Dictionary.com: To inhale.
Breathing: We can’t live without it (duh)! But we take it for granted, or at least I do, until I can’t do it very well, like when I have a cold. Oh, how I appreciate clear nasal passages and an airway free of mucus during those times! But let’s take a closer look at Inspiration, the function of breathing in.
During the in-breath, the diaphragm contracts. The chest inflates. To do it fully we must sit or stand up straight. The spine elongates, the sternum lifts, and the ribs spread, to accommodate three dimensions of filling capacity. Negative pressure sucks in not only air, but venous blood, returning it to the heart. Inspiration, then, constitutes expansion, loading, and readying for the next phase in a beautifully rhythmic, life-sustaining cycle. It is necessary and automatic.
Dictionary.com: To fill with an animating, quickening, or exalting influence.
How and when are we Inspired? What then, do we do with our bodies? We breathe deep, straighten our posture. We feel steady and resilient, and we get to work. We discover previously dormant or untapped creativity, and gears start turning. Ideas flow; actions flow; we flow. In addition to expansion, loading, and priming, Inspiration stimulates openness, Inclusion, and possibility. We can move Infinitely farther, faster, higher, and stronger with Inspiration than without it. Inspiration Ignites. And, under the right conditions, I would argue it is also necessary and automatic.
Fueled by Inspiration, fully oxygenated and standing tall, we can then truly start to Innovate. We can ask questions that might otherwise seem too hard:
- What would I do if I knew I could not fail (cliché, I know, but bear with me here)?
- If I fail, how could that actually be cool?
- If we collaborated rather than competed, what more could we accomplish?
- What is the greatest good that could come of this Idea, how far could it actually get?
- How does this relate to everything else that I am about and that I do?
- How could I make this a win-win?
- What needs to happen in order for this to really take off?
- What if they’re not just fantasies, after all?
How Infinite is human Imagination?
Ironically, Inspiration and Imagination can feel Intimidating. Too often we are held back by thoughts that resemble humility, such as, “Who am I to challenge the status quo,” and, “I’m only one person, what do I know? The people in charge must know what they’re doing, I should trust their leadership.” Or maybe it’s fear? In a world that operates too often on an assumption of scarcity, we may mistakenly believe that our Ideas and Innovations might threaten others, and rocking the boat can have unInvited consequences. Or, maybe, we simply cannot yet believe in our own greatness.
New Ideas and Innovations do not necessarily negate those that came before them. Indeed, their evolution often depends on previous Iterations. There is no need to disavow or Invalidate anything already existing in order to bring forth something Inventive. Intoned with respect and proper deference, the new may be Integrated with the old—synergized.
If we can hold Inviolable our core connections, common humanity, and love, just think of how we could advance our world with Intense and unInhibited brilliance!