In-Spiration Challenge: Learning to Inspire Yourself

To start with, this post is a little late and we would like to apologize for that. Now that we are a month into the Write Mind Media brand, we are experimenting with the order of our usual posts to make a greater impact on our readers. Once we have a set schedule, we will post it here.

Now, for our challenge, which we are going to try on Mondays for now to inspire the rest of the week.

Our challenge this week is…. Be Your Own Inspiration.

We’re challenging you to be your own inspiration because if you cannot inspire yourself, you will never be able to inspire others. This could be through your own quotes and writings or look back on your own experiences. Look back on your life. What did you do that shook you to your core and shaped you into what you are today? Did you fail, but were persistent enough to get back up and follow your beaten path?

By reflecting on your own life you can find pearls of inspiration that can touch the lives of your audience just as they affected your life. We are daring you to take that into your own hands. Own it. Take pride in it. See these moments for the inspiring pieces of the story they are and allow it to shake the world.

So, write your own inspirational quote. Write a short memoir even if you are the only one reading it. Inspire yourself. You may be surprised by how much it will energize you to succeed in the future.

Then share them with us. Write Mind Media is always looking for inspiring quotes and stories to feature on our blog. We look forward to hearing from you.

Our In-spiration Challenges are meant to push the limits of our followers so they can inspire themselves as entrepreneurs and human beings.

What is “In-spiration?” In addition to creating custom content for entrepreneurs, Write Mind Media LLC is dedicated to helping business professionals create inspiring brands.  We help them to become better business professionals and human beings through inspirational quotes, an in-depth look at how these ideas can help you in business, and developing weekly challenges to push our readers to do better.

How to Network: The Foundation of Influence

Courtesy of Kaboompics

In addition to writing and marketing, I have also worked in entertainment and if there is one thing that I have learned in that experience, it is that networking is everything. Knowing people and collaborating with them not only gives you new opportunities, but it also lays the foundation for future followers.

However, not everyone understands the importance of networking or are too shy to follow through with conversation. That is why we are giving you a few tips on how you can improve your networking skills

1. “You know, sometimes all you need is 20 seconds of insane courage, just literally 20 seconds of embarrassing bravery, and I promise you something great will come of it.”-Benjamin Mee, “We Bought a Zoo”

 

Courtesy of Kaboompics

When I met Elie Wiesel for the first time, it was because of 20 seconds of insane courage. The goes with meeting people like President Muhammad Nasheed of the Maldives and interviewing Piper Kerman, the author of the book “Orange is the New Black.” If you see someone that you admire or who you have always wanted to work with, 20 seconds is all you need to say “hello” and make a first impression. Don’t let those 20 seconds leaves you in the dust.

Bonus Tip: If you’re really nervous meeting new people, have a go-to friend that will help introduce you and make sure the conversation doesn’t die. Think of “How I Met Your Mother” and Barney’s favorite game “Have…You Met Ted.”

2. Speaking of First Impressions

Always be ready for a good first impression. If you were to see me out, working on these blog posts, you would see me in a nice outfit (normally a nice blouse, heels, and my Lucky Brand jeans that I swear by) with my hair and makeup done. You only ever get one shot at making a first impression and you never know when it might happen. It might be at a conference or it might be at Starbucks in the morning. Always be ready and waiting to make that next, crucial connection.

Bonus Tip: Invest in a conversation piece. With a simple outfit, they grab attention and can start conversations. Mine is a pair of saddle shoes that no one can believe I got from Payless.

3. “Let Me Give You My Card.”

There is nothing more important than making sure that you leave a conversation with a person’s card and they leave with yours. Invest in nice, eye-catching business cards that stand out amongst the 50 other cards people get at conferences. Also, don’t forget to send a quick “Nice Meeting You” email after big events to keep the conversation going.

Bonus Tip: Don’t be afraid to get creative. Horror filmmaker, Lynne Hansen, leaves “I Make Films Like a Girl” buttons at every film festival she attends. By the end of the festival, everyone knows her name.
Courtesy of “I Make Films Like a Girl” Facebook page

4. Have to Go to Conversations Starts

Small talk sometimes is a good way to start a conversation, but are cliché and die off quickly. Prep some interesting topics in your field that will not only make you memorable but will also impress the other side of the conversation. If they think you know what you’re talking about, they will be more likely to come to you in a pinch.

Bonus Tip: Want to speak with the expert from that panel you loved? Don’t be afraid to wait on the edges after to speak one-on-one with them and ask in-depth questions about the topic. It shows your initiative.

 

IN-Spiration: Self-Evolving Must Always Follow Self-Reflection

Yesterday, we explored the importance of self-reflection. Why is it important to regularly examine your life? Today, we will seek inspiration from a 19th-century educator on the importance of constantly be evolving yourself.

“Be yourself, but always your better self.” – Karl G. Maeser

We live in an age where anyone can be anything. Individuality is encouraged. Being innovative can lead you to great success and influence. However, one must also approach this with caution because it can possibly restrict your self-reflection.

How does it do this? Because if you believe the habit is what makes you YOU,  you will be more likely to not change it.

When you develop your own style or way of doing things, it is YOUR’S. You’ll defend it. If you do something that is against the grain of society, you might say it is a part of what makes you unique. You’re a rebel. No rules are good rules. When that leads you to get stuck, though, you need to look into your own habits first. It doesn’t matter if it’s part of your aesthetic. If it doesn’t work, it needs to go.

Let’s look at Netflix, for example. The multi-billion dollar company started as nothing more than a Blockbuster* your could use from your living room. One click of a button and the company would send your favorite movies straight to your mailbox. When they started their streaming service, they tried to separate it from the Netflix name, calling it Qwikster and upping the fee for the service. It backfired on them.

Netflix quickly realized that they couldn’t keep their old way of business and still succeed with Qwikster. They had to completely change. So,  they started offering more streaming under the Netflix name. However, It wasn’t until they completely changed and became a production company in their own right that the company found its true success. Without that transformation, we would never have shows like “House of Cards,” “Orange is the New Black,” or “Stranger Things.”

Self-reflection, whether in business or your personal life, can only be successful if it leaves to personal evolution. So, take your moment. Breathe and reflect on your life. Then, get to work.

Now, it’s time to decipher Maeser’s quote for yourself. What do you think he means? Is being yourself hinder you from being a better form of yourself? Let us know in the comments below or leave a comment on our Facebook page and Twitter.

What is “In-spiration?” In addition to creating custom content for entrepreneurs, Write Mind Media LLC is dedicated to helping business professionals create inspiring brands.  We help them to become better business professionals and human beings through inspirational quotes, an in-depth look at how these ideas can help you in business, and developing weekly challenges to push our readers to do better.

*Blockbuster, in case you are too young to remember, was a video rental store that was extremely popular in the 90’s, but died out in the early 2000’s. At least 10 are still open in the United States today.

Motivational Monday: Channeling the Light of Maya Angelou

Today’s motivation comes from the life of a favorite poet of mine: Maya Angelou.

About Angelou’s Life

While she is known for her book “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” she was also known as a singer, actor, director, and civil rights advocate. In fact, she was a good friend to civil rights leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr.

Most importantly, she was a spiritual leader to many through her words and no-nonsense attitude. She forbade curse words in her home due to the power the words could have. Leaders of peace like Nelson Mandela and President Barack Obama called her a friend. She was truly a “phenomenal woman” as she described in her popular poem.

Photo Courtesy of Maya Angelou’s Facebook Page

Angelou had a difficult childhood, having been sexually assaulted at the age of eight and being mute for several years after the incident. Even then, she knew that her words held the power to change the world. Eventually, she would pen the story for “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.”  The memoir would be what took her from a famous entertainer and activist to a global icon.

What We Can Learn From Maya Angelou

This week, we are focusing on becoming your own inspiration, to use your life as an example of perseverance and success. There are very few people that personify this ideal than Maya Angelou who faced adversity from so many fronts throughout her life as an African American woman.

Even though she has passed on, I doubt that her words will ever be forgotten. They are not unlike the words of Elie Wiesel, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, or Malala Yousafzai. They serve as a testament to a life lived. She learned from her experience, reflected on it, and allowed those lessons to make her a better human being.

As an entrepreneur and as an influencer, you must learn from your own life experiences. What would make your life easier? Think of what inspires you, makes you happy or sad. If YOU don’t ask the questions…someone else will and they will be the ones that inspire the world.

So, follow Maya Angelou’s advice.  “Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” Find your light so you may inspire others to do the same.

IN-Spiration: Examining Life and How You Can Start to Thrive

It’s almost been a month on this blog! Can you believe it? Throughout our first month, we have explored how failing can lead to greater success, the power of giving back, and how creativity can revitalize your work environment. Now, we want to focus on the most important part of being an influencer: YOU!

To kick off the week, we are getting IN-Spired to self-reflect with Socrates.

“The unexamined life is not worth living.” 
― Socrates

What does it mean to examine life? Is looking at which habits work and don’t work in your life? Could it be meditating on your place in the universe? Perhaps it’s cleaning up your social media page?

This quote brings up hundreds of questions. However, the core of Socrates’s statement is simple. If you don’t reflect on your life then it’s all for nothing.

Millions of people around the world work hard to survive, to earn just enough to build a safe life. They don’t dare to fail. There’s no jumping outside the box. It’s just existence.

That’s not living.

Life is meant to be explored and understood. If we didn’t reflect on why we were here or how we can make the world better then what is the point of humanity? What’s the point of consciousness?

Okay, that got very deep. Most people are not philosophers. The same, though, can be applied to everyday life. Examine why you want the new job or if the person you’re with actually makes you happy. If you don’t take the time to ask yourself these questions, then you might not be living your life to the fullest. You’re just existing.

Don’t exist. Live. Thive. Examine Life.

Now, it’s time to examine Socrates’s words for yourself. What do you think? How does examining life effect your life? Let us know in our comments below or on our Facebook page.

What is “In-spiration?” In addition to creating custom content for entrepreneurs, Write Mind Media LLC is dedicated to helping business professionals create inspiring brands.  We help them to become better business professionals and human beings through inspirational quotes, an in-depth look at how these ideas can help you in business, and developing weekly challenges to push our readers to do better.

IN-spiration: One Word of Truth

Today’s IN-spiration comes from the Russian Writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn and is a quote that I have held dear since high school.

“One Word of Truth Will Outweigh the Whole World” — Alexander Solzhenitsyn

When I first read this quote, it made perfect sense to me while confusing so many others. It is the belief that the right word in the perfect place can change the world.

Since their creation, words have always had power over humanity. They have freed entire countries from tyranny and condemned criminals to death. Words can give hope or cause despair. All you need is to know how to use them.

As entrepreneurs, words can help convey a certain image to your audience. Perhaps, they can be used to help energize your team towards success.

The key to creating powerful words to influence your audience is to be sure there is truth behind them. You can use your words to lie and manipulate, but eventually, it will only lead to despair and mistrust. If you incorporate your truth into your company’s content, audiences will feel closer to you as a person. It gives your service, product, or story a face to trust.

Look at Solzhenitsyn. A Russian writer during the reign of the Soviet Union, Solzhenitsyn was an outspoken critic and wrote personal accounts of the mistreatment his people faced. It was his truths that helped bring to life the experience of Soviet prison camps so those responsible were seen for what they were.

Now, I’m not saying that your marketing campaign must defy regimes and change history. However, they do need to make an impact. Every word must count. After all, one word wasted can always tip the scales from your favor.

 

What do you think? Can words really have such an impact in the world of viral videos and Snapchat? Is there a way that your words aren’t being used to their fullest potential? Let us know in the comments below!

What is “In-spiration?” In addition to creating custom content for entrepreneurs, Write Mind Media LLC is dedicated to helping business professionals create inspiring brands.  We help them to become better business professionals and human beings through inspirational quotes, an in-depth look at how these ideas can help you in business, and developing weekly challenges to push our readers to do better.