(Stillness in the Storm Editor) Inspiration is the food of the soul.
When we feel inspired, we want for nothing—we feel totally fulfilled, satisfied and happy.
When we are inspired, the mind, body and soul become one dynamic breathing thing, the vehicle for consciousness to undergo profound spiritual change and evolution.
When we are not inspired, life feels boring, meaningless and empty—all qualities of wanting. When we want for things, it is a state of being which says “I am not complete, I am not whole,” causing us to reach for things outside of us to fill the void.
But trying to feed the soul with materialistic distractions (like food, sex, and drugs—to name a few) leaves us wanting for more. And distractions of all kinds, whether beneficial or deleterious, always have the effect of decreasing inspiration because our focus and attention is not centered properly in the now. If one has ever been depressed, bored, or under-stimulated, these things provide temporary comfort but the hole in one’s soul is never truly filled.
Therefore, dissatisfaction of any kind—whether physical, emotional, or spiritual—can never be truly corrected by external things. Dissatisfaction, in this sense, is a hunger pang of the soul.
Dharma is a Vedic term referring to the principle of cosmic order and how each individual came to this world with an all-encompassing and cosmically important life purpose.
You came to this world for a very specific reason, to embody and become an agent of change. Everything you experience, think, and do is enfolded into this grand purpose, which we could call fate or destiny. And yet due to the primacy of free will, we can delay our fate—lifetime after lifetime—and in the process cause ourselves unspeakable pain, suffering, and confusion. But when we act or take steps towards our true life purpose, inspiration fills the evolving soul and we gain the surety of knowing where we are going and how we will get there.
In other words, inspiration is a signpost on the road to spiritual awakening and a realization of our true potential.
Whatever inspires you, no matter how seemingly unspiritual, random or perverse, is a step on the path towards greater self-realization. And as we make forward progress, the things that inspired us in the past transform to become grander expressions of our unique soul purpose. As such, always strive for self-discovery, and when faced with the choice to grow or maintain old habits, find the courage to let the old pass away so the new can take its place.
Inspiration and novelty or newness are intimately connected. The soul craves new experiences but most importantly new perspectives and ideas. Therefore do not let the mind become rigid of thought else the soul will stagnate.
An inspired life is transformative. If we were to truly make each step in an inspired way, who we are now would be unrecognizable to who we will become in the future. And we can experience profound personal changes very quickly, healing the body, mind and soul of all their afflictions.
So do not fear change, love it, for it cannot be avoided, only embraced.
by Thais Gibson
Research shows that when we are living in alignment with what truly inspires us, we are more likely to be productive, fulfilled, driven, intelligent, and creative. In other words, we are most likely to succeed.
And when you really think about it, what is success anyways? Society might define success in terms of money and possessions, but does any of that matter if you aren’t truly fulfilled? True success is something that should instead be associated with the level of fulfillment being experienced by each individual in their personal and professional lives.
Here is some information about what happens to your brain and body when you are pursuing what does or does not inspire you.
Behavioral development expert Dr. John DeMartini recently discovered that we all have a unique set of values that plays a major role in governing our behavior and perception of self. He concluded that all of our positive and negative emotions are a feedback system for whether we are living in or out of our values system. Our values are the things that truly matter to us in life.’
DeMartini determined that when we are living out of alignment with our values, we are more likely to manifestb addictive behaviour, self-sabotage, and procrastination in our lives. When we are living within our values, we experience better memory retention, focus, and productivity.
There is also a part of the by brain known as the reticular-activating system that is constantly filtering out information according to our hierarchy of values. Let’s take the example of a husband and wife walking down the street. If the man has a high value on relationships and the woman has a high value on animals, the man will notice the couple holding hands and the woman will notice the person walking a dog.
Our brain is constantly working for our system of values!
Creative magic happens when you’ve created cognitive resonance between the conscious and subconscious mind. This resonance also plays a role in being in flow-state. When you are living out of your values, you are inevitably in cognitive dissonance because your conscious and subconscious mind are out of alignment.
Creativity plays a huge role in success. It is responsible for sparking new ideas, inventions, and determining innovative solutions to problems. It allows us to think beyond traditional boundaries and pioneer new territory.
Dr. Kahn at the University of Arizona (2012) found that we are more likely to be creative when we have an open mind and are experiencing a positive mood. By pursuing what inspires us, we are more likely to experience both of these things.
Inspiration vs. Desperation
Dr. DeMartini also discusses the two main forces motivating people in his seminar The Breakthrough Experience. He says we are continuously motivated by either inspiration or desperation.
The source of desperation is fear-based thinking, and individuals motivated by desperation are in a constant state of seeking pleasure over pain. They are more likely to be on an emotional roller-coaster and to give up in the face of challenge.
The sources of inspiration are love and authenticity. From a place of inspiration, “we are more likely to embrace both pain and pleasure in the pursuit of our purpose.” (Dr. DeMartini) We see the bigger picture, and are better able to overcome obstacles in the pursuit of our vision.
Approach-Oriented vs. Avoidant Behavior
When we are truly inspired by the pursuit of our goals, our perception changes. We are less likely to see setbacks as failures because we are too busy seeing them as opportunities for growth. This plays an important role in removing limiting beliefs that are programmed in the subconscious mind.
In addition to this, a laboratory study conducted by researchers Schnelle, Brandstatter, and Knopfel (2010) showed that participants were more likely to exhibit approach-oriented behavior over avoidance techniques when they were participating in a task that they were inspired by.
In other words, we are more likely to tackle circumstances head-on when we are interested in what we are doing. We are also more likely to replace fear of the unknown with curiosity, enabling our learning process and advancement.
Our mind and body are extremely interconnected. When we are taking part in activities or learning that we believe supports our values, our brains produce higher levels of serotonin and dopamine. These neurochemicals are more concentrated in our brain and physiology when we are taking part in inspired action. Dopamine is the neurotransmitter involved in movement, memory, pleasurable reward, and motivation. Serotonin is involved in well-being, appetite regulation, and the transmission of nerve impulse.
When we are involved in activities or work that we perceive as a threat to our values, we produce higher levels of cortisol and substance P. Substance P is the biochemical involved in the transmission of pain information, while cortisol is most commonly known as the neurochemical related to stress.
Over time, we are either energized or depleted by the types of neurochemicals being produced in our brain and transmitted throughout our body.
When you are aligned and authentic, your self-worth naturally increases because you have accepted your uniqueness and the things that you value. You are more likely to believe in yourself, be calm under pressure, and share your opinion when you are aligned.
When you are living out of your values, you are communicating to your subconscious that you are unworthy of owning who you are. The negative feelings that accompany low self-worth are simply feedback for you, telling you to stop disowning what’s important to you.
Personal fulfillment is largely associated with our ability to set and achieve intrinsic goals. And if you can’t be fulfilled, does meeting societal standards of success really matter anyway?
Remember: Change Doesn’t Necessarily Happen Overnight
Remember that establishing effective change takes time. Despite how much the information above might resonate with you, creating a smooth transition takes consistency, patience, and perseverance. Proper action steps are also required to bring your dreams to life.
- Define your goals! If money was of no value, what would you spend the rest of your life doing? You can always find a way to monetize your dreams when you are living authentically.
- Do your research and make a plan. What steps do you need to take? How much money do you need to save? How much extra time do you need to put into this each week? If it truly matters to you, you will go for it, and you will experience the rewards accordingly. Creating a timeline is also beneficial.
- Tie your current job into your values. Rather than creating resistance towards what is currently supporting you, work to see how it is benefitting your long-term plan. By shifting your perception and seeing the benefits in your current job, you minimize resistance and will have more energy, resources, and productivity to move effectively towards your goals.
Perhaps you have to put an extra ten hours of work into each week to manifest your desires. But doing your life’s work will provide you with more meaning and substance in your life. Taking action steps towards creating a life by design will energize, not deplete you.
In the words of Maya Angelou, don’t forget that sometimes you have to “do what you have to until you can do what you want to!”
Hi! Thank you for taking the time to read my articles. My name is Thais and I work as a personal development specialist, specializing in transforming belief systems to balance perceptions around trauma (both conscious and subconscious). My line of work also involves helping individuals find their purpose, manifest their goals, and correct negative thought patterns through developed self-awareness. I love connecting with people from all different walks of life. And, as someone who has been through many challenges myself, I believe that within even the darkest of moments is a beautiful opportunity for transformation and growth. I absolutely love teaching, sharing, and learning, so please feel free to reach out at any time at [email protected]
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