By Rebecca Golgoski, MBA, Marketing Manager, Natural Wellness
“I stop looking for my purpose and instead commit to releasing all that blocks me from feeling inspired. My inspiration reconnects me with my purpose.” – Gabrielle Bernstein, motivational speaker, author of Add More ~ing to Your Life, Spirit Junkie and May Cause Miracles.
Have you been racking your brain for what seems like forever with some of these BIG questions: Should I make a career change? If I go the entrepreneurial route, how in the world will I fund it? What’s the best way to prepare for retirement? When will I find the love of my life and start a family? What goals are most important to me? Who am I meant to become?
Lingering questions without answers can weigh heavily on one’s shoulders. We want to prosper, excel and do better – but how?
Many times, answers to important – and difficult – questions do not come to us overnight, wrapped in a pretty bow beside our pillow when we wake. Learning about our own intricacies and finding the solutions to our life’s purpose takes time and energy. Rather than apply pressure and seek answers, we must first free our body and mind, and spend time doing things that inspire us.
According to www.choosing-life-my-way.com, inspiration is “an experience of feeling your soul lifted above the cares and concerns of everyday life. Inspiration is being in a state of mind where everything is possible, everything is clear, and we feel at one with the universe.”
To help you on your way to becoming a better you, here are 10 ways to clear your head, free your body, and get inspired:
- Arts and Crafts – There are so many possibilities when it comes to arts and crafts, such as experimenting with watercolor, acrylics, oils, crayons, charcoal, knitting, scrapbooking, silk screening, pottery, papermaking, and more. You can use a pencil, a brush or even your bare hands. You can draw outside surrounded by nature and beautiful sceneries, build sandcastles on a beach, or immerse yourself in knitting a scarf while traveling, as well as from the comfort of your favorite chair at home. Art has no bounds. It’s yours to do with what you please and wherever you choose.
- Cooking – Do the scents of spices and aromas of soups, meats and sweet sauces fill your nose and calm your body? The act of cooking can free your mind, and the food can help bring family and friends to the table where conversations, memories and new ideas are built.
- Dancing – The expressive art of dance can help you free your soul. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the popular dance movie from the 1980s, Footloose, let me share with you a turning point in the movie. To help fight for a school dance in his community, Ren, a high school student himself, appeals to the town council with notes he reads from the Bible. He says, “From the oldest of times, people danced for a number of reasons. They danced in prayer… or so that their crops would be plentiful… or so their hunt would be good. And they danced to stay physically fit… and show their community spirit. And they danced to celebrate.”
- Exercising – I have always been active. Engaging in sports during my younger years gave me purpose, as well as positive friendships. Time passed after high school, and after college, and I felt like I was missing something but I wasn’t sure what. About 10 months ago I started jogging, eating better and doing strength training. After losing some weight and gaining motivation, I entered my first 5K. I had never felt so alive in my life! Not only does the exercise help clear my head (my primary focus is keeping my breathing steady), but ideas for work and personal life pop into my head as I trot along. I have also built my confidence by conquering this form of exercise by trying it competitively. I always used to say, “Oh, I’m not a good runner. I can’t do a 5K.” But I can, and I did. I have since entered four more races, with one of them being a 10K, soon to come. I’m not running to win the race; I’m running to gain joy in doing what was once the impossible, because my mind has been liberated from preconceived notions. In addition to jogging, you can also try hiking, biking, swimming, or whichever activity best suits your physical abilities.
- Friendships – Try new activities with current friends or make plans to hang out with new people who enter your life. The happiness and delight formed with other people will help you rise above the concerns of everyday life.
- Gardening – Connecting with nature is one of the best ways to feel at one with the world, with the universe, so get out those gardening tools and plant some vegetables or pretty, colorful flowers.
- Meditation – “Meditation is a practice in which an individual trains the mind or induces a mode of consciousness, either to realize some benefit or as an end in itself.” Try meditating in a quiet space or with gentle music in the background. Block out the extremities, breathe deeply and with purpose, concentrate on the noises that surround you – and just be.
- Music – Listen to some tunes while you’re driving in the car, crank the radio up while you are cleaning the house, put some headphones on while you’re outside hiking, or take time out to hear live music at a park or local restaurant. Like the Doobie Brothers croon, “Give me the beat boys to free my soul, I wanna get lost in your rock ‘n roll and drift away.”
- Reading – During summer breaks from high school, I could easily spend hours each day lounging outside reading a book. My mind was at peace those years without a care in the world. With the advent of working and the responsibilities of home life, I lost touch with my happiness in reading. However, I recently got rid of cable. Instead of watching TV at night, my new routine is reading for an hour before turning the lights off. My mind clears as I become one with the characters in the books, I sleep better and wake more rested.
- Writing – Poetry, stories, fiction, non-fiction, journaling. Try one or try them all! You never know what thoughts can start flowing, what ideas can materialize.
If you feel stuck in one or multiple areas in your life, and just can’t figure things out, don’t worry. Let go of these pressures and find activities that inspire you. As the singers of En Vogue have belted out, “Free your mind, and the rest will follow.”