Your intention shapes your inspiration

Future of Being

Since I began my writing challenge, I’ve noticed a marked difference in how I interact with the world and the people around me.

I used to move through the world believing that I was an active agent rather than a passive participant in my own life. But reality kicked me into the middle of the playground and cast me as a fool in front of my very own consciousness. I was complacently expecting inspiration to strike me like a clap of thunder that refuses to be ignored, as the blocked creative so often does (shoutout to Julia Cameron for giving me the language to describe this). I wasn’t sculpting every single interaction, circumstance and event with a pointed blade of intentionality. I was waiting. I was watching. I was receiving. An unexpected side effect of this passive way of experiencing the world was that my memory suffered. With little intentionality upon entering an interaction and with little intentionality in reflecting upon said interaction, there were few reasons for new stories, evolved opinions or developed convictions to stick in my mind.

When I started writing daily, things began to change. I’ve started moving through life as if I am an artist and every interaction I have is a paintbrush with which to paint upon my canvas of self-understanding. Rather than waiting for inspiration to happen to me, I can now experience it on demand. The daily practice of being inspired by something, anything, over the course of the day and then sitting down to write about it has embedded within me a habit of deep curiosity. I am now significantly more aware of every aspect of my inner landscape, my body, my relationships, my dreams, my interactions and my environment.

I am no longer asleep at the wheel, 60 miles per hour, with my eyes wide shut. I am wide awake, eyes constantly scanning my environment for signs of life, danger, excitement, risk, unexpected pedestrians. What can I learn from the movement of the dainty leaf that has just danced carelessly across my windscreen? How might I interpret the sudden swerve of the car in front of me–did a fellow driver nod off at the wheel, or did a bird spontaneously decide it wanted to flaunt its courage? What could have possessed that pedestrian to sprint across the street when the traffic light was red and the night around us pitch black?

If you care to become the main character of your life, I urge you to wake yourself up by dousing your every action with intentionality. I have done this through making writing (and reflection, as a prerequisite of that) a daily habit. For you that may look entirely different. It matters less what the method is, and more that your intention is sound.

April 1, 2024