Inspiration has been an ongoing topic of discussion in my house lately. My husband and I are both very drawn to things that spark inspiration – I would guess everyone is drawn to those things as well, but I wonder if everyone stops to appreciate these little sparks. I would bet that in a world of fast everything – food, fashion, technology – that it’s getting harder and harder to not only recognize the sparks but also to appreciate them when they are recognized.
We’ve had an unexpectedly slow December with my husband being laid off in the first week of this month. It’s a big blow for sure, and if we allowed ourselves to sink into worry and stress it would make this month horrendous. I mean it’s the busiest and most expensive month of the year and here we are wondering how we’ll be able to pay the bills and buy the groceries let alone fill the bottom of the tree with presents. We could definitely dwell on the negatives but that would only make it worse. Instead our conversations and focus has been on our future, our goals and our dreams. Somehow, though there are moments of stress, we’ve been able to stay positive and truly enjoy each day.
I’ve been thinking about this today. I wonder what it is that we are doing that makes this time less stressful than I feel it should be, and I think it lies in our desire to fill our lives only with things that encourage and inspire us. There are a few specific things that we have been doing, some of them for a while and others we are just starting to do.
A big place of inspiration for both of us is our home and how we fill it. When you come to our house the first thing you would probably notice is the plants. I’ve lost count at how many plants we now have, but it’s well over 50 and will continue to grow. Plants inspire us to live closer to nature and to live simpler lives. I’ve recently taken time to fill our office with inspirational art, things to remind us where we want to go and what it takes to get there. We don’t fill our home with clutter but think carefully about each and everything we bring into it.
We both take time to listen, read, or watch things each day that inspire us to do better and be better. My husband searches through Pinterest, reads things he finds on Facebook, and watches shows or documentaries that inspire him to overcome obstacles. I belong to a bookclub dedicated to self development. We read 10 pages per day and use an app called Marco Polo to discuss the book. I also read my Bible daily and make sure I’m spending time in prayer.
Something else we are both passionate about: sparking inspiration in others and I think this goes a long long way when it comes to having a positive outlook on life. If you know me, you know I love Instagram. It’s been a love of mine for almost as long as it’s been around. Over the years my use of the app has changed and now I mostly use it as an online journal. Each thing I post will more than likely have a twist of positivity because I feel strongly about building people up and letting go of negativity. If I can’t post something positive I probably won’t post that day. My husband is the same way with Facebook, he only shares what he feels will encourage others. You can also listen to him on the phone daily, talking to his friends and speaking words of life and encouragement.
I’m beginning to see the absolute importance of inspiration in our lives, and I truly think it’s the key to why we can stay positive in a stressful time.
What’s your daily inspiration?