We live in the age of inspiration overload. From travel and lifestyle shots on Instagram, DIY ideas for just about any project you can dream up, and immediate accessibility to a knowledge pool that’s required to master new hobby, it’s hard to come up with an excuse not to do something.
The problem with inspiration overload is that for the indecisive and unintentional, inspiration (and the consumption of it) can quickly boil down to nothing more than another task.
Rather than wading through endless options to find one with a meaning that resonates at a deep level, we often pick the first that will do the job, fill the feed, or make a statement to someone.
Rather than gathering pieces of inspiration from many sources that we can combine to make something truly unique, that has a purpose, we latch onto the first idea that sounds good. Then we run hard with it, often failing to look back and evaluate whether or not we ran with the right thing.
Showing signs of being inspired and living an inspired life has become trendy. Those without a social presence ripe with incredible images and profound sayings are among those still stuck in a former world. We tend to perceive them as “out of touch,” “outdated,” “boring,” and, let’s be honest, a little “sad.”
But there’s far more to living an inspired life than talking about it on an Instagram story. The most profound and life-changing moments that come from being true to your own intentions and purpose are rarely those that are available for mass consumption.
They are the moments that transition our ways of thinking. They are the realizations that cause us to leave jobs, commit to partners, decide whether or not to have children and make important lifestyle decisions to create a life of purpose that we love to live – forcing us to leave the one we’ve merely fallen into.
Embedding purpose at the center of your life isn’t a one-step process. Tying that purpose into everything you do isn’t either. It starts with a commitment, to be honest with ourselves. To accept that our answers may require that we do something about them – reject a promotion, leave a relationship, step outside of our comfort zones, set a goal we know will be difficult to reach.
But through a series of small decisions, big decisions follow and creating purpose becomes easier to do. We choose to spend time with people that support our purpose. Choosing jobs and hobbies that make us feel connected to our purpose becomes more important. We become better at filtering out content that sounds good and holding onto the stuff that resonates with something deeper. We stop trying to micromanage inspiration and let our purpose weed out what’s become unimportant and irrelevant.
Creating purpose in everything you do starts with a small decision: to be honest with yourself about the purpose you truly want to drive your life, then mustering the courage to let it.
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