Day #33: What Inspires us? People!

Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Theresa,Nelson  Mandela and Martin Luther King Jnr , what do these people have in common? They are all people we regularly cite as inspiration. We consider them people who stand for the ideals we aspire to. These people and many more people we find around us everyday inspire us to be the best we can be in our daily lives.

I asked some colleagues which individual inspires them, most people mentioned their dad, mum, older brother , a friend or even someone they don’t really know.  I’m sure you all know at least one person who, regardless of what he or she does has contagious positive, creative energy. Those people inspire you because they stir something in you.Just by being around you,they make you want to be better. People who don’t wait for life circumstances to get perfect (nothing ever does)  to go after what they want. Those are the people who allow themselves to think outside of the box, who don’t let naysayers or pessimists to crush their dreams, who simply follow the deepest desires of their heart and allow themselves to be who they are.

Take this girl in the video for example, most people feel inspired by her because she is doing something we all wish we have the courage to do.‘Dance like no one is watching’.

Nelson Mandela after his incarceration for 27 years by the apartheid regime in South Africa, preached a message of reconciliation upon his release from prison. Most people found this unbelievable. How do you extend a hand of peace and love to someone or people who imprisoned you for 27 years,tortured you and took away everything you ever had? That’s not what normal people would do and I am sure we would understand if he decided to declare vengeance day. 

There are more stories about Martin Luther King Jnr or Mother Theresa and a lot more people we know and people we don’t even know. The point is, we have  those people around us  and we can be those people to some other people.

I feel deep appreciation for people who choose to honor their heart’s desires and have courage to follow their dreams regardless of   consequences because they teach us by example that it’s perfectly possible to live a  fulfilled life motivated by love and turn your dreams into reality.

Day #32:What Inspires Us? Fear

Today I am starting the series ‘What inspires Us’? To understand what really inspires people. What drives people to do the things they do.I am not sure what we are going to find, so stay with me on this one. To write about this, I decided to put this question to myself,’what really inspires me?’. I have to admit, it’s a difficult question. Mainly because many things inspire me. Beauty, in nature, in music, in people, ordinary people doing extraordinary things, moments of connection, moments of  loneliness, moments when you know you are doing something bigger than you, the list goes on.

However, today I want to write about one of the key things that inspire me.Fear.

We think of fear as a negative emotion and we are told to find ways to deal with fear in our lives by guys in the self-help business.But I like to consider fear as a friend. I think of fear as warning signal that something is wrong and I have to fix it before it’s too late. If I have  test and I’m scared, the signal I am getting is: I am not prepare enough and I have to prepare more.

The crux of my argument is,fear itself is not a bad thing.It depends on how you use it or how you let it use you. We are all scared, especially in those moments when you want to do something bigger than you.It’s a signal that the status quo is under attack.’Danger’ it screams, ‘you are going to make both of us look like fools’. Whenever I get this, rather than shutting it off, I check it, think of what I need to improve to make me feel the situation is under control. I never let fear stop me from doing something.I let it guide me to doing something better.

I am scared of so many things:As a kid I was scared of moving shadows in the dark,creatures with many heads I see in my dreams, scared of water, still am. Now as an adult, my range of fears are different. Fear of being average, fear of not living up to expectation,fear of writing a post or book no one is ever going to read, fear someone might say no, fear of failing, looking like an idiot before friends and family, fear of what people might think,of not keeping a promise. The list is endless.

What is important to me is not fear.I’ve learned to embrace fear as both motivating and inspiring. These days, if something scares me,my first impulse is no longer to cover my ears and avoid it. I’ve learned that if something scares me, it’s often worth doing. . Am I going to stop and not ask just because someone might say no?Not really. I let that fear teach me to ask in a better way.When I sit down to write a post like this and fear shows up, I check everything again to be sure I have written something  worth reading.

This is one of the things that inspire me.What inspires you?How do you use fear?

Day #31:Welcome to the next 970 Days if Inspiration

Today marks thirty days since this challenge started. Thank you to everyone who stuck around and read the posts. We now have the next 970  days to go to make it a thousand days of inspiration.

Although this blog started as a trivial challenge, trying to do something for thirty days, writing a simple post everyday has been a source of inspiration to me and I am sure to everyone who reads some of the posts.Even though the goal was to write about things that inspire me and the people around me, I discovered this can be inspiring for other people too.

I have taken 2 lessons away from this experience in the last few days:

1.Goals setting: Setting and achieving a goal is not just about getting something, it is about what it makes us. Here is what I mean, setting a goal to write a post everyday for 30 days and achieving it is not just about the goal.(So what? Anyone can do that!). It is about who I have become as a result of this goal. The person who sits down everyday to think of and write one thing that is meaningful. And I know my day is not complete if I haven’t turned in my post for the day. I am more excited about learning and reading new things because I know I get a chance to share them in a meaningful way with other people.That’s the person I have become as a result of this small goal.It’s not exactly rocket science but you get the idea!

2.What inspires me?:After I started writing this, I discovered LinkedIN also started a series called: “What Inspires Me.”. Where thought leaders and LinkedIN influencers share what inspires them.The good thing is, different things inspire different people. Our sources of inspiration vary widely, but virtually no one disputes the importance of being inspired. For some, inspiration is a memorable phrase, for others, a jarring or enlightening experience. Still others find inspiration in a key individual or group of people in their lives. Some found themselves turning back to the same work of art, piece of literature or dramatic moment again and again to re-ignite their drive.

Whatever inspires you. join me everyday as we explore this together. And if you like or enjoy what you read, please pass it along and let’s spread the inspiration bug.If you also have ideas on how this could be better, please share them with me and I promise I’ll take it serious.

Day#30:The Boomerang Effect of Kindness

It doesn’t take much to smile at a stranger, say thank you to the cashier or hold the door open for someone – these small acts of kindness can brighten up anyone’s day and take minimal effort. Perpetuated moments of thoughtfulness and consideration show the concept of paying it forward, resulting in a ripple effect of goodwill. Created by the nonprofit Life Vest Inside, this inspiring video demonstrates how far the power of kindness can go, in the end boomerangs back to where it began.

 

Day #29: 5 Steps for Turning Dreams into Reality

Meet Karen. She decided that she wanted to master the art of dance. With no formal training or background, Karen set her mind to learning how to groove, and as seen in this video, she dances like a pro. What’s her secret?

Karen laid out five guidelines which helped her finesse her dance skills:
1. Practice every day
2. Set goals you can actually control
3. Become your own coach
4. Learn from free online resources
5. Take classes or receive professional instruction

Try this formula to turn your dream into reality. It may work for you, too.

Day #28: Backdoor to Productivity: Create a “To-Not-Do” List

Today, personal productivity is the new dieting. Like food and those tasty desserts, the average professional, student or young person now have more things screaming for our attention. The bad part, most of those are really good stuffs we need and we would like to do. Problem, we can’t do everything so we have to choose.

But as the wise Elizabeth Gilbert points out in the short video clip below, it’s not just saying no in general or declining what we don’t find interesting. It’s saying no to things we actually want to do.

So our best way out, and not following the traditional advice to create ‘To do Lists’,is to consider turning that advice on its head and make a to-not-do list instead.

Tim Ferriss gives examples of some things on the “To-Not-Do” list on his 4hourworkweek blog

Day #27: 11 Most Inspiring Videos of All Time.

We all like being inspired. Well, the idea of writing a blog for 1000 days of inspiration was a quest to see if it’s possible to be consistently inspired for 1000 days.While there are many ways to be inspired, one great way is to watch a short video. From my experience and talking to a lot of people, I came up with a list of 11 of some of the most inspiring videos I have seen in a long time. Here is to inspiration!

1.A Pep Talk from Kid President to You 

2.Susan Boyle 1st Audition on “Britain’s Got Talent”:

3.Al Pacino in Any Given Sunday – “Inch By Inch”:

4.Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford Commencement Address

5.How Bad Do You Want It? (Success) HD: 

6. Powerful Inspirational true story…Don’t give up! 

7.INSPIRATIONAL – HOW GREAT I AM 

8. THIS IS WATER – David Foster Wallace’s Amazing Speech :

9.Never, Ever Give Up. Arthur’s Inspirational Transformation! :

10.Miracle-Herb Brooks” Pre-Game Speech:

11.Nick Vujicic.No arms, No legs,No worries: 

These videos inspire us all to be our best selves, to never give up, and to keep dreaming big. Now it’s your turn. Which of these videos is your favorite? What video did I miss? How do you get and stay inspired? Let me know in the Comments section below, and here’s to inspiring each other to do amazing things!