Subtle weenie or bolt of lightning? Both are within your reach.

It is not light that we need, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake.
-Frederick Douglass

In a matter of 24 hours, our moods and emotions can fly all across the spectrum… from pure and unadulterated love and affection, to deep sadness and loss of hope, to apathy and aloof nonchalance. We are logical, smart human beings… so where does this fluctuation come from? There aren’t usually that many changes taking place in the real world. Most of these changes come from our reaction and feelings that we place on external factors. We all know that, but how do we conquer these sometimes dampening emotions and keep on our inspired track where progress, happiness and encouraging others is the rule rather than the exception? Don’t get me wrong, I am a feel your emotions deeply kind of girl… but it is the tricky little, inspiration crushing moments that can mean the difference between rockin’ a goal and rockin’ your sweat pants.

Time for some transparency… I am afraid of losing my ability to find inspiration. So what do you do when you can’t find the thing you need? You make it yourself.

My biggest, scariest, most smile killing, couch and cupcake inducing emotion, used to be the feeling that inspiration was rare and hard to come by and that it simply flew in and out of our minds and hearts on a whim. For a long time I convinced myself that inspiration was like lightning. I knew that, in order to find it, I needed to locate a thunderstorm… but even when I found the source of this awesome power, seeing the lightning was random and out of my control. Sitting on a hillside, hoping to see a bolt, much like waiting for someone, something, some place or idea to inspire me, left me feeling like my life’s accomplishments were based on some spark of outside influence. It became a wandering, seeking feeling that I needed to be perpetually staring at the sky, paranoid I would miss the view. In the mean time, I found myself missing out on exciting, creative, real-life opportunities because I was waiting for a flash of lightning-like inspiration to spur me on to do all the things that I knew, deep down, I could be capable of.

When I realized that I was the thunderstorm, I began to understand that I had the option to create my own lightning. 

Winston Churchill said, “You create your universe as you go along.” This type of mindset can sound a little narcissistic. Stay with me here… you can’t be of any use to anyone else, unless you are living and breathing the highest form of who you believe you are capable of becoming. Create, seek, love and nurture all the moments that make you feel alive. Seal them up and store them in your freezer for future use.

When I was driving out to Centennial Airport, heading to one of my last IFR flight lessons before my check ride  (I passed my IFR written exam!!) I was filled with lightning. Bright and bold, ready to strike and light up the sky, I easily learned and sought more understanding during my lesson.

This is in contrast to a few days back when I was a big ole lame mess. Tired and apathetic, I procrastinated and gave in to the negative feedback and pessimistic outlook of others. One of those influences was a negative note here on the blog. I was a little sullen and lacking that lustrous glow of potential and I was waiting on someone else to light me up. Anyone who has the time and need to send negative feedback should get the whole story first, rather than toss out random and hurtful words… Like Taylor Swift said, “why ya gotta be so mean?” 😉 When I realized how silly this was, I had to pull up my boot straps and motivate myself.

Kind of vague, right? Vague sucks. Let’s get specific.

Here’s what I did to get out of my funk:

1) Went to the gym. Physical activity will almost instantly get you out of a bad mood.

2) Worked on the Fly With Amelia Foundation board of directors plan and created an outline for the May 19th event at Wings Over the Rockies.

3) Read a few pages from my oral prep book and realized how much I enjoy precision flight

4) Called a friend to talk about what was new in her life. Turns out she is really happy and that was instant smiles on my part.

5) Took a hot bath and went to bed on time… which meant 9pm. I get up at 3am so it takes an effort to be done with everything that early!

The point is this…when it comes to inspiration, no one is going to inspire you on a consistent basis except for yourself. You’ve got to have a plan for being that charge of energy that ignites the storm, that lifts clouds, crackles and pops with excitement and *change*.

I got an amazing facebook message from my friend Jessie yesterday…

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  • Jessie Louise

    “Miss Amelia. I don’t know when you’ll get this message– but my goodness. I have so few chic friends who have any idea how amazing what we do is. I spent the morning/afternoon flying around Eagle/Leadville/Rifle/Vail– landing on pinnacles, inside bowls, on shoulders and all above 10,000 (highest was 11,400). We landed and had lunch in Leadville– then flew some more– no rushing, just practice, practice– got to fly to several crash sites, the old Camp Hale (10th Mtn division did extreme cold wx training there during WWII), abandoned mines/ghosttowns– an A-10 crash site (on a pinnacle)– Amelia it was just the most brilliant day of my career so far. (I’m at the High Altitude School the CO national guard has in Eagle btw– its a train up for deployment, but I got lucky to come here to learn– otherwise I’d be doing all this training in a combat zone in August! We are so frikkin blessed girl!!!!!”

Here’s a link to her photos from that day: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.947501243203.1073741825.45200821&type=1

Moments like Jessie had yesterday don’t just fall into her lap. They happen because she creates her own storm, day after day. This girl is a ball of fire and feisty amazement and she is a role model to me. She is lightning and thunder and she isn’t waiting around for someone else to hand her inspiration on a silver platter. She’s in the kitchen, making a big ole batch of it right now.

If you want inspiration, don’t sit around and wait for it to pop up on your newsfeed, a pretty sunset view, or a bolt of lightning in a storm, go out and seek it like a thirsty dude looking for gatorade in the desert. Think of how incredibly turned on your life becomes when you know what you want… life comes alive and decisions can then be made to get yourself closer to where you want to be.

Being subtle is for weenies. Go get what you want and encourage others to engage in what they love.

Thunder is good, thunder is impressive; but it is lightning that does the work. -Mark Twain