How to Use Inspiration as a Tool for Success in Business
WORK IS DEFINED TO LEAVE US FEELING LIKE SUPERHEROES. BUT WHEN WE FORGET WHERE WE PUT OUR CAPES, INSPIRATION IS A POWERFUL TOOL TO REJUVENATE OUR SUCCESS IN BUSINESS.
Check out Merriam-Webster’s definition of work:
1: activity in which one exerts strength or faculties to do or perform something: a : sustained physical or mental effort to overcome obstacles and achieve an objective or result
The definition makes me excited about work! Using my effort to overcome obstacles and achieve? I picture superheroes and strong, persevering, inspiring people doing this “work” thing.
Our success is limited if we don’t feel like superheroes at work. We can use inspiration to get inspired at work and as a tool to experience greater success in business!
Use Inspiration as a Tool for Success in Business
1. Inspire your Elevator Pitch with the Inspired "Why"
People can buy what you sell anywhere. The reason they want to buy from you is because you inspire them. When you’re effervescently and genuinely inspired about what you do, they can’t help but want to share in that magic.
Whether you sell a product or offer a service, you’re really selling inspiration.
The best elevator pitch finds a way to share the unique inspiration that fuels why we do what we do. But sharing something so natural can end up being challenging because inspiration is beautiful, deeply personal, energetic and pure. It’s like trying to describe why you love your kid, partner or pet. No words you can say compare to how it feels or how it fuels you. And that’s the magic of a great elevator pitch. You find a way to get the closest you can to sharing that magical feeling that inspires you to do the work you do. It’s not to produce widgets; it’s to change people’s lives while fulfilling and enjoying your own.
2. Use inspiration to build better business relationships and make networking fun
Networking sounds like it’s for computers, not humans. No one likes boring, obligatory business talk. But we light up when we’re asked about what inspires us.
When we use inspiration to get to know and connect with a potential customer, boring business talk and scripted answers transform into fireworks of enthusiastic stories. Faces noticeably light up. Excitement and energy flow freely between the words.
There is a clear, noticeable moment when you can see someone shift from surface conversation into their true selves, enlivening with inspiration.
Ask questions that stop the mundane meet-and-greet, get them talking, and share the kind of authenticity that they’ll expect from working with you. You really hit the jackpot when you discover that you share inspiration! Watch out, that conversation could take you well past your lunch hour!
3. Use inspiration to prevent burnout and achieve work-life balance
Work-life balance is more than just an idyllic buzz-phrase; it’s vital to living a happy life.
By proactively indulging in inspiring activities, you can create the ideal work-life balance, fuel yourself with recharging energy, and prevent burnout. Spending a short amount of time completely present and lost in an inspired activity at night can recharge you for your entire next work day. Using a weekend to catch up on chores and just relax instead of recharge can leave you dreading Monday after an unfulfilling and un-energizing weekend.
4. Feel more fulfillment by doing more of the work you love
Finishing a work day feeling like you “didn’t get anything done” is not going to keep you inspired to do it all again tomorrow. Whether our day is generally predictable or not, we can choose to prioritize completing tasks, projects and goals that will bring us fulfillment, letting us better enjoy our non-work time and fuel our next day of work.
5. Feel more fulfillment by prioritizing project completion
Finishing a work day feeling like you “didn’t get anything done” is not going to keep you inspired to do it all again tomorrow.
Whether our day is generally predictable or not, we can choose to prioritize completing tasks, projects and goals that will bring us fulfillment, letting us better enjoy our non-work time and fuel our next day of work.
6. Make your workspace more inspiring
We spend so much of our time in an office of sorts. Whether a desk, cubicle, office or car, upping the inspiration in our workspace is easy and essential to a more positive daily experience.
There are many small ways you can delight yourself in your “home away from home” that we often take for granted. One of the benefits about inspiration is that even indulging in small moments can result in a significant happiness shift.
7. Be Immune to Adversity: Believe in Yourself, Share Freely and Adopt the Abundance Attitude
Inspiration is immune to adversity, which easily allows us to believe in ourselves, share our best content freely, and adopt the abundance attitude.
When we are inspired by an activity, we are insatiably compelled to pursue it. We don’t do it to make millions of dollars, but we have a better shot at making millions because we are inherently invested and insatiably naturally curious about what we are doing. This curiosity and inspired fuel becomes a torpedo, propelling us toward fulfillment and success.
8. Challenge how you think about stimulation
With today’s overwhelming office of dings, pings and buzzes, it’s easy to feel over-stimulated. But stimulation is getting a bad reputation, disempowering its ability to help us balance our day. Stimulus is just as much the solution as it is the problem.
Positive physical stimulus keeps energy flowing. Inspiration brings us positive energy and stimulus, which are necessary to keep us fueled and keep our energy flowing so we don’t get stuck in overwhelm and stagnation. When we work out, ride a bike, play soccer, walk around a lake, and dance, we experience a flood of positive physical stimulus. Endorphins are flowing, our heart is flushing blood and fresh oxygen throughout our body, and tense or stagnant energy is being challenged and released.
Positive stimulus is an important part of physical and mental health, and therefore essential to using inspiration to experience true happiness.
9. Reveal your struggle and your solution
Our struggle is important. It is impactful for those we want to work with us to know something about our struggle. It’s makes us human. It makes us relatable. It makes us trustworthy. It gives us credibility. If we want to appear perfect, how can we help solve our clients’ problems when we portray that we simply don’t have any?
Perfection isn’t admirable or trusted. Resiliency is. And you can’t be resilient without overcoming a struggle.
I used the word “reveal” because reveal involves a sense of restraint, carefulness, mindfulness, contemplation and strategy. It’s critical that we are authentic with ourselves and others, but we can also choose to be role models.
I included “and your solution” because without a resolve or solution, there is no purpose to sharing the struggle on social media with potential clients. No one admires the person who saw an obstacle, turned around, and gave up.
While being inspired and inspiring may indicate that you need to appear perfect, poised, confident and wildly successful, you also need to be relatable without being a downer. We can share our fight with vulnerability, but we can do so from place of courage and strength.
Reveal your struggle with purpose.
10. Live the Zero Hour Work Week
As I’m watching myself “work” 80 hour weeks to pursue sharing a message and building a business that inspires me, I wonder how Tim Ferriss is creating his podcast and filming his web/tv show while living on a hammock in under four hours a week. That’s when I realized: Tim Ferriss got it wrong.
There are three major fundamental flaws of Tim Ferris’ Four Hour Work Week [FHWW] theory:
- It preys upon those less confident or competent, requiring the to not ascend for us to thrive
- The time it takes to achieve a Four Hour Work Week evens out the time eventually saved, except you lost months or years of work-life balance
- Feeding the mentality that work needs to be unpleasant, avoided and eliminated goes against the law of attraction
A SOLUTION THAT IS LESS ELITIST, MORE REALISTIC, MORE FULFILLING AND MORE COMMUNITY-MINDED IS TO SEEK A ZERO HOUR WORK WEEK.
Ironically, the Zero Hour Work Week is more attainable, and you can start living the Zero Hour Work Week right now. When you do what inspires you, it’s not working. It’s living.