Wednesday, 4 July 2018

30 Day Writing Challenge 4/30: Someone Who Inspires Me

Day 4: Write about someone who inspires you

I don't think that there is one single person in life that inspires me. There should be names that I could list here of inspirational people who have achieved so much, who have taken their lives from below rock-bottom all the way to the top of their field. But I feel awkward taking too much inspiration from one person or trying to live my life the exact way that another person does. Trying to emulate somebody else doesn't exactly appeal to me.

Different people inspire me for different reasons. My brother inspires me with his courage to take on new challenges. My best friend inspires me with her emotional strength and the way that she was able to turn her whole life around. My old university classmates inspire me with their ambition and their talent. I'm inspired by celebrities who use their fame for good, who give to charity and make dreams come true. Inspiration is everywhere you look.

In the act of looking for inspiration, however, there is that lurking danger of comparison. There is a thin line between inspiration and envy, and I'd like to point to writing as an example. The Instagram writing community is full of talented poets whose work I enjoy a great deal, but whenever a particularly great work appears on my Instagram feed, I can't help but feel a twinge of jealousy that the poem doesn't belong to me. Sure, I can take inspiration from it to create my own poem that incorporates both the best parts of the poem that I saw on Instagram and my own personal flair, but there will still be that lingering wish to be just as good as the writer of the original poem.

There is no joy in comparison, but there is joy to be found in inspiration. Inspiration is how we decide what we want to create and what kind of person we want to be, and when inspiration knocks, it's trying to tell us something important. Answer the door, and be inspired.

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