STRATEGIC NARRATIVE INSIGHTS
5 Rules for Practical Inspiration
Every entrepreneur I’ve met secretly wishes they could raise their hand to inspire people to do what they want.
Raise your hand and say: “Buy my product.” The customer buys your product.
Raise your hand and say: “Come work with me”. New talent joins your company.
And so on.
Unfortunately, unlike Prince Charming in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, success is not magical. It will not show up unless you knock on his door and get it.
The ability to inspire people to align and take action is not something magic. It is real and practical. Inspiring people is something that takes work, a lot of work. And you should be thrilled about that because it means you can also learn how to do it.
OK, I have met a couple of people in my life with a natural ability to inspire everyone around them. But they represent maybe 0.1 % of our population. I am definitely not one of them. So I and the rest of us need to learn, practice, and work hard to animate people’s souls with new ideas.
Over the years, I learned a few very tactical things on this topic, and I’d like to offer a handful of tips I apply to myself and my clients regularly and frequently.
So, how do you generate inspiration?
1 - First, you inspire yourself first.
How do you expect people to be inspired by your idea if they can’t see and feel why this idea inspired you in the first place?
2 - You go create it.
You don’t wait for inspiration to knock at your door. Ideas have a life of their own. They exist everywhere around us. But they’re like mischievous little animals that pass by our mental door without ringing the bell. If you don’t intentionally go connect with ideas in your mental and emotional surroundings, you will miss your creative genius. Read Elizabeth Gilbert’s book, The Big Magic, a masterpiece on this topic.
3 - You schedule it.
Yes, literally schedule when you want to generate flow on demand. I do it now using Focusmate, a virtual coworking platform that helps you get things done, including inspiring yourself and others.
4 - You give it unconditionally.
Don’t control who, when, if, and why you should inspire. You do it for everything, everywhere, and all at once. Many business leaders are manipulation geniuses, experts at only inspiring one segment of their community (e.g., their investors or customers only). But when you look at their team, their souls are dying. Don’t do that, please. Inspire around you, 360 degrees, all the time, and with everyone.
5 - You co-create it.
I may have hinted at the general assumption that inspiration is a solo game. Although it should start with yourself, inspiration is not just about you. It’s about then. It’s not what you say. It’s what they say, feel, and ultimately do. As I explained in my book, building an inspiring strategic narrative is, first and foremost, an act of leadership, a practice of helping people develop their capacity to mobilize.
Are you feeling inspired to keep reading about inspiration this weekend?
Here are a few previous articles on the topic of inspiration:
Also, a quick note that Strategic Narrative Essentials is happening this coming Thursday, and I’d love to have you join us. Click here to get inspired to register. It’s free. Does that practically inspire you?