6 Favorite Inspiration Primers

Inspiration is God making contact with itself.  ~Ram Dass

In various reference sources, the definition of inspiration is first described as the act of drawing air into the lungs.  The term is further defined as a divine influence on expression. The opposite of the term, expiration, refers not only to exhaling, but also the cessation of breathing, or death.  I find these implications pretty profound, don’t you?

A publication on Research Gate shares a review of scientific studies on inspiration. Writers, artists, and other creators have long argued that inspiration is a key motivator of creativity, the paper reads. Over the past decade, scientists have tested and found strong support for these claims.  I just love when science confirms pieces of time-honored wisdom that make life more meaningful!

Monument Valley

According to the Harvard Business Review, psychologists Todd Thrash and Andrew Elliot have identified three foundational aspects of inspiration: spontaneous evocation, transcendence over self-serving concerns, and motivation to actualize a new idea. Further, they say, the heights of human motivation spring from the beauty and goodness that precede us and awaken us to better possibilities.

In the spirit of enhancing the beauty & goodness that precede us, I want to share 6 of the best ways I know for priming the heart and mind to receive inspiration.

  1. Start each day by reading something inspirational or closely observing beauty in some other form.  Even if you, like me, wake up thinking of your to-do list, redirect your thoughts of doing and immerse yourself in being in an aesthetically pleasing manner.  Cognitive researcher and psychologist Nancy Etcoff says that beauty inspires and motivates us.
New Mexico color

  1. Attend an art exhibit or museum.  Viewing the works of creatives, whether local or world renowned, not only brings more beauty and interest into our lives, but also has a way of returning focus to our own creativity.
  2. Go to a concert or other live music event.  Psychologists from McGill University in Montreal studied music’s effects on the brain and found dopamine, a primary feel-good chemical, can be released both in response to music and in anticipation of it.  A great basis for a strike of inspiration, wouldn’t you say?
California coast

Nature is my manifestation of God. I go to nature for inspiration in the day’s work. I follow in building the principles which nature has used in its domain. ~Frank Lloyd Wright

  1. Get outside!  Leave all your devices inside and get outdoors for at least a few minutes each day.  Allow your attention to be fully captivated by the the extraordinary creation surrounding you: wildlife, trees, flowers, boulders, bodies of water, canyons, or other natural beauty.  Martha Stewart, creative extraordinaire, says,  I’m very inspired by nature.  I look around me and get all kinds of inspiration daily.  
  2. Do at least one activity outside of your norm each week.  Schedule it in your planner or on your calendar so it doesn’t fall through the cracks.  New experiences provide new knowledge, opening the way for inspired thoughts, conversations, creative urges, and even new ways of being in the world.

  1. Make note of inspired ideas, even undeveloped ones.  If you’re like me, inspiration can sometimes come in small bits, or in the form of a question.  By recording these little nuggets and pondering them over weeks or months, a complete idea can emerge.  In her book Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert writes about inspiration gifting her with ideas which, after going unused, were passed along to others (as evidenced by later publications of her unique, discarded concepts.)  Don’t let your inspired ideas be regifted!

When we clear the physical clutter from our lives, we literally make way for inspiration and ‘Good, orderly direction’ (God) to enter.  ~Julia Cameron

Whether we’re referring to the act of drawing air into our lungs or being divinely influenced, inspiration is paramount. As long as we are breathing, we are creating, designing our lives in the smaller and larger contexts.  By priming ourselves with beauty and goodness to receive inspiration, we open the way for expanded possibilities that infuse all our creations with deeper meaning.

Blessings for Inspiration,


The content of this article is for educational and informational purposes only, and is not intended as medical advice. Please consult with a qualified health care professional before acting on any information presented herein. Any statements about the possible health benefits of any subject discussed have not been evaluated by medical professionals or the Food & Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease or illness.

58 thoughts on “6 Favorite Inspiration Primers

      1. You are welcome. You always give good advice, and good information. When I read your post, it is almost like reading a story. I read it word for word. It always brings a smile to my face. Everything is laid out so perfectly, and every picture aligns to your writing. Keep on being creative. We all need a little joy and light in the darkness we face everyday. God bless you, and stay safe.

        Liked by 2 people

  1. “Inspiration is God making contact with itself.” — Ram Dass (quoted above). I had never read this prior to reading it here in your blog today. It is true, I believe. I Corinthians 3:16 says our body is the temple of God (Holy Bible: New Testament, King James Version). Since God resides in us, inspiration would be “God making contact with itself.” That would explain why it often seems to be just a thought or a ‘gut feeling.’ Thank You; a very informative and inspirational blog post! 🙏🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. How do I inspire myself?

    1. Engage with creative stuff. Writing, sketching, cartooning, singing etc.

    2. Drinking one glass of warm water in the morning. It changes the whole experience.

    3. Reading or watching something that focuses on understanding basics and deep thinking.

    4. Writing one-liner quotes. Usually, they are in three words. For example, Writing is life, Mission is inspiration etc.

    5. Visiting previous blogs, and reading comments. I thank the bloggers who supported me in the very beginning.

    6. Completing household tasks in certain minutes. It boosts up my energy level to work more.

    I keep searching or creating more ideas. So, inspiring yourself is a continuous process.

    This post is written after research, with full responsibility. I liked it. 👍

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Brilliant! Without breath, we don’t survive and so I guess that we have surely gained most of our inspiration, in art, writing, dance and so on, from the natural world. Technology has changed that and in a way, we have forgotten how to breathe. Every morning and night I remind myself to be grateful for the gift of breath and of life 🤗💐💐🙋‍♂️

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  4. There’s so much inspiration in your post Lisa … not just in your words, but in your beautiful photo’s too.
    My notebook in the house – which I use to make grocery lists or just writing something down I need to remember – has an inspirational quote on each page … I make sure to read this several times during the day – a great way to fill my brain and heart with positiveness 🌸.
    And yes, getting outside in nature … that is my (natural) medicine. When we went hiking in the mountains recently, it was misty and quiet – we could only hear our own footsteps … magical … to hear nothing, but to hear everything. Nature is my inspiration 🍃🍃.

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    1. Hi, I appreciate your visit & comment, HiRO! If you enjoyed Liz’s writing in Eat, Pray, Love, you’ll like Big Magic, too. (And if you haven’t read Eat, Pray, Love, you MUST!) (And, no, the author is not my personal acquaintance. When I was on Facebook, she was always signing her posts “Liz,” so that’s the way I think of her!) Have a fun weekend! 🌞

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  5. First the photos: I especially like the New Mexico and California shots. Good suggestions, Lisa. To add to your idea of visiting museums or art galleries, when Covid started, there were lots of museums and galleries that had free viewing online so perhaps there still are some. It’s also quite easy with the internet to find quotes about all sorts of things, which I find interesting and often inspirational.

    A book you and your followers might enjoy is “Water, Wood, and Wild Things” by Hannah Kirshner. She went to Japan on a number of occasions and immersed herself in a variety of activities which she studied under masters of each. It was fascinating.


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  6. Lisa, I’m inspired by your beautiful photography. It’s the next best thing to being outside. I drink it in and find myself sighing as my body begins to relax and my mind stops rambling. Thank you for helping me be in the moment and to appreciate the blessing of living on this incredible planet.

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  7. A divine post, dear Lisa. Inspiration and expiration, that’s profound. I love your 6 inspiration starters. They are all part of immersing ourselves within ourselves. I love them! Have a beautiful weekend! 🤗🦋

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi, Brian, thanks for popping by. So you find running a marathon inspiring? I’ve never thought of being inspired BY climbing (my equivalent of running!) – being inspired TO climb are the words I use when talking about the sport. But, now that you’ve spurred my thinking, I realize that both apply. After climbing, I’m elated for hours, and sometimes I have a hard time falling asleep at night even though I’m truly spent! Do you have similar experiences after running? Thank you for inspiring me to look at the bigger picture! 🌞

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      1. I do find running Ultra’s inspiring for a number of reasons. One is definitely being out in nature, typically solo (even during a race you can for miles without seeing anyone) and since this is one of those sports you do not want to “keep your head in the game” so to speak I get to enjoy all the beauty, sounds, nuances that the outdoors has to offer…which inspires me to keep going regardless of whatever condition I’m in at the time. Another is the sense of accomplishment, to complete a self-challenge, to push through what you once considered an insurmountable barrier. I tend to set numerous “accomplishments” on my runs – can I make it to point ‘x’, conquer a tough hill, successfully navigate a daunting water crossing etc. Each little victory inspires me to check off of the next one. Then there are my fellow runners that inspire me to do better in each training run and race. Seeing someone power up a hill you were forced to walk, or with absolute fluidity bounce across the rocks earns my admiration and adds another line to my internal running diary. No matter how tired I am after a good or bad run I’ve still grown stronger both physically and mentally and I can’t think of a better inspiration to tackle whatever comes next. I am sure everyone is different and has differing perspectives (t’s what makes life so interesting), but that is in essence my core framework. To bring it all back to your first paragraph I am drawing a lot of air in my lungs during these events ha!

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Love, love, love this blog! It is the awakening that I have needed! I made “screenshots” of your 6 ideas and am going to make the time “that I not only NEED, but DESERVE” to give myself! Thank you for these suggestions!

    Liked by 1 person

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