“Motivation is when you get hold of an idea and carry it through to its conclusion, and inspiration is when an idea gets hold of you and carries you where you are intended to go.” Dr Wayne Dyer

Lately, I’ve been thinking about inspiration and its role in motivation.

Based on my experience, “Motivation” is about finish lines and checklists, the “getting it done” part of life, while “Inspiration” is that spark that comes from your core – it is daring and provocative and full of possibilities.  Without the inspiration created by a link between the task and a larger life purpose, there is no motivation.

My motivational challenges generally start during the hustle of the holidays and continue through the dark, cold days of Winter. I struggle to stay excited about what I’m doing, to focus, to get things done.

On those days where I’m unmotivated, I’ve begun to ask myself:  How can I align the work that needs to be done with my values? How can I create meaning in my projects?  And, that meaning is not always in the work itself, but in the spaces in between. In a recent project, I was reminded that one of my purposes in life is to help others succeed. I can do that by encouraging someone to run their first 5K or by writing a great report with actionable insights. Helping others succeed can provide the inspiration I need to get motivated.

How is your motivation? If it is lacking, have you thought about why? Can you connect your “tasks” with your inner purpose?  Let us know what you think!