Effort can be helpful. Effort can get us to lift more weight, more times. It can get us to run farther, or faster. But effort fails to capture everything we have within us. Effort is like squeezing liquid from a sponge, whereas inspiration is more like the natural lift of buoyancy.
Effort involves ego. It’s when we’re doing whatever it is for abstract reasons instead of acting from an internal drive. Inspiration is when we feel pulled to do something rather than pushed. Rather than intellectually knowing something is good for us, we should feel the thrill of engagement and do whatever it is as an act of expressing our own life and vitality. It should be more of a celebration of everything, rather than striving for some specific thing.
You’re not looking for phrases like, come on, you can do this, or; just three more blocks, just three more. Just keep moving, or; push!!!!!! You should feel like you’re excited to do the thing because you know you’re moving along your path toward your own surprises. You’re not exercising your body, you should be exercising your spirit. Flex it.
Of course you can do it, and you don’t reach a running goal, you’re chasing something and you can feel the thrill of catching up to it. And the weight you’re lifting doesn’t require your effort, you simply need to exert your superior understanding of the forces of the universe. After all, we’re all only atoms lifting atoms. Atoms are mostly space. Stay aware of how ephemeral the weight you’re moving really is.
Stop talking your ego into things and start being them. The real you doesn’t need a pep talk. It doesn’t even use language. The strong part of you simply understands that you need time to master new things, but that no new thing is outside of your capability. You have to approach everything in life aware that you have a natural prowess at it all–you just often psyche yourself out with words in your head too often.
Quiet your mind. Simply act. If you catch yourself thinking you do not respond by being upset or scolding yourself, you simply move back into action. Action, action, action. Move your day from activity to activity. Stay aware as you flow through each function. Fully be the thing you are doing. Make you and the activity into one thing. Forget the words and flow into being the real you. It’ll take courage, but only because you do it so seldom. If you consciously did it more often you’d soon realise that capability is your natural state.
Go make your day happen. Act as though even your derailments are a part of the plan for your day. React as though you were expecting them. Act, act, act. Less thinking, more being. Become some type of verb, whether it’s to read, to write, or engage in physical effort.
Avoid getting in your own way with words and instead conjure for yourself the pure feeling of capability. After all, every time you’ve felt capable it was only because you told yourself it was so. Therefore I would suggest that you take the entire day today, and make it so again.
Scott McPherson is an Edmonton-based writer, public speaker, and mindfulness facilitator who works with individuals, companies and non-profit organizations locally and around the world.
A serious childhood brain injury lead Scott to spend his entire life meditating on the concepts of thought, consciousness, reality and identity. It made others as strange to him as he was to them. When he realized people were confused by their own over-thinking, Scott began teaching others to understand reality. He is currently CBC Radio Active’s Wellness Columnist, as well as a writer, speaker and mindfulness instructor based in Edmonton, AB where he still finds it strange to write about himself in the third person.