By Rob Heimann
Inspiration, motivation and getting my arse kicked
Forget the clichés, don’t be misled by the story of Proust’s Madeleine and definitely don’t buy the lie that inspiration and ideas come from nothing.
It is worth noting that inspiration and ideas are not the same thing. One can be the cause of the other. Inspiration might provide a glut of ideas good and bad, or an idea might inspire another better one.
I have a very active imagination, that helps but it doesn’t cause me to be inspired; it allows me to run with an idea and do weird or fantastical things with it. My imagination is the ground in which I can grow ideas and tempt inspiration.
So inspiration is important, essential even to make something average sparkle. SO how can you be more inspired? Do you need to be a particularly creative person? Do you have to have an especially active imagination? No, not really. I am a creative person; I have an excellent imagination but I won’t be inspired any more than anyone else if I don’t work at it.
I hadn’t been consistently inspired for some time because I wasn’t working at it. I was allowing my brain to turn to mush. You need to stimulate your mind with anything, everything. It’s different for everyone. You might need to go to art galleries, or the cinema, or read, or meditate, maybe all of these. Maybe none. But if you aren’t working specifically to stimulate and fertilise your mind you’ll get nothing and go nowhere. Like everything else in life, you won’t get far if you don’t work for it.
For me no matter what I do, no matter how many ideas I have, or whether I am struck by a moment of inspiration, it won’t do much because (to be kind to myself) I find it near impossible to do these things just for me. I need structure, routine, deadlines and someone I am responsible to. Someone to kick my arse. Then it all falls into place. Not only can I then produce work but I will enjoy it. I will be inspired. I will have ideas. In the past this was very difficult for me, but the more I accept that this is (for now) a part of me, the more motivated, the more excited, the more inspired I am.
SCA is already kicking my arse. And I love it.