Inspiration: Breathing Fresh Opportunity
Here’s an experiment for you to try: As you listen to or watch the news, I want you take note of how many positive topics are discussed relative to the number of negative topics. Then ask yourself how you would describe the mood or attitude of all those who are mentioned in the news?
Whether you get you news information from the internet outlets or from cable or network sources, by and large the subjects are negative, the topics are negative, the response most folks have is more depressing than uplifting. There are the gratuitous “feel-good” stories bolted on to the end of the newscast, much as a fuzzy wheel cover is snapped onto a steering wheel, but neither changes the character of the basic vehicle, be it a newscast or an automobile. That 5% happy story hardly balances the 95% that was negative, sad, tragic, terrifying, and certainly not inspiring. With streaming news feeds, the majority of the information coming into our minds is harsh, criminal, insulting and not a good use of our time.
Personally, I think one of the best ways to make a significant change in your life and your outlook is to turn off the streaming news and turn a deaf ear to all the negativity that surrounds us on the airwaves and in print. How can we be positive and encouraged when we allow our minds to be filled with the negative, sad, and discouraging talk of life?
One mark of an entrepreneur is his or her overwhelmingly positive outlook on opportunity. One of the main reasons I enjoy spending time with entrepreneurs is their positive, exuberant spirit. They seem to be running in a different direction than most of the world.
If I asked you to give me one word that summarizes your take on the world, what would you give me? I promise you that the entrepreneur would have a positive outlook. You can’t start a new business or be creative or successful with a discouraged attitude towards life. Yeah, sure, life is difficult. For all of us. But it’s also filled with wonder and discovery and beauty and opportunity.
One thing I love about children is their energetic curiosity. They are filled with wonder at a butterfly or lightning bug. Their simple naivete filters out the negative news. They are captured with the glorious moment of being alive and discovering a new bug, a new friend, a new experience. Their world is not defined or influenced by what the news reporter told them about their world.
One word I would use to describe that childlike zeal for life is “inspiration”. They are inspired to be alive, to explore, to ask questions, to learn, to discover. And THAT is my objective for you. If I can help you recapture that childlike curiosity and wonder of discovery – that hunger to learn and walk through the dawning of opportunity, then I can help you to awaken the potential you have within you.
A great aspirational quotation is, “All things are possible to those who believe”. I often quote it to myself. So, what do you believe in? In the negativity of this world? Or the positivity of this life? That everything is getting worse and worse? That there too many obstacles to succeed? Or that you are living in the greatest age of discover and opportunity since man stood up on his hind legs?
Inspiration means to breathe in. It refers to a sudden, brilliant or timely idea. It is an urge and an ability to do or feel something. If I can inspire you, I can breathe new ideas and opportunities into you. I want you to stop breathing in the musty stale air of discouragement. I want to open up the windows of your mind and soul and let the fresh, stimulating air of positive, healthy thoughts and invigorating dreams fill your lungs and move you to action to seize the opportunities in your world.
That’s what entrepreneurs are. They shut out the cold dank air of negativity and breathe in from another source. They don’t breathe in from the same air tank all the rest of the world breathes from.
So, let me give you just a few brief thoughts here on how to open up the “windows of your soul”.
1. Turn off the negative and depressing inputs to your life. You are powerless to impact 100% of the news you hear. You can’t fight or prevent a war, you can’t make nations or leaders behave, you can’t make congressmen/women act civil, you aren’t running for presidential office – thank God for that – and the elections will not be held until next November. You can’t fight the fires in Australia, you can’t take down the bad guys who are acting like fools, and you can’t undo the tragic accident you saw in the news. So, stop filling your mind and overloading your senses with information you have no power over. That only makes you feel impotent and that discourages you inside. Shame on news networks for filling our airwaves with all the negative, and shame on us for letting it influence us negatively.
2. Begin inputting positive messages. Good books or recordings can be a great substitute for news and talk radio on your commute to work and back each day. Any book is good, but I recommend really inspiring non-fiction and motivational books. If you Google motivational books and speeches, you will discover thousands. Pick one and start.
3. Don’t engage in the social media wars or the uncivil discussions with peers and co-workers, or anyone else. A bad apple can taint the whole basket of good apples, and one strident and stubborn and mean-spirited person can rouse the spirit of strife and negativity in a whole group. Avoid the negativity creeps.
4. Dream. Good healthy day-dreaming is so important – dreams of what could be, should be in your life time. Everything we have in life first began with a dreamer. A man without a dream is a walking corpse. A man with a dream is potential waiting to happen. A positive day-dreamer is a life-changer looking for opportunity.
I hope and pray that you will receive the breath of the positive in life …. that it will inspire you to great effort and great success.