to list here all the ways in which the aforementioned speeches were inspiring because my focus today is not about the specific messages of the speakers, but rather, as the title of this post states, “on being inspired.”
“Why,” you may ask yourself, “instead of choosing to share with us the content of these inspiring messages, would she write about the idea of being inspired?” Because the process of allowing yourself to be inspired is not always an automatic process. It is something that you have to be intentional about experiencing.
You see, being inspired requires something specific within yourself and that is your willingness to be open to learning from someone else. And, the more willing you are to learn from someone else, the more often you will find yourself inspired. If you think you know it all, you will be hard-pressed to be inspired because you will assume there is no one out there who could add to your storehouse of knowledge.
But, if you are willing to admit that you don’t know all the answers, then you have taken the first step to the amazing experience of being inspired. I’ll tell you something that I have learned about being inspired – it is hard to be in a bad mood when you have just been inspired because being inspired opens up to you all the possibilities that this world has for us.
Now, if you’re like me, you might find yourself feeling a bit overwhelmed by possibilities once you’ve been inspired, but that’s different. If you’ve truly been inspired, it ought to cause you to feel a bit overwhelmed in a sense because there is something that goes hand-in-hand with being inspired and that is feeling a burden. Not a burden in a negative, oppressive sense. But rather, when you are inspired you will feel a burden that this world is full of things to be done and you will recognize that you have a responsibility to do one of those multitude of things.
The fun, albeit daunting, part for you will be to then figure out what it is you are to do in the world. And then, to go do it!
And so today, I want to encourage you to find some way in which to be inspired! It may not be from watching commencement addresses (although I’d recommend it…), but find some way. Open your mind to the possibility that someone out there in your daily life can inspire you. And then try to find that person, that moment. I’ll guarantee you, even if the sky is gray, your world will seem brighter for it!
Until next time, have a truly inspired day!