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A CANADIAN EXPAT'S EXPERIENCES AND OBSERVATIONS LIVING IN THE WINDY CITY!

lake-michigan-january-6-2017-evanston-2

At this time of year I find myself in a rather introspective mood.  I guess it has to do with the start of a New Year, the cold weather keeping me indoors, and plenty of time to reflect on what has occurred over the past year or so.

This morning I started to think about inspiration.  Had I experienced inspiration during this past year?  What inspired me?  Did I act on the inspiration? Or perhaps a more basic question to myself:  Do I really understand what inspiration actually means?

New beginnings with a new year well under way mean change.  I guess inspiration is similar to motivation.  Either way, to me I suppose it is the key factor needed to improve something in my life, to acknowledge that what I have been doing isn’t exactly making me happy.  Can I change something to be happier without an inspiration to set it in motion?

I don’t think I can.  Come to think of it, I feel we all need a little spark of inspiration to get us excited about making changes for the better.  Inspiration can equate to a happy payoff, don’t you think?  Then why is it that our inspirations sometimes fall smack dab (I love that saying!) in front of us, merely to become part of our ‘what if’ pile of dreams and aspirations?

We don’t seem to take advantage of inspiration as much as we should.  We can have a brilliant idea that can set in motion a fantastic new path for us; and yet, the inspiration to act upon it merely fizzles away, never to see the light of day.

Why do we do this to ourselves?  I can’t tell you how many times during the past year I have asked people the following question:  “If you could do anything you really thought would bring you happiness, what would you do?” I received plenty of answers, each one varied in its size and complexity.  However, what seemed to me as the common factor with each comment was not the lack of inspiration.  It was the fear of failure keeping the ‘dream makers’ in limbo.

It didn’t seem to me that these folks were without dreams and aspirations; certainly, they didn’t appear to be ‘inspirationless’ (not a word, but I quite like it).  Their fear of being unsuccessful kept them stuck in their current situations.  In other words, these wonderful, passionate, and truly inspirational ideas were carefully crafted and detailed.  And yet, most of them were placed in the proverbial ‘can’t do it’ pile of wishes and wants.

So this morning I started to think about the fear of failure and how incredibly powerful these thoughts can be.  We humans are a funny lot, aren’t we?  If we know there is a possibility that something we do can bring us happiness, what on earth could be the reason for us to not do something about it?  Ah yes, I digress;  it’s the ‘fear factor’ thing again.  We almost seem to be content with ‘what we know’ even though that isn’t exactly making us jump for joy, if you will.  We might say to ourselves, “Okay, maybe I’m not following my dreams, but at least I know what I am getting with what I already know.”

Did someone say the word, “complacency” just now? Hhhhmmmm, well here’s what I know.  I know that the number one emotion above all else that we humans want is to be happy.  That’s it; the basic, innate need and want is to feel happiness, whatever that means to an individual.

Okay, now I have been chomping at the bit to say this to you (and to myself):  I want to challenge you to dust off one of the inspiring thoughts you have so cleverly tossed onto the scrap heap for fear of its reward falling as flat as a pancake.

Even a little snippet of inspiration will do for starters.  What is it?  What will taking that spark and trying it out look like?  If it doesn’t work, guess what?  It simply means that it has made more room for you to try out some other, even better inspiration to bring happiness to your front door.

In case you were wondering, I chose the photo in this post because of its meaning to me.  I took this picture recently (Lake Michigan from an inspiring vantage point in Evanston, Illinois).  The lake isn’t completely frozen; however, the surface is presently adorned with a sheet of ice.  But the currents continue to generate movement below the surface.  The analogy for me is that although things on the surface ‘seem’ to be without movement, we have lots going on behind the scenes that will no doubt eventually lead to some pretty amazing transitions.  In other words, the inspirations you have set in motion will one day manifest happy occurrences right in front of you, on the surface, giving you proof positive that it was worth the ‘risk of failure’ all along!!

What inspires you? Can you think of something you are willing try in order to bring some well-deserved happiness to you?

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26 thoughts on “Saturday Serenity: Inspiration

  1. Brett says:

    Hi, Cher, nice reflections on inspiration. I like the analogy about the frozen lake and unseen activity beneath the surface. Lovely photo as well!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Hi Brett, thank you so much for your thoughtful words! As always, muchly appreciated! Cher xo

      Like

  2. I like your way, as you are thinking Cher, so very thoughtful 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Erika Kind says:

    I love that so very much, Cher! This is exactly the attitude I developed about 8 years ago! I can only agree. Only staying in your comfort zone because it keeps you from unknown experiences will never bring you the experiences you dream about! You need to take that step over the border and check out that immense potential waiting outside. Yes, we may stumble but it will provoke us to take a step over that hurdle in front of us in order to see again further and explore more possibilities. Did I say that I love your post?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Ah, bless! Thank you, Erika! Your words are exactly how I feel too! We need to grab hold of our inspirations and pursue our dreams! And just do it!!! 🙂 🙂 Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Erika Kind says:

        Exactly, we mustn’t limit ourselves by fears of what could be. What could be should actually be the cause of excitement and motivation!💖

        Liked by 1 person

      2. seaangel4444 says:

        That is how I feel too, Erika!! Cher xo

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I love this! You’ve inspired me to take action with a project I’ve been holding back on because of fear. Thank you. 😍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      My deat, you have literally made my day! Thank you so much for your thoughtful words! They inspire me to keep writing!! Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

  5. seaangel4444 says:

    I meant, “dear”! LOL

    Like

  6. floridaborne says:

    Nice post about positing inspiration.

    The picture has quite a surreal look. That describes the way I feel around this time of year. Everything seems surreal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Why thank my dear! It is a surreal looking picture, isn’t it? Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Helen Jones says:

    Happy New Year to you, Cher! Such a beautiful photo and a lovely post. My year is starting with change, hopefully all for the positive, and I am definitely working on the things that make me happy – it’s been a revelation, really 🙂

    I love this quote by Marianne Williamson: ‘Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. It is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, fabulous, talented? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world… we are meant to shine, as children do.’

    I have it printed out above my desk just to remind me in those times when I lose my shine 🙂 xx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Happy New Year, Helen! Oh, I absolutely LOVE that quote by Marianne Williamson! Talk about profound! Thank you so much! I am so glad your year is starting with change and that you are working on things that make you happy! Brilliant, my dear! Keep it up! Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Helen Jones says:

        Thanks, Cher – wishing you a wonderful year too! xx

        Liked by 1 person

  8. 2e0mca says:

    The important thing for all dreams is to take the first step… I learned to use a camera because I once borrowed my mother’s Brownie. I learned to fly because I walked into the flying school rather than just watching the aeroplanes from the fence. Almost any dream can become reality with a little determination but no dream can flourish without taking that first step! Good post Cher 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Well my dear, thank you so much for your wonderfully insightful words! That first step…………… Ah, that is what we need to do; clearly, you have done this with wonderful results!!! Cher xo

      Like

  9. So many things inspire me. Trips to art galleries, and museums, days out with friends ……ending up at a sculpture park. Walks in the woods, strange looking trees! Watching a film at the cinema, going to an unusual event. All manner of weird, and wonderful things….LOL!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Well I love hearing that, Marje! Wonderful and inspiring things!! Love it! Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Heartafire says:

    Lovely photo! I think sometimes we are lacking motivation to follow through Cher. A human condition.💙

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Most definitely in addition to the fear of failure; these two things can keep us stuck, can’t they? Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Heartafire says:

        very much so ! xo

        Liked by 1 person

  11. I’ve actually really committed myself to creating digital art every day, Cher, it’s sort of taken over my life. I write a bit during the day, I spend quite a bit of time indoors as I’m not terribly mobile, but since I got my tablet and rocketed into the future, I sit every evening creating digital art on the tablet. I can’t not do it now which is really interesting as, up until I was 50, I never saw myself as an artist. I have also taken the plunge and begun a series of talks on video about my ideas on the future of the world (I mean, don’t let’s play small, eh, only the future of the world I’m talking about, ha-ha), but it took a deep breath and a sense of jumping off the cliff to start talking to the webcam, but I’m enjoying it now I’ve faced the fear. Bit belated, been mugged by a nasty virus doing the rounds in North Cyprus, so Happy New Year to you, may you be blessed with hope, love and bucketloads of glitter, of course! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Well a huge, “Happy New Year” to you, dear Mo! I must say I am extremely proud of you for making such incredible strides in following your passion for art! Well done, my dear! As for the virus, I do hope you are well on the mend! I’m send you lots of healing, positive energy, hope, love, and also sending those bucketloads of glitter! After all, there can never be enough magical glitter, can there, Mo? Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

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