What is inspiration? The dictionary defines inspiration as “arousal of the mind to special or unusual activity.” Inspiration can also be defined in a religious sense as divine guidance, or it can be described as a sudden flash of intuition. Inspiration can be a powerful motivational tool. How can this elusive state of mind make a difference in our everyday lives?
Origins of Inspiration
Parents become our prime motivators starting in infancy. Rewards and punishments are handed out to encourage positive behavior and limit undesirable responses. These actions help shape our personalities and form our earliest motivations. Parents may not always be successful in inspiring exactly what they want in their offspring, but knowing how to elicit a desired action is very useful knowledge.
Subsequently, humans at their very core are motivated by inspiration. Knowing how to tap into this fundamental response can help you or your organization achieve your goals.
Inspiration at Work
Businesses are always seeking ways to inspire and motivate employees to perform at their best. However, what inspires one person will not always work for the next. Good employers understand that it may take a combination of factors to create high levels of motivation. External factors such as compensation, promotions, or tangible symbols like a fancy office can be motivational. Internal factors that include personal work ethic or love of one’s profession are just as important to recognize.
Based upon these internal and external factors, you can capitalize upon the power of symbols and images to motivate your team. Understand what drives them – whether it is helping the community at large or achieving a promotion – and use images that literally symbolize their motivation.
Tap into Inspiration
When it comes to choosing stationery that will help you tap into the power of inspiration, consider the big picture. What are the overall goals of your organization? Your mission, values and vision for the future may not be easily condensed into a single thought or image, but finding symbols that help express these ideas is a good start.
If you want to inspire your company or non-profit organization to soar for the sky, then paint that image for your staff with stationery that features the sky and white clouds. This blank slate can send many different messages – but the most important one it will reinforce will be reaching for the sky.
Other choices could include a more specific image that represents your collective challenges. Using a graphic that shows a man’s profile climbing a steep mountain will be easily understood to represent those challenges. You can use this stationery to inspire your team to overcome all challenges to reach the pinnacle of your goals.
Or perhaps a beautiful image of two dolphins gracefully soaring out of the ocean will send just the uplifting thought you desire.
No matter how inspiration is defined, there is no doubt it exists, and this motivation can be put to good use to help achieve goals for any group of people.