Everyone gets into an idea rut. We can't pull our thoughts together to creatively problem-solve, write, or even imagine what's next for us. We are uninspired. When it happens to you, where do you go for inspiration?
My brain is constantly churning out new ideas. Here I share the first 11 of 22 sources of inspiration that keep my creative juices flowing, and here are the remaining 11 sources.
I hope some of them inspire you as well, and lead you to new ways of thinking about life.
1: Music. Music is one of my greatest sources of inspiration. Musicians are shining examples of what it means to follow your dream. They can't exist without doing what they were meant to do.
There's nothing like completely losing yourself in a great concert for 3 hours, surrounded by hundreds or thousands of other groupies. The experience is always transformative.
Not sure who to tune in to? Check out the highest paid musicians who clearly inspire millions.
2: Movies. Movies detach us from our own reality for two hours. Great movies take us on emotional roller coasters, show the best and worst of humanity, and allow us to temporarily assume another identity. Great movies grip us by the heart.
Looking for a film that can move your past your mental block? Check out the top 100 most inspiring films of all time.
3: Theatre. Like music, live theatre shows us what it means to chase your dream. Great theatre also invites us to lose ourselves in the lives of other people for a few hours. Check out the best Broadway shows of 2016.
4: Museums. I love checking out from work for an afternoon and losing myself in a museum. Being inside some museums is a temporary departure from the real world. Being in others reminds us of how life used to be before the 21st century.
There are inspirational museums all over the world. Check out 18 inspirational museums that will take your breath away.
5: Books. Whether fiction or non-fiction, there is no shortage of inspirational literature. Wondering what to read next? Here are 16 of the most inspirational books for 2016.
6: Sports icons. One of the easiest ways to get a quick fix of inspiration is to turn on the Olympics. No where is the "thrill of victory" and "agony of defeat" more evident. Check out the 10 most inspiring Olympic athletes to root on.
7: TED Talks. I watch a TED Talk almost every day. There are so many brilliant people who have mastered the art of story-telling to help us see thing in a different light.
Here are the 28 most inspirational and motivational TED Talks to inspire you and move you through your idea drought.
8: Our veterans. Perhaps it's because I have the honor of working with our veterans that I am so personally impacted by the sacrifices they have made for our country, but our veterans are one of my greatest inspirations. Their selflessness and bravery can inspire all of us to stretch ourselves beyond our comfort zone.
9: The Elderly. The people that have gone before us are our best educators. Their perspectives and experiences can inspire us to slow down, to not get lost in our struggles, and to truly appreciate life.
10: Kids. When was the last time you watched children playing? Their carefree spirit is something that we all embodied at one time. We can all learn a lot from a young child's lack of concern over what others think of them, and how it feels to be completely focused on having fun.
11: Learning Communities. Great speakers, in a room filled with other like-minded people, are sure to inspire us to look at opportunities and challenges differently. From global organizations like Entrepreneurs Organization (EO), Young Presidents Organization (YPO), and Women Presidents Organization (WPO) to Chambers of Commerce, there are opportunities everywhere to surround yourself with continuous learning.
This is the first 11 of 22 great sources of inspiration; you can find the additional 11 sources here. My hope is that you've been inspired to look at things differently, and you've looked in different places.
When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.