ON INSPIRATION AND THE DIFFERENCE IT MAY MAKE


There is a general observation that people of this generation are either too abstract or too scientific. People who are boxed on the latter category insist that everything in the world can be explained by science.

To them, this can be said: try explaining your love to your beloved by the rules of physics or chemistry, and you can get a negative 12 cold reception. Or worse, consider your love as a mixture in chemistry, and you will consider each other as toxic waste. To the former belong the abstract people of this generation.

The proliferation of networking sites and their corresponding discussion boards can easily give us this perception. Just recently, the rise of the jejemon culture intensifies this belief. People are on the extremes? People are in search of identity.

Frankly, I have a different reading of the situation. People of this generation are people who are full of concepts. This I call the ‘generation of conceptualization’. And many of them we can find in our workplaces. This needs closer examination, with our office procedures and models patterned after the Industrial Age. It is true that people of this age are equipped with science and hard skills, but I believe that what they need is INSPIRATION.

Just what is inspiration?

The word INSPIRE is from the word SPIRIT (spiritus in Latin) meaning breath, which was further taken from the verb ‘to breathe’ (spirare). Through the ages, it has also become synonymous with the word for soul. In other words, inspiration touches the very core of the human person. You know it. You feel it. You are aware it is there but you cannot just say exactly what it is.

The question is, is it possible to be inspired? My humble answer is NO, unless you actively look for it. What follows are some simple suggestions on how to ‘actively’ look for inspiration:

1. Get inspiration first thing in the morning
Actively seek for inspiration upon waking up. Spend quiet time. Pray and be still. Actively seek happy sights early in the morning. I can almost see that when we are late for work and begin to rush in the morning, our day would be ruined. Absence of inspiration in the morning means stagnation and regression of the whole day.

2. Stay close to inspiring people
It is a reality that there are people who inspire us. And there are people who make us perspire that we would soon wish that we would expire. This may be your boss, your colleague, your neighbor. But there are some people who are upbeat and positive. They believe in your potential. Associate with them. They will let you aspire because they inspire.

3. Read a good book. Listen to inspiring CDs. Watch a good movie.
Read Paulo Coehllo. Watch Invictus, the Blind Side, Land Before Time, Pursuit of Happyness. A lot of them are available. Listen to undying classics. Try Kenny Garrett with his sax. In the same way that we have to relax our minds, we have to feed them. Listen to life-giving talks. Attend inspirational seminars, featuring inspirational speakers.

4. Listen to inspirational music
These are not raps and hard rock or metal rocks. These inspirational music are usually religious songs. There is just something in them that just sooths the soul and penetrates the heart. Look for your inspirational music and play it often.

5. Inspire and serve others
Always inspire others by serving them. Always think of others as better than yourself. This is not self-pity. This is edifying humility.

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