To start this new category on my blog, and as my first entry after two years of travelling, I want to write about inspiration itself. What inspires us? This is not only about travelling. Inspiration can come in many shapes. No matter if it’s inspiration to paint, to write, to play music.
Think about your favorite hobby. What inspired you the first time to try it? What was the spark that made your inner fire grow and burn as brightly as it is today?
In order to find out we have to think about our own past. Of course we all change over the years as we grow older, but there are some things that last. Once we caught fire for something, our passion for it won’t fade so easily.
But sometimes the triggers are hidden. We have to search for them in ourselves.
When I think back of what was the initial source of inspiration that led to my wanderlust today, the first thing that may come into my mind might be watching too many Indiana Jones movies and documentaries about travelling. But as soon as I have a closer look these thoughts disappear. Instead, I begin to remember the time when I was just a few years old. My mum sang me to sleep with old shanties of distant countries. My dad told me stories of adventurers who explored the amazon jungle, volcanoes and caves. In those times a small spark started glowing in my heart. It grew and developed over the years and formed a character trade which made me to who I am today.
But what about the present. Almost every one of us has made experiences with stress already. Sometimes there might even occur a feeling of being burned out, which can be overwhelming. Our everyday lives, school, university, work, the schedule we have to fit in, lie like a thick blanket of worries above us. Sometimes we are able to escape, to run away, sometimes we aren’t. But the important thing is, not to allow stress to affect who we really are. Superficial influences should never change our views of life or make us close our eyes for the things which motivate and inspire us.
Motivation is strongly connected to inspiration. If we wake up with a smile on our face, see obstacles as challenges and possibilities to grow, life feels a lot easier. Seeing things from this point of view, allows us to find inspiration even in our everyday lives. Why not leaving for work or school a little earlier and walk there instead of taking the bus. That would give us the opportunity to recognize all the beautiful things that surround us every day. Let’s learn to see them again! Let’s watch butterflies circling above a blossoming flower. Let’s watch the birds, flying high up in the sky. And let’s smile at them. Let’s smile at everything we see and touch and all of a sudden the world will smile back, I promise. Let’s smile at strangers, even talk to them, ask them about their days, of what makes them feel alive. Let’s learn from your friends, not by having just standard small talk conversations, but talks about stars, their dreams and life itself.
Let’s open up our minds and try new things. And we will see, even though life might be busy with work or school all day, things will start to feel exciting and be inspiring again. It will feel like a trip back to our childhood when everything was thrilling. Motivation is something we can learn, and once we’ve learned how to motivate ourselves, we will stay that way.
Right now, I’m sitting on a rock next to the sea on the island of Pag, Croatia. As I look over the upper edge of my notebook, I see the ocean. That’s it. There’s a huge area covered by blue water in front of me kissing a distant horizon. If I wouldn’t know that there’s a shore on the other side, I would think that the ocean extends until infinity. Infinity. Something a human brain will never be able to imagine. Too huge and overwhelming it is. But we aren’t made to imagine what infinity is. Yet, we should try to think about what it could mean to us.
When we look at the stars at night, we actually look at millions of galaxies and planets, distant suns and nebulas, quasars, things so unbelievable that even scientists are continuously surprised by new discoveries which they never thought would be possible, be it by restrictions in physical or mathematical laws, or the ability of imaging them.
But all those alleged impossibilities are there, and they are right above our heads. The universe we live in holds an (possibly) infinite amount of impossibilities. Of planets which could be similar to our earth, even of other life forms. Isn’t it inspiring that such a complexity exists? Looking at the stars, to me, is a proof that anything is possible. And because energy can never be destroyed or created, it’s a matter of fact that life on earth, you, I, everyone we know and everything we have ever seen and touched came from places, so far away that even measuring it in light years leads to a ridiculously large number of years we’d have to travel at the speed of light to get there. We are a wonder, every one of us. And like the universe, we also contain all those possibilities. Therefore life itself should be our biggest source of inspiration!
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Xoxo Inga 🙂