Ugh ugh ugh. 10 days late? I’m not exactly sure why publishing a post every day (or even remotely frequently) has been such a challenge for me, but I guess that’s what happens when you just DON’T SLEEP EVER and get swamped at work. Again, I’ve totally been writing every day, my bosses just crush me with work immediately after I finish a post and I don’t have time to edit. Excuses, excuses.
So, sometimes I mistake motivation for inspiration. As an artist, I rely on inspiration to drive the work I’m passionate about. I use motivation to do work I’m not passionate about. When I don’t feel like doing my job administrative audit work, that’s lack of motivation. When I can’t write, that’s lack of inspiration. Yet, here I sit at work, groaning over Excel spreadsheets, planning to watch some sort of ballet variation or music video on YouTube because, as I tell myself, “I’m feeling uninspired.”
As we get older and gain responsibility, we tend to focus more on what we have to do and neglect what we want to do. Sure, we have our obligations, like going to work every morning, paying our bills, and taking care of whomever might depend on us (thankfully for me that’s just myself). More often than not, I’ll hear people say, “I have no motivation to ______.” But should we really spend our lives searching only for motivation, to find that little spark of physical energy within ourselves that will push us to do what we need to do? Why can’t we spend the majority of our time searching for inspiration that allows us to do what we want to do? Becoming self-sufficient is great and all, but we can’t lose ourselves in the necessities. I was constantly inspired in school, when my work consisted of reading novels and writing my own essays, poems, and fiction. In high school, I was even more inspired daily when I spent numerous hours at Boston Ballet. I was always peeking into the higher level classes to watch more advanced dancers, and when I was lucky enough to dance in a professional ballet, I studied the company dancers as much as possible in rehearsal and from the wings. But today, I spend my days around accountants, who are awesome, but I cannot, for the life of me, become inspired here. It is my opinion that inspiration should be as much a part of life as coffee and oxygen, and currently I’m working on finding mine again. Here’s my list of what has always inspired me:
1. My mom
Her job title is Administrative Coordinator, but as a mom she’s a chef, an interior designer, accountant, stylist, and professional landscaper. I seriously don’t know how she does everything she does while working 40 hours a week. She also loves me more than anyone in the world ever has, except maybe my dad, and I’m in awe at how she is able to show me that every day.
2. My dad
My mom is a realist, but my dad is a dreamer. He has had his dream job for decades, and never stops talking about his passions (Ted Williams, photography, possible no-hitters). When I experience rare moments when I think, anything is possible, it’s because of him.
I can’t not rush to my laptop to work on my novel while I’m reading a good book. If I hadn’t read so many amazing books, I wouldn’t be able to write anything. Though she only has a few published works, Jhumpa Lahiri is one of the authors that inspires me the most. And quantum theory lit (bet you didn’t know that was a thing) novels are incredible. Paul Auster is a fantastic author, and I’m incredibly inspired by his writing’s ability to cater to its readers.
4. Talented dancers
Again, I’m a writer, so I possess the skill of expressing almost anything through writing, but I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to describe the way I felt when I danced. I can, however, always tell when a dancer feels that way, because, to me at least, it’s visible in her dancing. I mean, let’s be real: Maddie Ziegler is one of the most inspiring dancers I’ve ever seen — and she’s eleven! If she had been famous when I was a young , aspiring dancer, I probably would have watched YouTube videos of her every day and improved because of it. And of course, any good ballet variation (these two are my favorites: 1. 2.) leaves me feeling like the world is a bit more beautiful.
I’m getting mushy. I should probably stop now.
Here’s hoping you all have some inspiration in your lives!