Acting on Inspiration

inspiration

Although I’ve previously written about Intuition and Inspired Action, this post is really about the finer art of acting on inspiration.

Chances are, as a creative or healing entrepreneur, listening to your intuition is like second-nature to you. There’s no need to preach to the choir about the power of intuition.

Acting on Inspiration

Inspiration is defined as the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative. Some thoughts are inspiring, others not so much and there’s a good reason for that.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: True inspiration comes with the energy to act upon it. In fact, it’s common for inspiration to be so moving, that it propels you forward into action before you’ve even realized it. So many times, I’ve realized I was inspired when the action itself is nearly complete. THAT is the incredible power of inspiration!

If you have a thought that doesn’t feel inspiring or come with the energy to complete the task, that emotional response is a sign for you to STOP.

Does this scenario sound familiar…

Just as you are winding down for the day, you get this GREAT IDEA that is so exciting you almost do not want to go to sleep…so you write it down to take action first thing in the morning. The next morning, you look at the idea again and it barely warrants a shrug. You wonder: What was I thinking when I bothered to write this down? Your excitement to take the action has transformed into doubt as to why you’d ever want to give that idea your energy.

If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. It’s not all bad news, either. Great ideas come to entrepreneurs ALL the time. Reminds me of the phrase, “Ideas are a dime a dozen.” But it’s not the idea’s fault or problem that it didn’t stir you the next day. Ideas, themselves, are neutral.

Let’s start with the REALLY GOOD news: Ideas are flowing to you. Celebrate that. Seriously! It’s a very good thing to have a consistent flow of ideas, especially as an entrepreneur.

The most successful entrepreneurs appreciate good ideas, even the ones they won’t be taking action on! James Altucher has written about his practice of generating 10 ideas a day for others, honing his skills for coming up with (hopefully some) good ideas for himself, as well.

However, having a steady flow of ideas doesn’t mean every idea is meant for you or your business. If the idea no longer appeals, it’s meant for someone else to take action. Let it go.

That late-night flash which felt so good at the time is still a great idea…but it’s not the great idea for you to act upon when the positive feeling is gone the next day. Don’t *diss* the idea, itself, just recognize that the lack of juice is showing you it’s not for you to take action upon.

Pet Peeve: Misleading “Massive Action”

There are many motivational speakers insisting everyone take “Massive Action” to attain success. People are told to take action, ANY action, and a LOT of it! This is a very masculine approach to life…Get out there…Assert yourself on everything and everyone…GO, GO, GO!!! If you snooze, you loose…

Even when it’s the wrong action for you or your business. Even if you’re flailing. Even if you’re burning yourself out. Even if you’re miserable and making everyone around you miserable. Even when the results are no where near what you desire. Just keep forcing yourself to do more, do it faster, and never stop.

Let’s not forget all the shaming of those who don’t feel inspired to take action.

By comparison, the intuitive entrepreneur can continue to generate a flow of ideas, while honing their ability to sense which ideas are theirs to act upon. Which ideas feel good and have a positive energy to them? Which ideas do you find yourself acting on with ease and joy? Which tasks have you almost completed while contemplating the idea?

This is a more feminine approach to life, but it also preserves our energy for important things (not just our business), and makes our work more enjoyable. Taking action in this way feels good, productive, positive, and meaningful. No flailing or burning out. Just ease, flow, and a deeper connection with our own sense of purpose which brings more energy back into our experience.

Allowing Inspiration Creates More Ease and Flow

For me, who tends toward overwork when I’m not consciously aware, I have noticed that really feeling into an idea helps me determine if it’s right for me. Blog posts area a great example, and a reason why I don’t post daily.

When the inspiration is real, it’s not just excitement I feel but also the powerful energy that comes with it. I’ve learned to let go of the interesting ideas that didn’t have that underlying positive energy, knowing they are meant for someone else.

For some of you, that underlying positive energy might be anger. When you have felt helpless and depressed for a while, anger is a step up the vibrational scale and feels like relief.

Multimillionaire author, musician, and founder of New World Library, Marc Allen, talks about not working on Sundays or Mondays (Moon Days). At all. Working only after 1pm Pacific Tuesday through Friday, and half-time on Saturday. Allowing himself to relax more, watching clouds go by. Great ideas come to Marc when he’s relaxed. (BTW, this is true for all of us.) Songs compose themselves. Book ideas float to top of mind. When it is time to take action, he feels more in the flow of life. In his Millionaire Course Workshop (3CD set), Marc gives further details on how entrepreneurs can support themselves in the process of growing their businesses.

Inspiration vs. Getting Stuff Done

Sure, Nancy, this all sounds great…but what about the stuff that just has to get done? I’m not inspired to sweep the floor and take the garbage out, but it’s gotta get done!

For the things that just have to get done, all entrepreneurs have the choice to do the work themselves, or hire someone else. Yes, there ARE people who find cleaning inspirational and offer those services. Yes, there are people inspired to do the work that does not inspire you!

When I first started my design business in 1994, I convinced myself I couldn’t afford an accountant. That was, until it took me 20 hrs to calculate my quarterly tax estimate and I still wasn’t sure which of the 3 numbers I came up with was correct! That experience left me stressed, tired, and frustrated.

I then hired an accountant who cost me one billable hour (19 less than I had spent, on my own) to come up with the correct number. That’s when I learned that it’s worth hiring others to get some things done. (She’s still my CPA and I rave about her!) Even if I don’t mind doing the work, like accounting, I’d rather pay my CPA to do it faster and better. Hiring others to complete work that is not inspiring to me frees me to focus on what matters in both my business and life.

There is ample ROI (Return on Investment) for hiring others to take your (uninspired) actions which need to get done so you have time and energy to act on your own inspirations.

What do you think? Share your thoughts, questions, and experiences in the comments below.

Image credit: Barry-Jansson & Associates,
using image from CHOREOGRAPH

 

Getting the Most from Business Advice

Business advice cloud

I’ve been inspired to share this insight with you today.

You have probably noticed that I don’t write blog posts every day, every week or even every month. There is an important reason for this beyond the fact that there are already a myriad of free resources on this site. I used to write more often, and all of it is available in the archives, but I’ve learned the importance of only taking inspired action. In the meantime, I remain quiet to become aware and allow my intuition to show me when it’s time to take the action of sharing insights.

Let’s back up a moment and look at thoughts and actions from a vibrational point of view.

Everything we perceive starts first as pure consciousness—as a thought that may eventually become more thought, word, energy, or inspire actions. Pure consciousness is formless and ever-present, ready to respond and be transformed by our energy. Since we live in a vibrational universe (yes, that includes the full spectrum of sounds we can hear as well as those we cannot), the vibration or resonance of the formless consciousness has a direct effect on the resulting thoughts, words, energy or actions. Furthermore, our beliefs are additional filters through which the pure consciousness passes on its way to generating an effect.

Therefore, it doesn’t matter if you take the same actions as other people, your results will reflect the consciousness you are flowing.

For instance, a belief that certain clients are always difficult will skew pure consciousness on its way to effecting new thoughts, words, energy or actions related to acquiring new clients or managing existing clients. No matter what actions you take they will result in you experiencing those certain clients as difficult. It must, because the lens through which you are perceiving consciousness is directing it to be so. Law of Attraction is always vibrationally lining us up with our consciousness so that we prove our beliefs as *right*. Until we change our beliefs and the consciousness we are flowing, nothing else will change.

Seems like wherever you turn, there are people dishing out one-size-fits-all business advice based on their point of view or what worked for them (or others) in the past. Everyone has an opinion on how you should run your business. This is beyond crazy-making for business owners who want to find the right solutions. What worked for one person at one time in their life may not work for another person, or even the SAME person at a different point in their life. Why is that? Because the vast majority of business advice is offered with little, if any, attention paid to the consciousness that accompanies their point of view or experience.

Even if it makes absolutely NO sense for your business or for you as the business owner! Taking action is so much less important than being aware of and conscious of the energy you are flowing.

Andrew Carnegie, once the richest industrialist in 1900s America and the man who inspired Napolean Hill to write his powerful book, Think and Grow Rich, understood this important nuance. Andrew, along with his cousins, was first taught this concept by his Uncle in his native Scotland. On his way to building some of the largest and most profitable companies in his time, Andrew asked questions and listened to answers, but he never took action unless it felt right to him. Even if everyone else was doing it, Andrew took the time to become aware of his own thoughts and feelings, to listen to his intuition, and only take inspired actions on any decision.

There are a few people who truly understand this, and those are the people who do not give out one-size-fits all advice. Not everyone who is currently in business is emotionally, physically, or spiritually prepared to receive this information. Those folks may need to live more life before their own consciousness is ready for the next step. In the meantime, they will read or listen to the surface words and never understand the profound underlying teachings.

Fortunately, if you are reading this blog post, you have a leg up on the majority! Here are 3 simple steps to invest your time and attention so you may begin to do to get the most from any business advice:

1. Start with Awareness Awareness is a form of pure consciousness and it has amazing healing powers. Choosing to become aware of a story we are telling, or a feeling inside of us (even when we cannot attach words to it), or an action we are taking can help us see what is working and what is not working for our lives and business. In order to become aware, you must first be willing to be quiet. Be silent in the stillness, and just notice what you become aware of. That’s it. No judgements. No actions. Just awareness. Incredibly powerful!

So many people are overwhelmed with the daily details of life that they think taking time to be quiet and aware is a waste or unproductive use of time. Nothing could be further from the truth! Those are the people who are forever on a rat-wheel and never able to move beyond. Invest the time in your own quiet awareness, and you’ll see your intuition blossom as you start to see your situation from an entirely new perspective*. Solutions will present themselves, and struggle will become a forgotten habit.

*Don’t be surprised when you begin to realize that every life and business dilemma is an opportunity for spiritual growth. Not religious growth – spiritual growth, growing your own consciousness, and becoming a better version of you.

2. Let intuition guide you Once awareness has opened the door to possibilities, your intuition will begin quietly pointing you toward the best solutions for you. Not the best solutions for everyone. Not even the best solutions for others in your area. Your intuition is your personal guidance, meant only for you. Listen to it and follow it, and it will reward you every time!

3. Follow the inspiration With your awareness and intuition in place, you will start to notice when an idea feels really good to you. Only take actions that feel good to you. I don’t mean good for a few minutes, then irritating or like pulling teeth the rest of the time. I mean actions that feel light and easy to you the entire way. That emotional guidance is telling you that is the direction for you to go. It might not be the right direction for everyone, but the light and easy feeling is an indication that it is right for you.

Some people will think that you are crazy for following your own intuition. Let them. They need to mind their own vibrational guidance, and let you mind yours.

Taking action when something does not feel good usually means that you are trying to force an outcome. Your consciousness is not aligned with the action, which is why it doesn’t feel good. No good result will come of effort taken that doesn’t feel good in your heart. However, recognizing and being aware when it doesn’t feel good to you is powerful information for making decisions moving forward.

With these three steps in place, if anyone offers you business advice, you will know if it’s right for you. It’s OK to take a pass. (Just like the old adage, take what resonates and leave the rest.) It’s best to follow the advice that is aligned with your intuition and inspiration. Read that last sentence again, because it’s really the only one-size-fits-all business advice that’s worth following.

What have your life and business experiences shown you about getting the most from business advice? Share your thoughts and comments below.

 

Image: http://worditout.com/discover-word-clouds

It All Started with My Crockpot

I swear it was the Crockpot that started it all!!!

a170holidayglowTwo weeks ago, I thought momentarily about decorating my house for the holidays, but I just couldn’t do it. I wasn’t *feeling it*. No energy. No desire. No inspiration. I don’t know why, but I felt this way last year, too.

Every time I thought about it, I just felt, “Nah…”

Both this year and last, I just made a decision to be OK with not decorating and feeling totally uninspired about the holidays. I let go of expectations and demands that no longer fit.

Of course, last year, after making peace I found myself spontaneously inspired to decorate anyway a few weeks before Christmas.

Making peace can have that affect. It’s OK if you don’t, and it’s OK if you do…so either way, whatever actions you take are more likely to be from a place of inspiration rather than *shoulds*.

And the same thing happened this year. Today, in fact! Readers of this blog know I’ve written a lot about inspired action. What happened today was clearly inspired action! When I get down to it, though, it actually started earlier in the week with my Crockpot.

On Tuesday, I started reminiscing about years past when I’ve baked liqueur cakes (Grand Marnier, Rum, Amaretto, Kahlua, etc.) for the holidays. The more I thought about them, more I kept thinking about them. Law of attraction just kept bringing me more of the same thoughts…while making me hungry for a liqueur cake…the kind soaked in a butter rum sauce or amaretto syrup. Being that I don’t drink alcohol (doesn’t taste good to me and I don’t like hangovers), my alcohol stays securely in the cupboard unless there is a cake to be baked.

By Thursday, I was on an obsessive roll with the liqueur cake idea at the same time that I wasn’t feeling the love for the work involved. I just wasn’t getting a “Hell, YES!”…that was, until, I remembered my Crockpot! I have a special insert pan that lets me bake bread and cakes inside my crockpot. Immediately, I grabbed my cookbook and located a suitable pound cake recipe that I could poke holes into so it could soak up the buttered rum. Mmmmmmm….

I looked at my watch. I had about 30 minutes before my next Quantum MasterMind call, and I suddenly felt *sparked*: That burst of energy that coincides with an inspired idea! I was primed for inspired action. In less than 3 minutes, I had the crockpot, all the ingredients, and the cookbook on my counter. Twenty minutes later, I had the cake batter in the crockpot, set the temperature to high, and began cleaning up the kitchen.

By the time that Quantum Mastermind call was done, so was my cake! I poked holes all over the cake, and while it was still piping hot,  I quickly melted the butter and sugar together, then stirred in the rum and nutmeg. The sweet warm liquid was poured over the hot cake so it could soak it all up. Within two hours of my call finishing, I was sitting down enjoying a piece of delicious, warm Butter Rum cake with a bit of whipped cream…

And by end of day on Saturday, two days later, my Christmas tree was up, and my whole house was fully decorated for the holidays! And believe me, no one is more surprised about this chain of events than me! Seriously. Two weeks ago, and even two days ago, I would never have predicted that my Crockpot would lead me gently toward inspired action on getting into the holiday spirit.

Sometimes inspired action happens in a moment, and sometimes it creeps up on you like that! It starts out on Tuesday with a random thought that snowballs, and by Saturday, you don’t know what came over you. When you’re in the Vortex taking action, you’ll not only accomplish everything much faster, but the results will be far better.

Is there something that you feel you should do for your business, but you haven’t been *feeling it*? At some point, every business owner experiences this. From my experience, the best ting you can do is make peace with not feeling it, let go of expectations, and take no action except from the place of, “OH, YES!”. Know that when, or IF, you do finally feel inspired to take action, the results will always turn out so much better than if you had forced yourself when you weren’t feeling any inspiration.

Now it’s your turn: Do you have a surprising story of inspired action? Share with us below…

Intuition and Inspired Action: Your Greatest Business Resources

Intuition is that quiet voice inside of you that shows you the best direction for you. Everyone receives their intuition in different ways and places in their body. I receive my intuition in my mind as a thought or picture coupled with a feeling in my lower throat/upper chest area. When I pay attention to it, there is a feeling of ‘yes, that’s right”–a *knowing* that this is the right action for me. Do you know where you receive your intuitive guidance?

Regardless of your religious or spiritual background, it cannot be denied that intuitive guidance carries with it a deeper wisdom and powerful energy. Often what you receive feels right to you, but very *off* or strange to others. I’ve come to realize this is because the guidance is meant specifically for us”not for anyone around us. There is no use asking others whether our intuitive guidance is right or not. Bottom line: If it *feels right* to us, then *it is right* for us and meant for us to follow. If you are in doubt, then it doesn’t feel right and probably isn’t intuition.

When you listen to and act on your intuition, that is what is known as *Inspired Action*. This type of action comes with it’s own surge of energy, and following it brings far greater results with less effort than uninspired action. In comparison, any other type of action is, essentially, busy work. No other human can give you or take away what intuition provides. Make a habit of only taking inspired action, and you’ll be amazed how much easier it is to grow your business and succeed!

By default, following intuitive guidance feels really good. When you are giving your attention to thoughts and actions that feel good, the Law of Attraction mirrors back to you what you are focusing upon”in this case, more experiences and opportunities that feel good!

Last year, I had the privilege of coaching a gal whose small business was not doing as well as she had been hoping. She loved the work and enjoyed working with the few clients she had at the time. On the surface, she seemed to be taking all the appropriate actions to grow her business. She had a detailed business plan and was executing her marketing plan like a pro…but nothing was working. At the point where I was speaking to her, she was considering closing her business and feeling very conflicted about the idea.

In talking to her initially, she speculated it was the area of the country she lived in or just the *economy* that was preventing her from growing her business. All the reasons she had for the business not working were external, intuitively I could feel there was much more going on internally that needed to be discussed. I know that external conditions rarely have an affect on a situation unless you internally give them the power to do so.

It turned out that a well-meaning relative with an MBA was constantly criticizing every area of her business and this triggered her to second-guess her business decisions. She never gave herself a chance to follow-through on her ideas. This relative would convince her to abort her plans and only follow their suggestions, which didn’t feel right to her at all. My client was giving more attention to her relative’s opinions than to her own intuition. No wonder her business was floundering!

So, I explained to her the way our intuition works, helped her discover how hers showed up, and encouraged her to follow that guidance before she followed anyone else’s suggestions. The shift was almost immediate! Within a week, she regained enthusiasm for her business, was re-energized, got clear on what she really wanted and took inspired actions. When the relative would chime in, she’d say, “thanks, I’ll think about it…” then refocus her attention on what felt best to her. Eventually, that relative stopped giving unwanted business advice.

A year later, you would not recognize her business! She’s dropped services that she didn’t enjoy providing, she’s changed her website and refocused her offerings in the direction that thrills her. Her business has grown exponentially, AND…most importantly, I think, she’s loving every bit of that business expansion.

When you give your intuition your undivided attention, follow what feels right to you and only take inspired action in your business, you turbo-charge your business for success!

How do you use your intuition and inspired action as business resources?

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