Inner180

Inner180 header image 1

How to Keep Inspiration Alive after the Conference

June 17th, 2010 · 7 Comments

Last week, I was in Colorado attending a convention with 140 amazing coaches.  I heard extraordinary success stories, observed the art of coaching at it’s finest, attended motivating workshops and galvanizing keynotes, and connected with dozens of other like-minded professionals.  I learned, laughed, connected, and grew.  For me, it was a three-day love fest of inspiration, motivation, and empowerment.  When I left, I felt as if I could leap tall buildings in a single bound.

Judging from the tone of the many messages in my inbox and the posts I’ve seen on Facebook, virtually every participant left the convention with similar feelings. Now, four days later, I sense some of the excitement fading.

It’s a common occurrence, right?  Away from our everyday routines we gather for a conference or a retreat and soak up inspiration like dry sponges.  We leave feeling as if transforming our lives was no more difficult than, say, making a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch.  After a few days or weeks though, it’s often back to business as usual.  Inspiration fades and we forget how fabulous it all was and how fabulous we were.

So how can we stay enlivened after we return home to our jobs, mortgages, and everyday routines?  Here are a few ways that can help you stay inspired:

1.  Return to the workshop often. Assemble your notes, schedules, photos, workshop descriptions and handouts into a scrapbook or journal and look at it often.  Recall the fun you had, the ideas that came to you, and your personal highlights of the event.  Make notes and add them to your notebook.

2.  Keep feeling the energy you left with.  Recall the physical sensations in your body when your inspiration was at its peak and you felt unstoppable. Re-experience those feelings regularly by recalling them and breathing into the memories.

3.  Recall the goals, perceptions, and images that you had during the workshop. Write down the thoughts you had when you realized your new life was attainable.  Visualize it, too.  See your transformation in your mind’s eye, as if it were real right now.  Allow yourself to believe that your inspired new life is not only possible, but easily achievable.

4.  Stay connected to your peeps. Email, social media, and cheap long distance telephone make it easy to keep in touch with like-minded attendees.  Organize a weekly group call.  Don’t allow your conversations to backslide into complaints and lost dreams.  Take turns leading the calls, and make a pact with each other to stay focused on inspired, positive themes.  Cheer each other on.

5.  Stay connected to those who inspired you. Most workshop leaders and speakers offer lots of support and further inspiration on their websites.  Much of it is free.  Visit their websites.  Sign up for their teleclasses and ezines.  Read their books and blogs.  Listen to their podcasts.  Friend them on Facebook, “like” their fan pages, follow them on Twitter, and let them continue to guide you to greater inspiration, knowledge, and skills.

6.  Take a daily risk. Commit to taking one tiny step towards your new goals every single day, even if it scares you.  Especially if it scares you.  You’ll quickly discover that overcoming your fears and limiting beliefs through tiny action steps isn’t nearly as uncomfortable as staying stuck in old patterns is.

7.  Remember, transformation is a process, not a destination. Keep reminding yourself that permanent change comes over time.  Commit to giving yourself the gifts of patience and self-acceptance along the way.

So go ahead, and go for it.  Keep your inspiration alive.  Before long, you’ll be leaping tall buildings with a single bound.

Tags: transformation

Happiness is Contagious

February 9th, 2009 · No Comments

Abstract Molecular Structure in Wireframe A study at Harvard Medical School released in December found that happiness spreads through social networks in amazing ways.  One happy person can trigger a happy reaction in a friend who can trigger a happy reaction in another friend, who can trigger another happy reaction in another friend, who (you guessed it) can trigger another happy reaction in yet another friend. In all, this chain reaction can spread three degrees away from the original happy person.

The influence is not only on friends.  Family members and even neighbors catch it, too.  And what’s even more amazing is that this joyous effect can last up to one whole year!

Here’s another finding of the study:  unhappiness is not as powerful as happiness.  Sad feelings do not spread as efficiently as joyful ones.

The study analyzed data from nearly 5,000 people and found that friends, families, and even neighbors can influence each other in ways that spread to indirect relationships-your happiness can influence your neighbor and her friends, her friends’ friends, and their friends’ friends’ friends.

What are some practical implications for those of us who seek to maximize our happiness?  That’s right, hang out with happy people and their friends.  And be aware that your mood can influence others far removed from you.

We may be separated by six degrees, but we are connected by our happiness through three degrees!

Tags: connection · happiness · positive psychology