Honoring What Inspires You

In our travels west, after spending Christmas in Maryland with Ben’s family, we’re served by countless members of wait staff, clerks, hotel staff, and other people in the service industry. And it’s easy to let them all just blur into a faceless mob as we’re rapidly heading west.

But this evening, I had the great pleasure to be able to give to inspiration. We stopped for the night and the only available restaurant was a chain – NOT our favorite. The wait staff all seemed really harried and hurried – even though the place was only about half full. It took over 40 minutes just to get our food.

When we were at the counter paying, I asked if they were short staffed in the kitchen because it had taken so long to get our food. The rather hassled looking young woman answered that about an hour before we got there, the fire suppression system had gone off in the kitchen – soaking EVERYTHING and creating a complete system restart. I instantly had a different view of the wait! (And why everybody was looking so stressed.)

As Ben was finishing his credit card transaction, the manager swooped in and cancelled it – saying that 40 minutes was outrageous and dinner was on her. Wow! (I really hadn’t been fishing for a discount; just an answer!)

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But as she was cancelling the transaction, and we were thanking her, I said that I did want to tip the waitress, Brittany, who had done a fabulous job taking care of us. Both Brittany and the manager looked shocked that I still wanted to tip.

What I was doing was honoring an inspiring young woman (she was all of about 17) who kept her cool, her smile, and her composure as she was clearly feeling so stressed.

In these last weeks of the year (and in the next few weeks) you’ll see dozens of articles about setting goals for 2016. I encourage you to read them. But instead of spending all this time in reflection and planning, I invite you to do something else:

Reach out to somebody who inspires you.

This can be in business, your life, or your writing. It can be somebody you know personally or a business mentor or author you’ve never met. But what I want you to do is to make an effort to tell them how and why he or she is your inspiration.

BTW: If it is an author you don’t know, there’s always contact information in the book somewhere. A letter or email addressed to a publisher usually does reach the author.

Now, I’m not saying that you’re going to write fan mail to a celebrity! I’m saying true inspiration – the type that makes YOU dig deep and keep going. The type that makes your creativity fountain run after nearly going dry. The type of inspiration that makes you take a deep breath, lace your boots up tighter, and keep putting one foot in front of another.

The person who inspires you when everything else in your life has turned to darkness.

It’s time to reach out to THAT person.

I look at this as a karmic donation to inspiration. You’re not donating your time or money (although you can!) but you’re acknowledging the inspiration. What you focus on you attract – so by putting your attention on what inspires you, you’ll bring more inspiration into your life.

Finish the year with an ode to inspiration. (Or at the very least a warm email to somebody who makes your eyes light up!)

Kim Galloway
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