Sometimes I need inspiration. I’ve been in a bit of a slump the past few months. I get worn down by the grind of everyday life and I need to recharge.
When this happens, I step back and take a look at the bigger picture. Sometimes we get lost in the details and need a refresher on our purpose and why we do what we do.
When I need a little boost or a reminder of what I should be doing, there are a few things I do:
- Get outside
- Watch inspirational movies
- Find others on the same path
- Remind me of my purpose
I’ll talk about each in brief and hopefully, re-ignite some of the fire in you.
Our lives these days are jam-packed. It can get so as we may feel overwhelmed by all the pressures.
Two tactics that help me are “silence” and “simplification”.
First, the silence. I pray and meditate every morning for maybe 10 minutes. This is followed by about 10 minutes of yoga. To get my body warmed up, I do 20 push-ups, 20 sit-ups, 20 squats. Then I shower and journal (most days).
I fight to keep my electronics off for an hour. This can be tough. Sometimes we get into these things and they become automatic. I may just grab my cell phone out of habit. Try not to do that. We’ll probably be around electronics and technology all day. We can spare an hour (or even more.)
TIP#1: Once you get up, eliminate any “noise”.
Now, to simplify. This part is harder to do, but worth it. It’s all about constant practice and not necessarily a defined goal I find. My purpose is to help motivate, inform and inspire others by sharing my own journey and giving them valuable fitness and nutrition tips that have helped me. Everything else is a distraction that is a waste of my time. Easier said than done, however. I have found that through implementing this strategy, I seem to have more energy and be less stressed (in a bad way).
TIP#1a: Cut the fat from your day. Eliminate useless tasks as much as possible.
I’ll admit that this isn’t always easy. I live in Canada. Most days it’s beautiful outside. Some days in winter, I don’t feel like leaving the house. The ice can be treacherous. That doesn’t change the fact that it is essential, though.
We are of the natural world and should be in nature. This will help alleviate depression as well as give us a good dose of vitamin D.
I live in the suburbs and not really in nature. I do walk a lot and take the bus to and from the gym. It isn’t perfect, but it’s better than staying indoors all day.
TIP#2: Take a walk around the block or around your local park (The more grass and trees, the better!).
For more reasons we should get outside, read 10 Reasons Why Being Outside Is Important
Watch Inspirational Movies
There are lots of great movies about people overcoming adversity. Netflix has a wealth of stellar content. Here are a few of my favourites.
Be Here Now is the inspiring story of actor Andy Whitfield. It shows how he and his family coped with a devastating cancer diagnosis.
Chien-Ming Wang’s promising career as a pitcher is sidelined by injuries. This documentary shows his struggles to get back to his former glory and provide inspiration for kids just like him.
I’m a big fan of a good underdog story. This is probably because I consider myself a bit of an underdog. This is the story of James J. Braddock. The film starts off with Jimmy on top of the world as a top boxer in his weight class. But, he falls on hard times. He struggles through the Great Depression, with everyone telling him to give up. I think I’ve watched this one 5 times at least. Russell Crowe and Ron Howard make a great team.
Zion is an amazing young man. If you think you have it rough, you need to watch this movie. It isn’t very long – it’s only 11 minutes. When you think something you want is impossible or when you think you can’t do something, watch this.
This film is a bit different than the others I’ve listed but no less inspirational. It documents the hardships and trials that Maya Angelou went through on her way to becoming an award-winning writer that inspired generations of people.
This is just a short list of my top picks. I have many more that I’ve seen. I’ll have to do a deep dive sometime and show you my entire list. Until then, don’t stop looking for content like this.
Tip #3: Pick an inspirational movie that I’ve listed or find one on your own. Watch it. Think/write about why it moved you.
Inspiration From Others
This is a very important skill to have. Learning is crucial to growth.
When we are sick or hurting, we can tend to isolate ourselves and become a bit anti-social. There is no healing that’s going to happen in this negative space.
It’s important for us to see that others are going through the same problems. It’s also important for us to see how others are overcoming those problems.
Here is a short list of some of my co-inspirators. These are people who consistently go above-and-beyond what is expected of someone with their health condition.
Christian Banda has Parkinson’s Disease (Young Onset PD, I believe). This guy is relentless in his pushing himself to the limit despite having a disease that can be debilitating. He is active in the OCR (obstacle course race) community and won’t let PD stop him. He is also an active advocate an all-around nice guy. In fact, in the early stages of my own journey, I looked to Christian for inspiration – and I still do. Make sure you check him out.
Michael Carter uses his challenges as a great tool to motivate and inspire others through his website Disability Don’t Mean Can’t (DDMC). Like me, Michael also has Ataxia. He is also a personal trainer, author, and motivational speaker.
Mike is a very inspiring individual. He has SCA (Spinocerebellar Ataxia), but doesn’t let that stop him. He regularly engages in physical challenges like Spartan races and the like. If you have SCA or Ataxia, you should definitely keep an eye on this guy!
David Lyons has MS, but that doesn’t stop him. He is a personal trainer and bodybuilder. He constantly works to lift up others around him struggling through this horrendous disease.
There are several inspiring people with Parkinson’s Disease and Allie Toepperwein is firmly at the top of that list. She is an athlete, writer, speaker, and mom. So, basically superwoman. She’s even competed on American Ninja Warrior! Be sure to take a look at what she’s up to by checking out her blog or Facebook page.
These are just a few people that immediately come to mind. Take a look around online and I’m sure you’ll find others like this – maybe even with the disability/disease you’ve got.
Tip #4: Connect with one of the inspiring people I’ve mentioned or find one who’s battling the same issues you are.
Remember My Why
This is actually the most important point. It informs the other four, I feel.
I want to stay inspired because I want to inspire and motivate others going through a similar situation. I want to be one of the catalysts that spurs them into action.
When I don’t remind myself of this every day, it makes the days a little bit harder.
Tip #5: Write down your why. What is your purpose? What do you fight for? When you die, what do you want to have done/who do you want to have been?
So, I just covered the things I do when I lose my inspiration or feel de-motivated.
What did you think of this post? Was it helpful? Is it something you needed to hear? Are there other things you do that help you? Let me know by leaving a comment below!