5 Star Inspiration and 1 Inspiraction

5 Star Inspiration and 1 Inspiraction

There are six great stimulants for open questions. Rudyard Kipling, in a quaintly old-fashioned British way, called them his six serving men:

I keep six honest serving-men

(They taught me all I knew);

Their names are What and Why and When

And How and Where and Who.

The 5 words beginning with “Wh” offer us a great structure for exploring “inspiration”.

The last one, “How”, offers us a path to what I call, “Inspiraction”.

“Inspiration” is such a great word. Literally, it means to in-spire – to breathe in. In my experience this is the opposite of what happens for me. When I am inspired I usually stop breathing for a moment – something makes me catch my breath. I hold my breath and I lean in to gather more from the source of inspiration. I get the point of the word though!

Add a “c” to inspiration, as if to create the future, and you get “Inspiraction” – which is inspired-action or action-on-inspiration!

Let’s get inspired to inspiraction…

  • What inspires you? This could be a work of art, a quotation, or a song…
  • Who inspires you? Who are the people who give you goosebumps!
  • Where inspires you? Where are the locations that make your heart sing?
  • When inspires you? What events in life, days of the week, or even times of the day inspire you? When are you at your most inspired?
  • Why inspires you? Not great English but a great concept: what’s your “Why” in life – why do you do what you do? Why are you here?

And then “Inspiraction”…

  • How can you deliberately turn on the state of being inspired?

One of the answers sits beneath the above list of “Wh” questions. Sitting below your threshold of consciousness is the very operating system of your mind: association.

By just thinking about your sources of inspiration now, you will tap into the feelings of inspiration associated with those magical moments, what matters and the significant people in your life.

You could, of course, create a physical inspiration board – a set of pictures and other reminders of your sources of inspiration. With a little practice, just looking at this inspiration board will be enough to trigger a heightened sense of readiness to be inspired anew!



It’s Tuesday.

Monday hadn’t gone well. I’d pinched a nerve in my spine and my lower back had locked into a spasm of fear. I walked as if I was crippled – as if I’d had an ‘accident’. ‘Everything’ had gone wrong. Of course, it hadn’t, but it seemed as if it had. Good riddance to Monday, I thought.

Tuesday morning came. I tore a sheet off my 1950’s style calendar, and the comment was, “Time for Decision”. I posted: “Good riddance to Monday,” on Facebook, and a new friend challenged me with the thought that today was ‘Chooseday’.  She asked me, very publically, what I would choose today? I was getting a new message, loud and clear.

What would I choose? Well, I chose to look after my back – I took the pain to be a sign that I wasn’t taking good enough care of myself. I chose to defer a couple of meetings to give my body time to reset and heal…

But then I got to thinking. My whole life was off-track. There was compromise leaking from every pore. Wrong job, wrong partners, wrong location, wrong attitude, wrong choices! How had I let matters slide this far off the path? Answer = my choices. Tiny choice by tiny choice.

So, from now on, my Tuesdays are going to be ‘Chooseday’.

A day for good, purposeful, fresh choices.

What will you choose today?

It's Chooseday

It’s Chooseday

Changing History: War and Peace

How could I start making better choices? Something Wayne Dyer had said years ago had captured my imagination,

“I can choose peace rather than this.”

This is fabulously useful in conflict situations but it goes much deeper into what I call, “The Way of Peace.”

The Apostle Paul believed that the Peace of God could guard our heart and mind. I knew that a step away from peace was a step towards war. My heart and my mind were at war – not with each other but with a Universe that wasn’t working for me. The war had raged for years.

It is time for peace. So, today, I choose decisions that bring me peace – decisions where my heart and mind both say, “Yes!”

A Heart Full of Treasure

My heart has something else to contribute to the process. Jesus said, “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Is it taking too many liberties to suggest that where your heart is, there will your treasure be also? Could it be that what my heart loves points the way to my treasure?

Just imagine, if I could find something I loved and that my heart and my mind were at peace about, surely I would find my treasure, wouldn’t I? Could it be that success lies along the path of peace and the path of that which we love to do?

Regardless of your personal beliefs, there is wisdom in the Biblical principle of establishing every matter through the testimony of two or three witnesses. I wanted a 3rd way to check the quality of my future choices.

Fullness of Joy

When you’re in the right place, when you’re making the right choices, there is a richness of joy. When something isn’t right, you sense it, and you can lose your joy. So here is my third guide to right choices: joy.

I thus have a trinity of guiding principles:

  • Does this choice bring me peace in my heart and my mind?
  • Does pursuing this choice lead me down a path that I would love to follow?
  • Does this choice bring me joy?

Of course, peace, love and joy are three segments of what is called, “The Fruit of the Spirit.” The ultimate test of any right choice is going to be the quality of the fruit it produces. Good choices produce good fruit, worthwhile treasure.

Is it time to plant new choices, new fruit trees?

I know it is for me.