The importance of inspiration and five tips for finding it

People often describe inspiration coming to them in ‘flashes’ or ‘sparks’. It hits suddenly causing a bright idea to randomly pop into our heads or leads the solution to a tricky problem to slot into place.

The feeling is integral to maintaining enthusiasm for both life and work as it enhances determination and creativity – without it you’ll find yourself going through the motions, becoming bored of activities that used to excite you or butting your head up again the same challenges repeatedly.

Although it can be tricky to harness on demand, there are plenty of techniques that can help you get there organically. Understanding what inspiration is and where it comes from can help you encourage it to strike more often.

Check out our deep dive into the concept below and learn how you can get inspired to help those ideas start flowing again…


What is inspiration?

Inspiration is a feeling that motivates us to feel or do something, especially to do something creative. It’s a flash of enthusiasm that pushes us to complete our goals, pick up a new hobby or take the initiative to solve a particularly tricky problem.

It can also be the act of motivating somebody else by showing them what’s possible through your actions and words.

The importance of inspiration

Without these flashes of motivation, we’d spend every day struggling with the same challenges. It awakens our minds to new possibilities which drives fresh ideas, providing us with the means and motivation to rise above our problems, learn from others, and harness our creativity.

Aside from helping us to grow closer to our goals, inspiration has plenty of other benefits too.

Evidence suggests that people who regularly feel inspired report feeling more engaged, have a stronger drive, are more creative, and open to new experiences (Harvard Business Review).

When we feel that burst of creativity our bodies produce higher levels of serotonin and dopamine which are the neurochemicals associated with feeling happy and reducing stress (Intention Inspired).

It’s especially important to foster such feelings in the workplace, as working in a motivating environment can lead to greater productivity and less stress.

Five tips for getting inspired

Inspiration is extremely powerful, but it isn’t always easy to harness. Luckily, we’ve outlined a couple of tips that can help you seek it out…

  1. Read a book – Literature is one of the most diverse forms of inspiration, with books written on almost every topic. They allow us to understand the perspective of many different people and cultures and can offer much needed escapism that can help get the creative juices flowing.
  2. Shake up your routine – Routine can sometimes be a motivation killer. Switch up your day-to-day and open yourself up to new experiences. Why not visit a gallery, try out a new restaurant or even just head out on a walk.
  3. Practise mindfulness – Mindfulness is the practise of purposely bringing your attention back to the present moment. It’s been shown to reduce stress, anxiety and depression, which are all inspiration blockers (NHS). Mindfulness supports your ability to create a positive mindset, leading you to become happier and more creative.
  4. Speak to other people – One of the best sources of imagination and motivation is talking to others and using them as a sounding board for ideas. Hearing another person’s insights is often enough to get the creative juices flowing.
  5. Listen to music – When working on a difficult task, we often fall into repetitive and unhelpful thinking patterns. Listening to music is a great way to mix up your mindset, leaving you better equipped for that next lightbulb moment.

At Adapt, there are plenty of opportunities to practise all of the above, whether that’s through chatting to co-workers, taking a trip to the onsite library or joining in with one of the free monthly mindfulness sessions in The Clubhouse.

Speak to our community manager Farrah to find out more.