Today’s show is the fourth in a series of five short episodes that I’ve pulled together to help grow greater positivity in the world. I've selected the five topics because they are about taking action. With ongoing practice, they will help you boost your positivity.
The first three habits – Smile, Gratitude and Kindness are very easy to identify. The fourth positivity habit I encourage you to cultivate and I introduce in this show, is a little more subtle and abstract, but definitely a positivity booster. It's the habit of being inspired.
Finding Inspiring Moments to Boost Positivity
I love this one, because it allows for so many inputs that can elevate and expand your mood in ways that move you deeply. You’ve heard me talk about downward spirals that negativity can send you off on, and then there are upward spirals of positivity that we can consciously cultivate. Seeking out your inspiring moments is a habit worth cultivating. You can build your own repertoire of inspiration and pull them out whenever you feel the need to feel inspired.
Listen to the episode to find our my favorite, tried and true ways to be inspired. They include:
- Being outdoors in nature
- Learning how others have overcome challenges and sorrows through listening to and sharing their stories
- Watching humanity perform at its best (as in the video below)
- Noticing what kids can create with their imaginations and ingenuity
Watching humanity perform at its best is why this video of Oprah Winfrey's acceptance speech of the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2018 Golden Globe is so inspiring to me, as it was to the audience in the room and the attention that it has attracted since.
Our Personal Stories Provide Inspiring Moments for Others
One can analyze Oprah's speech and find many reasons why it's so powerful and so inspiring. One of the successful contributing factors is the power of story. Oprah tells personal stories and weaves the stories of others into her message that connect in a raw and meaningful ways. We feel the connective tissue that unites us. We are inspired by the stories of others. She says:
Each of us in this room are celebrated because of the stories that we tell, and this year we became the story.
When you feel yourself moved, it could be that you are lifted from your own self absorption or small world. You shift to an awareness and reality that there are forces in the world that are much bigger than you, outside you; and, yes! you ARE part of them and are moved by them in a heartfelt way.
And being lifted out of your own self-absorption isn’t the only reason for seeking inspiration – even though I recommend actively seeking other inputs to shift your energy.
Being Present Sparks Unexpected and Delightful Inspiring Moments
There is spontaneous inspiration that comes from being present to what’s going on in your immediate environment. It’s about paying attention and being mindful. There are things in your everyday conversations than can delight and inspire you. When are you inspired momentarily you are taken to a world outside yourself, yet you feel yourself in that world. You relate and feel moved.
Why Inspiration is a Worthwhile Habit to Boost Positivity
Allowing yourself to be inspired is right up there as a great way to boost positivity. The inspiration can come from someone you admire because they’ve done great things in their life. You are inspired by human excellence, as with the example above. Moreover, the person does not have to be famous. It could be someone close to you: your mother, your grandfather, your spouse, a teacher.
Seeing people at their very best is inspiring and uplifting. Inspiration makes you want to do good because you are inspired by something outside yourself that touches your heart. It takes you out of your own self centeredness.
How to Seek Out Inspiration
This state of positivity is influenced by your choices about who you hang out with and what stimuli you allow into your life. It might mean you need to stop doing the things that bring you down and depress you. To feel inspired and enjoy the positivity boost from that, you need to actively stimulate yourself with people and events, and shows and scenes that inspire you and fill you with possibilities of life affirming goodness and vitality. If you get depressed by watching negative news, make a choice to not watch the news. If there are people in your life who complain and are negative and pull you down, it’s time to strategize how you can counteract their influence by finding sources of inspiration.
Practices to Grow More Sources of Inspiration
Here are some practices that might help you seek out more inspirations in you life and, as a result, boost your positivity:
- Make a list of people and things you find inspiring, and seek more of their inputs. If they're media personalities, or famous in other ways, it’s easy today access their inspiring work on the internet, or download songs or books, or photos or movies. If they are authors, read more of their works; if entrepreneurs or teachers, learn more about their work and apply it to yours.
- When you come across something inspiring, make a note of it. You might begin to create a collection of references or quotes that you can refer to and share with others.
- Be open to inspiration, and savor those moments, and feel the surge of warm positivity flowing through your body.
- When inspired, notice how you are touched and how your heart opens.
- Deeply consider what can you cultivate from your own strengths and talents that will inspire others.
- Set a goal to inspire others which is a great way to find the sources that will inspire you.
The opportunity to host and create this podcast has offered me many conversations with inspiring individuals, whose mission and purpose in life I find uplift me. I find the stories of people overcoming adversity and hardship and illness hugely inspiring. People who’ve tried new things and contributed in ways that serve others inspire me to continue to be the best I can be.
I want to be a source of inspiration to others through my personal stories, my work – including this podcast – and I get that feedback, for which I am hugely grateful. Increasing I feel humbled and uplifted knowing that we are strengthening our community.
Sharing stories helps us experience our common humanity. We learn from others. When inquire into their stories and listen, we find sources of connection that breathe life into us – inspire – us to think differently, act more courageously, listen more compassionately and embrace the fullness of life – the sorrows and the joys.
Link with Robyn
Find out more about my journey to positivity
My TEDx Talk – all about positivity through playful inquiry
Let's Stay Connected
It's always great to hear from you. Please connect with me to ask questions or leave comments about this episode or the podcast in general, and there are several good ways to do this:
- Share your questions and ideas on the Podcast Feedback page
- Leave a voice message here, and we may feature your question on an upcoming episode
- Leave a comment on the show notes below
Help Spread the Message of Positivity!
I would be extremely appreciative if you would subscribe, rate or review our Positivity Strategist podcast. Your ratings and comments will help a lot to spread the message! Here is a guide to writing a quick review, click on iTunes and Stitcher.