Sarah is a certified Hatha, Vinyasa, & Kundalini yoga teacher. She is an artist who believes in the importance of living a creative life.
Inspiration Takes Place from Within
Oftentimes, people wait around for inspiration to strike. This is futile, for inspiration does not come from the outside, it comes from within. We can become inspired the very moment we decide to be, when we start to recognize our innate creative power and brilliantly allow our inner light to shine forth. When we allow this inner light to shine, everything in front of our eyes becomes illuminated and a source for inspiration.
What does it mean to be inspired?
What is inspiration? The word inspire comes from the Latin inspirare (“to breathe or blow into”), coming from the word spirare, meaning “to breathe.” Breath is life, and when we breath deeply, we infuse our bodies and minds with this animating force. Have you ever taken a moment to look up at the expanse of the sky, and just breath in life? Fully inflating the lungs with breath, and then exhaling completely, letting everything go. Just as we have the ability to breath deeply into our bodies, oxygenating every cell, so too do we have the ability to breath deeply into all parts of our life, nourishing every relationship and facet of life that we experience each day.
Spending Time in Nature
Perhaps the colors of a sun set inspires you, or the way the air feels just after it rains. Nature has been and continues to be a source of inspiration for people throughout time. Famous artist, Vincent Van Gogh, said, "for my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream." The important key here, is that to be inspired by nature, you have to be in nature. It is easy to get so caught up in the hustle of daily like, that we don't notice grandness around us simply waiting for our attention to perceive it. Or, perhaps we don't even go outside at all except to get into our cars only to go back inside of another building. This is where you can begin to use your creativity, to begin to discover the moments where you can be in and observe nature. If inspiration strikes in a second, than there are in fact numerous opportunities in every moment. For example, the next time you get the mail, make it an intention of yours to be mindful and aware as you walk to and from the mailbox. Notice the weather, the feel of the air, any smells or sensations. Can you hear birds or the rumble of trucks as they go by? You may go to your mailbox every day, but have you every really paid attention to everything you see along the way? As you do this, what you are really doing, is practicing conscious awareness. Inspiration is always around us, the key is to stay tuned in enough to be come sensitive and aware of it.
Do Something New or Different Each Day
Every time we have a new experience, we become more alert and engage our senses more fully. When we fall into routines, doing the same tasks in the same way, we lose sight of the beauty in the moment. When you drive the same way to work, or wear the same outfits over and over, you fall into auto-pilot, doing without thinking. Although this can be comforting, it can also be stifling. Doing something as simple as taking a new route to the office can be exciting and refreshing. This is because you will be paying more attention to your surroundings that you normally do. Maybe you notice how the sunlight hits the treetops, or an interesting store that you would like to visit. You can listen to a song you have never heard before, try a new food, or visit a new place. This practice will stimulate different parts of your brain, and have you seeing and thinking in new ways. As Oriah Mountain Dreamer says in her book What We Ache For, "Sometimes it is small unfamiliar things that tweak my awareness and stimulate my imagination."
“Do one thing every day that scares you.”
― Eleanor Roosevelt
Observe and Engage in Creative Expression
Human expression manifests itself in infinite forms. One way to tap into the human experience more deeply and intimately, is through the arts and music. Watching a play in person or listening to a recital can be extremely rewarding. These kinds of activities and experiences reach deep within us, touching the core of what it truly means to be human. How can a dance express an emotion like grief, or a painting evoke a feeling of nostalgia? Observing others as they express themselves and put us more in touch with our own creative nature. We are all connected through our humanity after all. Practice ways in which you can cultivate your own inner creative voice. This may mean writing a poem or story, drawing, painting, or dancing in your living room when no one is home. It is not uncommon to feel resistance before beginning any one of these things. However, once you take the first step and start, you will find that in that moment inspiration will bloom inside you. For it is within you always, and is only a matter of learning how to tap into this life-infusing force so that you can live an illumined life.