I was lying in bed talking to a friend after a long day of deadlines, appointments + meetings. I got a little giddy as I said goodbye to her, knowing it was bed time. I loooooove sleeping– and girlfriend, I was ready to hunker down.
But as I was just about to fall asleep, I had a new idea pop up for one of my art pieces–I think it was a result of seeing something on Instagram earlier (I love that community). The idea was a new style I wanted to play around with, so I jolted back to being fully awake + thinking about how I can incorporate this into my work.
I was kind of annoyed to get this inspiration so late at night–I was tired and not in the mood to be inspired! But it got me thinking about how inspiration flows in my life.
I realized this good-idea-before-sleep scenario is pretty common for me; the shower is another hot spot for budding break-throughs. It’s when I’m completely relaxed that these new ideas come floating up effortlessly, simply because I’m letting them. Can you relate?
And inspiration usually comes when I least expect it; I’m chilling out, enjoying the moment and letting my mind wander, then….wham! The new idea/thought/feeling becomes crystal clear. For me, it’s just about being open + allowing the energy to flow through.
Inspiration can come in many forms–it can be a new recipe, a different color for a painting, a great piece of furniture for the bedroom, a course that expands my world view, a specific taste that satisfies a deep craving or a song that calms me down.
Inspiration is our subconscious affirming to us what our soul is yearning for. It’s our way of attracting what truly nourishes us.
The word “inspiration” literally means,”in” + spirare “to breathe”. When we are inspired, we are taking in our unique breath of life--whatever that breath or stimulus may be.
So how do you invite inspiration in?
- Be open to it. Inspiration is a personal thing–what inspires you may not inspire someone else, so do not be judgey about what shows up for you. Being open to it is the most important part of it–actually recognizing it showing up.
- Be prepared. Keep a notepad by your bed or use the recording option on your phone when you have a great idea; some people (aka: me) even try to make an mnemonic device so that they remember the thought later.
- Get clear about your joy. When you know what makes you happy, you will feel more motivated to act on the inspiration you get from it.
- Strike while the iron is hot. Inspiration is the gateway to action. When you are looking to be inspired, surround yourself with the thoughts, people + things that get your heart pumping. When your muse shows up, grab a chair and listen intently (even when you’re about to fall asleep).
- Keep expanding. Being inspired comes in many forms so keep your eyes open for opportunities to grow + learn + try new things. An open heart will help you expand in many directions along the way.
- Welcome the act of being inspired, no matter what you’re doing. Inspiration is part of your natural state, but sometimes it can feel a little inconvenient because it shows up at random times. So when you are relaxed and feeling joyful, most likely you will receive some messages from your higher calling. Know that the more inspired you are, the more inspired you will become, so just go with it!
- Trust. This is a biggie–trust that feeling inspired is divine intervention showing up in your life. In some way, you called it forth and it is being answered. Hooray!
Inspiration is a personal preference–what gets me excited may do nothing for you; the important part is to figure out what makes your heart soar, and keep pursuing THAT. If you surround yourself with what usually gives you butterflies, it will just be a matter of time + space before you’re feeling your next jolt of excitement.
PS. Have some thoughts on this topic? Tell me about it over on facebook!