What does it mean to live an inspired life? Wow…OK, so we’re just jumping right into the deep end straight away huh? Hold on- I think I might need a bigger glass of wine- ha, ha! But seriously, how often have you stepped back, taken a good hard look around and asked yourself that very question? Every day? Once in a while? Or not at all? I’ll be honest. I can remember a time when I didn’t know the answer either. Life was just happening all around me and I was along for the ride. Today, I live more intentionally; an inspired life if you will. Guess what? You can too.
Imagine life as one big amusement park. Are you currently riding the roller coaster? In my 20’s, I used to be this person and it almost killed me. On this ride, the highs and lows of everyday life are the equivalent of a modern day opium epidemic. You are either on your way up, joyously giddy with so much excitement you can scarcely breathe, or you are speeding down, wallowing in depression and self-pity. There are very few moments of even, gentle grace on this coaster, and you find yourself creating drama just so you can get back on and feel the rush. If this is your life I seriously urge you to choose a new ride.
In my 30’s, I finally discovered the ‘giant swing’. The giant swing is that graceful, beautifully painted ride that lifts you up and gently whirls you about. It’s tucked back in the older section of the park and has been around for a while. The lines aren’t very long- so many people pass it over in the endless pursuit of the new and shiny. The ride up is fun! You look around and take in all the park details. You see the smiles and hear the laughter of everyone around you as you appreciate the moment together. The way down is equally gratifying as well because, why you may be sad that the fun is over, your stomach feels well enough when your feet hit the ground that you can wait in line and experience it all over again. Trust me when I say that this ride is one you can enjoy for years and years without it ever needing to close down for maintenance.
So how can you live an inspired life on the giant swing? The first way to start is by taking time to look outward instead of just in. The roller coaster is only about you, the giant swing is about everything else. As I write this, it’s August and summer is officially in full swing. I took a walk outside tonight to try and slow down the days that are rapidly clicking by. I watched dragonflies dance over a farmer’s field, and heard the rhythmic chorus of the cicadas. On my way back, it was nearing dusk and the fireflies starting blinking their yellow light like magic taps from a fairy’s wand. Time stopped for a little while and peace filled me. When was the last time you really looked at the life that’s happening all around you? The beauty of noticing such small moments has a way of easing your mind back into grace.
Taking stock of the details has not only fed my soul, but also my mind. Each piece of jewelry I design is inspired by something that I took a moment to experience. My silver bar earrings, necklace and triple gemstone bracelet, for example, are fashioned after what I observed during an evening scuba diving trip in Cozumel years ago. At night, the undersea comes alive. We were diving on a long pier using underwater lights. The barnacles were tinged blue by the sea, old dock line clung to the pilings from some long ago ship and colorful fish scurried to and fro, not able to decide between hiding and curiosity. The water was warm, the moon was full and bubbles from the scuba gear floated upward to the surface of the water. It was a magical night that I replicated from that memory in these pieces. I had taken time to notice.
Becoming more aware of the things around you is the first step towards living an inspired life. Next time, we’ll talk about other things you can do. But for today, try to think about this first tip and be in the moment. Make time to notice something you never knew was there. Think about which ride you’re really on. Then, sit on the giant swing, lean way back and let yourself fly.
xo – Cheryl
P.S. Were you inspired by this post? I’d love to hear your comments so hit reply and tell me your story.
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