Everyone has heard of the infamous "writer's block." Nearly every pursuit in life has a similar point in time when nothing seems to work and giving up seems to be the best idea.
We all have those times in our lives when it's difficult to make the progress we need to make, whether we are trying to improve our own lot in life, finish that Oscar-winning script bouncing around in our head, take a couple strokes off our impossibly poor golf game or master a new skill. Thankfully, we can lean on those sage words of the great minds of the ages to move us forward, giving us the inspirational words
we so desperately need.
Thomas A. Edison
really said it all when he offered this famous inspirational quote: "Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration."
Some of the best things in life came out of seeming failure. After all, old Thomas didn't create the light bulb on his first or even one hundredth try. But I think we'd all agree that it's a darned good thing that he never, ever gave up on the idea.
Inspiration is a funny thing. It can strike us in the middle of a shower or as we go for a little walk to clear our head. Many creative types keep a notebook by the bed for those middle of the night strokes of genius. Inspiration doesn't always knock you upside the head. Sometimes you have to go looking for inspirational moments, or even ask for it. As Jack London
once said, "You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club."
We all like to think that others are far smarter than we, that Edison
were born to do great things. But as William Feather
once observed: "Here is the secret of inspiration: Tell yourself that thousands and tens of thousands of people, not very intelligent and certainly no more intelligent than the rest of us, have mastered problems as difficult as those that now baffle you."
Ironically, some of the best inspiration comes from those closest to us, who can serve as guideposts. As Brad Henry
once said, "Families are the compass that guide us. They are the inspiration to reach great heights, and our comfort when we occasionally falter."
While a good support system is helpful, inspiration comes most readily when you believe in yourself and your ideas. You have to get up in every morning, living and breathing your idea. As Lee Iacocca
once said, "Motivation is everything. You can do the work of two people, but you can't be two people. Instead, you have to inspire the next guy down the line and get him to inspire his people."
Whether you're an artist, writer, entrepreneur or inventor, one of the best ways to become inspired is to fertilize your ideas with the input of others. Don't be afraid to let others embrace your idea, and even build upon it. Let your passion become theirs. Share the workload and the glory. When you do, you'll find that your product, service, invention or creation is even better than you ever imagined because others have shared their own sweat in its creation, bringing new ideas and new solutions to the table.
That is, after all, the path to true greatness, being inspirational to others as well as inspired yourself. William Ward
once said it all. "The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires."
Inspire yourself and others and you will achieve the greatness in life you so richly deserve.