Sunday, March 8, 2009

Light a Fire under Your Butt

At Toastmasters, I was recently responsible for the segment called "Inspiration". Curious about the development of the word, I turned to the etymology dictionary.

One source cited the Latin word "inspirare" - to inspire, to inflame or to blow into. These definitions all require oxygen and show movement. Not unlike inspiration. When we are inspired, we feel moved and we breathe easily - we have purpose and that gives our lives meaning.

Looking at the word "inflame" it wasn't too much of a stretch to think that when we're inspired it's as if we have a fire under our butt. Or, even a fire in our belly. We're motivated and ready to take action.

Robert Kennedy, a friendly neighbour on Twitter, finds a lot of inspiration and motivation in his family and his work. This is reflected in the positive and helpful nature of his tweets. (On Twitter, a "tweet" is a post under 140 characters.) He is able to use this to his advantage and accomplish what he needs to do in his life - a great stress transformation technique!

When someone is chronically stressed, finding inspiration can be an insurmountable task. The flood of physical and chemical changes leads to ever-increasing feelings of worthlessness, inability or lack of hope. Each bout of negative thinking and feeling opens the tap to more of the same. Your autonomic nervous system is out of balance and amongst other things, this leaves you feeling tired, worn-out and disinterested in life.

What is the solution when there is a flood? Turn off the tap! Learn techniques to arrest the side-effects created by those 1,400 chemical changes. When you do, you'll find that you're able to keep your head above water - just enough to get a breath and then, another breath. Soon, you'll dry out and be amazed to discover that you are taking more of interest in life.

What lights a fire under your butt? What are your passions? Do you jump out of bed looking forward to what the day may bring?

Image courtesy of: B Cleary

4 comments:

  1. Nothing I am afraid. I am one of those naturally cheerful types who wakes up in the morning with a song in his heart and a smile on his lips. Just about every one close to me think that it is disgusting that I am like that.

    Okay, let us moderate that a bit. I do occasionally have bouts of the blues but, I snap out of it very fast with just a cup of tea or a word from my wife or son or a telephone call from a friend or whatever.

    So, I really do not understand this need for motivation and what will motivate etc.

    On the other hand, I do have people in my life who need such a fire below their bottoms, and I use TLC. It works.

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  2. Ramana , I'm glad to hear that you are one of those cheerful sorts who can talk themselves into better heart rhythms.

    It's better for you, your family and the world. But, you already know that. :)

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  3. I have always believed that stress is managed from within each person. It only becomes stress if you allow it to. It has taken me a very long time to realize this and when I did my life changed.

    Things that help me cope:
    1) My dog
    2) Happy thoughts
    3) My friends
    4) Fond memories
    5) Realizing worry changes nothing

    Thanks for the reference Auntie Stress :-)

    Cheers,

    Rob

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  4. Rob, awareness or to paraphrase you, "the realisation that stress comes from within," is empowering, and is what leads to change.

    I had no idea that what I was thinking and feeling was creating stress for myself. It led to frequent colds, inability to sleep, ill-health and isolation, amongst other things.

    It is crucial for people to do as you have done and identify what is important in their lives. The beauty is that it doesn't have to be big to bring about a physiological change. When that happens, other things start to change, too.

    Thanks for stopping by and having a visit!

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Welcome! I know your life is busy. That's why I appreciate your stopping by to comment.