Today’s guest is a new buddy of mine and I’m excited to share with all of you her fantastic post. Please welcome Stephanie Noel.
First I would like to thank T.B. for the opportunity to guest post on her blog. She’s a great writer and I feel honored to be featured on her blog. When she told me I could write about anything, I immediately knew what I wanted to discuss: inspiration.
Now, I don’t mean inspiration as in “waiting for inspiration.” I don’t mean the elusive muses people wait for or go after with a club to drag it back to their desks (but if you’d like to hear about that I strongly suggest you check out Elizabeth Gilbert’s TED talk.) What I want to talk about is how other people can inspire us and how we can inspire others.
Two years ago I met an awesome girl called Christine. Back then, she still working a job she didn’t like. She wasn’t unhappy, but she wasn’t happy either. A few months later, after much cogitation and countless hours spent planning, she took a risk. She quit her day job to follow her passion and become a yoga instructor and a massage therapist. When I heard about it, I was amazed. It took a lot of courage to do such a thing and I wondered if I would ever have the guts to do something similar.
Christine truly inspired me and encouraged me to follow my own dreams, if on a much safer scale. When I told her, she was embarrassed. She was grateful for my kind words, but felt like she didn’t deserve them. I didn’t understand it. Didn’t she realize she’d done what most of us didn’t dare do? It was only natural that I see her as an inspiration. She didn’t seem convinced but thanked me anyway.
Flash forward a year.
Last December, I recognized that my full-time job was preventing me from taking the next step in my career. More importantly, it was driving me nuts. I was depressed and angry all the time. So I took a decision. I left my very stable job to take a part-time contract that would allow me to focus on my current WIP. I took a calculated risk to follow my passion. If Christine had done it, albeit in a slightly different field, why couldn’t I?
I had expected my coworkers not to understand why I would throw away such a good job to choose something so unstable. Their response baffled me. Most congratulated me and some even told me they envied me. All told me they knew I would succeed and that they would definitely read my books. The best, however, was yet to come.
One evening, I was chatting with a colleague about my new life when he told me “You’re my idol. It takes balls to do what you did. You’re an inspiration.” For the first time, I understood my friend Christine’s reaction. I was grateful for the flattering words, but I didn’t feel like I deserved them. I had only taken the next logical step! Receiving praises for doing what was right for me was strange, indeed.
You’re probably wondering where I’m going with this. What I wanted to demonstrate here is that by following your dreams (such an overused phrase, I know,) you have the power to inspire others. I was lucky to get such a good reaction when I took my decision, but most of the time, people will hit a wall of disapproval when they decide to take the unbeaten path. I want to urge you to be yourself and to follow your calling despite what other people say. Chances are you will be a source of inspiration for the people around you. Chances are they will accomplish things they never thought they would, all because you chose to be yourself.
Don’t give up. You’re someone’s inspiration.
About the Author:
Born French-Canadian, Stephanie is an incurable anglophile. Her travels have taken her to more than twenty countries all over the world, including a five year stay in Japan. She now lives in Montreal where she writes short fiction and full length novels. She is the author of the literary blog A Truth Universally Acknowledged as well of the facebook page of the same name.