I’m very excited to again this week join a talented group of women who connect each Friday in an online, unedited flash mob free write based on a one-word prompt from our fearless leader Kate Motaung. My timer is set for 5 minutes; let’s see where the word “inspire” takes me.
It’s interesting, the variety of things and people that serve as an inspiration. Pieces of art, music, the world around us, poetry, problems or challenges . . . the list is almost endless.
It can be argued that most people know what inspires them. In fact, many people acknowledge that they have “go to” things or activities they rely on when they need a creative spark.
Words . . . those already recorded on the pages of books and my own, written in journals . . . have always inspired me.
As a child, books created in me a desire to travel, to become a teacher, and to do a variety of things forgotten with time. More recently, recorded words have inspired me to attend conferences, long to journey Route 66 in a vintage red convertible, and endeavor to write a book. They have driven me to embark on a more healthy eating plan and to exercise 6 days a week, to visit Alaska, to search for hours for an affordable class B+ or class C camper in which I can travel throughout the United States.
I’ve found in the past few years another, new-to-me sources of inspiration. Although I’m a minimalist and have never had any issues with weight, televisions shows like Hoarders and My 600-pound Life motivate me. Those brief, 30-minute or so glimpses into a person’s struggle to battle their own eating habits or their compulsion to collect stuff sparks in me a desire to accomplish something. Oh, not to exercise or lose weight or even to clean out a closet. But to do something with my life.
More morbidly, perhaps, is the motivation to accomplish something I receive from the obituaries in my local newspaper. My eye flies down the on-line page, honing in on the age of the recently-departed. If they are much older, my body relaxes with the subtle reassurance that a long life is often a reality. And I’m inspired to do something with those years ahead of me. When I see a number near my own age or even, tragically, lower — even much lower, I’m gripped with an urgency to do something now.
Inspiration . . .