If you want to be inspired, hang around these people

If you want to be inspired, hang around these people

Whether we will it or not, the environment we surround ourselves with, the peers we connect with, heavily influence our creativity, productivity, and attitude. You’ve probably already been told a million times who NOT to hang out with, but as a creative who desires to be inspired for their art, who do you hang out with?

  • Someone who has had an adventure

This is the person who perhaps lived in another city for a time or went on a hike or vacationed to a foreign country or studied abroad or pursued a business endeavor or what-have-you. Even if their adventure wasn’t particularly successful, this is someone who isn’t afraid of trying new things, finds excitement in the unfamiliar, and can be some strong motivation for you to go on your own adventures.

  • Someone who is fiercely independent

Hanging around people who won’t take action to move out of mom and dad’s house is going to hold you back. An independent person who has had experiences will influence you to make some confident, independent decisions, perhaps the same ones that helped them get out the door.

  • Someone who knows people

It’s not unwise to actively seek out people who have valuable connections that can benefit your career. This is someone who is probably more social than you, someone who makes friends easily and is likable, which will make you likable. Those who work in creative industries know that connections are the life of artistic success.

  • Someone who has strong opinions

We don’t usually care for opinionated people, as they can at times be annoyingly stubborn and arrogant. However, someone with strong opinions is a greater influence than someone who is ambiguous and indifferent. They are much more likely to be listened to, and they emit a personality of self-confidence and morality. They can be the person who points out flaws in your plans that you are otherwise biased about and provide constructive criticism, which could help you make smarter decisions. It must be someone you trust very deeply, else their opinions will go unheeded.

  • Someone who is moved by aesthetic experiences

People who admire and appreciate beauty in different forms are extraordinarily deep and creative individuals who are not only pleasing to be around but are contagious of passion. Hang around someone who notices the architectural details of an old house or who wonders at the natural causes of a geographical monument or who enjoys breaking down the aspects of a good film.

  • Someone who participates in a physical hobby

Even if it’s just working out, a person who spends time being active for fun as well as health is overall a more productive, more positive person. And they may influence you to take up a sport as well.

  • Someone who is not affected by chaos

NOT someone who creates chaos (no one needs that in their life). This is someone who is strong-willed and is not easily upset by unstable environments. Whether they truly are unmoved or are just extremely good at faking calm, they’ll keep your feet on the ground in stressful situations.

  • Someone who is not easily offended

Name-calling, stereotyping, and difference of opinions goes over this person’s head. They hold their own beliefs and standards while not pushing it on others, at the same time being unconcerned with what others think.

  • Someone who is exceptionally intuitive

They can be a little scary, but you’ll appreciate having someone in your life who can read you and know what’s on your mind before you even speak. They’re like a psychic without all the weird supernatural stuff. They just know you that well. Hang around someone who knows how to point out what needs pointing out as well as holding back for the sake of better timing.


Surrounding ourselves with the right formula of environment can make or break a career, can make us a positive or negative person, and can open up opportunities that wouldn’t have been available in a different place. The people, most of all, influence the strongest. If your crowd is not inspiring you, then it’s time to make some new friends.


Your 3 Verbs

Your 3 Verbs

I’ve talked before in a past post on how to create a personal mission statement for yourself. Part of that process includes choosing three verbs that are most meaningful and exciting to you, three verbs that you believe will help you accomplish your core value. I shared that my three verbs came out to be Encourage, Inspire, and Support. I believe that these verbs, these actions, will help me achieve spreading my core value of Influence.

What do these verbs mean, and what do they mean to me or you? Verbs are a specific form of action. By choosing three certain verbs, they represent specific actions that we choose to focus on. Focusing our actions gives way to better and faster results. It achieves more specific results. If you’re determined to accomplish a certain goal, or simply spread a certain value, it is highly effective to hone your actions.

So what are your three verbs? If you don’t know what your core value is, more than likely choosing three verbs that inspire you the most will shine some light on it. It helps to begin with a big master list of verbs to pick from (courtesy of “The Path” by Laurie Beth Jones):

accomplish acquire administer adopt advance affect
affirm alleviate amplify appreciate ascend associate believe bestow brighten build
collect combine command
compel compete complete compliment compose conceive

confirm connect consider construct contact continue counsel create
decide defend delight deliver demonstrate devise
direct discover discuss distribute draft
drive educate
elect embrace encourage endow engage engineer enhance enlighten

enlist enliven entertain enthuse envision evaluate excite explore express extend facilitate finance forgive foster franchise further gather generate give
identify ignite illuminate implement improve improvise inspire

integrate involve
master mature measure mediate model
mold motivate move negotiate nurture
open organize participate pass perform persuade play
possess practice praise prepare present produce

progress promise promote provide realize receive reclaim reduce
reflect reform regard
rely remember renew resonate respect restore return
revise sacrifice safeguard satisfy

stand summon support surrender sustain
trade translate travel understand uphold
utilize validate value venture verbalize volunteer work worship write


If it’s hard to pick three, start with nine, and then eliminate. Give it a try 🙂

5 Inspiring Dream Followers

We all have our inspirers, the people we admire who influence us to keep going at our dreams, even when they seem impossible. These five people (four of them writers, what can I say?) inspire me from either their personal stories or what they managed to accomplish.

1. J. K. Rowling


I have to confess, I’ve never read or watched any Harry Potter books or movies. Truth is, they have never appealed to me. Before you hate on me now, I do admire the author. I especially admire her story. The first Harry Potter being a saving grace kind of book for her (she was on the brink of poverty) is inspiring enough, but the fact that it was rejected 11 times before someone decided to say yes is an inspiring tale of its own. I like to imagine all those editors who said no kicking themselves to this day. Whenever I think about my own writing, and the fear of rejections, her story gives me courage.

2. Kathryn Stockett


If Rowling’s story of persistence in the face of rejection is inspiring, then Kathryn Stockett’s story is even more so. Her successful novel The Help was rejected 60 times before she got representation. Within a few years it was a bestseller and a movie. And it was her debut!

3. Stephen King


Another 60 rejections receiver, he just refused to give up on writing, despite poverty clinging to him. I’ve read his nonfiction On Writing, in which he explained how he pushed through: “By the time I was 14…the nail in my wall would no longer support the weight of the rejection slips impaled upon it. I replaced the nail with a spike and kept on writing.” That’s how, he kept on writing.

4. Martha Stewart


The face of cooking, crafts, and DIY, her stint in prison from a stock scandal looked like the end of her career, but she bounced back beautifully, so much so that I don’t recall remembering her absence.

5. Rachel Hartman


I came across the book Seraphina in Barnes & Noble and looked it up to see if it was any good. Reviews were great, and when I discovered that it was this new and unknown author’s debut, I felt a deep connection and bought it. I have since now finished the second book, Shadow Scale, and I highly recommend these novels. Hartman enchanted me with her twist-on-dragons story, and it showed me that you can take old classic elements and give them new life. It was an excellent debut, and I can see this author going far.


Who are the influential dream followers that inspire you?


5 Positive influences on my life

There are a good number of good things that have a positive influence on my life, but there are five particular influences that have a profound effect on me. Not all are people, because even things can profoundly affect you. 

  1. My best friend Jasmine. She is the one person in my life who knows the most about me. I’m not only blessed to have her in my life but also relieved. We both have our troubles and we’re both not afraid to share them with each other, and that makes our relationship so real. She reminds me of who I am, and I always feel a boost.
  2. My brother Stephen. With such a beautiful creative mind like his, ideas and inspiration is endless when I’m with him. Just chatting motivates me to go and create something.
  3. Volunteering at church. Besides the work experience I gain, it’s provided other things I tend to need: things to do, a chance to get out of the house, a productive satisfaction, and comfort.
  4. Back pain (believe it or not). You’re probably wondering, “Huh? How?” Having something to battle and win over each day is like strength training. I can do it, I can do it, I can do it.
  5. Whisper of the Heart, by Hayao Miyazaki. My favorite movie. I could quote this film in my sleep. Whenever I need an artistic boost, I simply pop this in, and inspiration magically returns. 

What are some people or things in your life that have a profound positive influence on you?