Do you ever have those weeks that seem to have a theme? Where everything you watch or read or see almost always seems to be screaming the same message at you? Some people might say that it is because I have this theme on my mind that everywhere I look, I shall see it. Have you ever bought a new car thinking that you never saw many of those on the road, and then everywhere you go, that is the only car you seem to see? Do you think that your brain subconsciously looks out for patterns in things once you obsess for an hour or so about it? Is it in anyway linked to perception? I know I am asking questions that I don't have the answer to and that I haven't researched the answer to and that I may never know the answer to, maybe you know and maybe you can tell me? If you have a theory based on nothing but theory then tell me that too!
Okay, enough of the riddles, lets look at what it is I am ACTUALLY waffling on about, inspiration. I say inspiration but I know that can mean different things to different people but maybe in this post, you will learn a bit about what inspires me and how the last week has been filled with subtle messages that I have picked up.
At the start of the week, I watched a presentation, the presentation included a panel of University alumni. As with any presentation that is being held as a promotional tool (hey look at us, aren't we great), it was the successful alumni that were on the panel, as opposed to those whose lives were meandering along in much the same fashion as they always had. I think maybe they just hadn't been inspired in the same way. It also depends on what we do with that inspiration, whether we shrug it off, embrace it, nurture it or pass it along, we always have a choice. But the one message that I took from these alumni was that they all had aspirations of passing courses with the best grades, distinctions and merits but in the end, the just needed to pass. They focussed on the end goal and did what needed to be done, happy if they achieved said distinctions, merits etc. but happy all the same. It was a means to an end as you will, a stepping stone on the path of their next destination. I say next and not final because I wholeheartedly believe that once you reach that goal, another one will present itself and you start the process again.
I could relate to what they were saying, some may recall that when I went to university to get a degree, it was with the one aim: to have the qualification I needed to be selected to join the voluntary service. I wasn't too concerned about the subject and without having studied Maths or Science at A'level, simply by applying myself, I managed to leave with an hons degree in Applied Physics. I believe that there is more than one way to achieve things in life, and just because you haven't followed a route laid out for you it doesn't by any means mean that you cant still achieve it.
The next sign came in the work I was doing, it gave me the opportunity to see CV's of people who were successful, and the one thing that stood out for me was how few of these had followed a conventional route and had been consistent. People have rich and diverse lives and these lives are also unpredictable, we have to bend with the winds of change (or something like that) and although we may have a diverted route, we can get there whether we fail en route or not.
I managed to get to finish that degree even though I never excelled in GCSE's and I failed two of my three A'levels, I went to college instead to get my university place, and there I studied an extra course which ensured I kept my honours that first year, I wanted to give up when it got hard in year two and I believed wholeheartedly that I wouldn't pass, somehow I did and year three was no easier but I had some faith that I could do it. I aimed to pass and I didn't care too much about the grades. The fact that I did pass and I know how much it took for me to pass, means that I couldn't be prouder of my 2:2.
That seems a lifetime ago now and my dreams have changed but my belief that you can succeed if you are prepared to accept an alternate route there is still as strong. Its why I have such faith in Adult education which in itself shows that, having failed or not reached the goals they wanted to when younger (for whatever reason) they have (as the quote above says) learnt from it and are now more determined. Young people are determined too and I envy those who have always had a clear life path laid out in front of them, but just because you haven't it doesn't mean you cant be just as successful.
The next clue came from Writers! I was reading some interviews with successful writers and they were partly biographical, and it inspired me a lot to as basically, they all said something along the lines of this:
How true a statement is that! Then this morning, I saw this video on Facebook, and its worth listening to all the way through...
I don't think anything should decide our fate except us! Please share your inspirational stories in the comments :D
So this last week was brought to you courtesy of inspiration appearing in all places :D