When hustle meets vision, incredible things happen. Will power is when you take hold of an idea and refuse to let go until it becomes a reality. Thrill power is when a vision takes hold of you and refuses to let you quit. You can’t help but persevere, no matter what the obstacles. Still power helps you know who you are and why you are passionate about certain things. Thrill power gives you a clear WHAT, still power gives you a clear WHY and will power gives you a clear HOW. The combination is inspired, the human spirit, and there is no gene or equation for the human spirit. It is a combination of all that you are, nature and nurture, genes and environment, hustle and vision.

Thomas Edison described it as 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. I disagree with his ratios but agree with the sentiment. It is 100% inspiration and 100% perspiration because you usually can’t separate them. It is all of both, even if at times you are running on fumes. The beautiful thing about inspiration is that we ALL have the capacity for it and at any age or stage of life. This is empowering because it means you can do more than your genes or circumstances might suggest like a double amputee speedster or a 90 year old cellist. It is also makes you personally responsible for your vision because many of your excuses fail to account for the intangible factors related to inspiration.

Speaking personally, and I am neither an athlete nor a musician, I have discovered the power of will power, thrill power and still power. I have been running an independent spiritual community for the last 9 years. It has no religious ties, no endowments and after some of our challenges, no right to still be here nine years later. Many people thought we would fail (and didn’t hesitate to tell me). One person sat me down 9 years ago and predicted I would be gone in two years. We have overcome many negative voices, and the active sabotage of some of the same people. In a small community I regularly eyeball some of my detractors. I picture myself on a treadmill next to them, and you know who gets off first.

I have had moments of doubt. I have doubted the community but more importantly I have doubted my place in the world as a teacher of wisdom and personal responsibility. What kept me going in these moments of doubt? One wise adviser said to me in one dark moment, “You can’t help what you’ve got.”

I didn’t hear that with any arrogance or pride. In fact it would be much easier not to have this vision. But I can’t ignore it. It has a hold on me and gives me the hustle to persevere even when detractors get in my face and circumstances seem overwhelming. Inspiration is the ability to keep a clear vision and get up after a night of doubtful dreams and keep going.

I know who I am, and I believe in all that I am becoming. My vision keeps me focused beyond myself to the need for positive inspiration outside of mainstream religion. It is a vision I can’t ignore. You wouldn’t believe how much I respect and admire the people who have stuck with me over all these years, some of them facing their own barrage of personal criticism and negativity. Small towns can be unforgiving and fiercely tribal. These brave people alongside me have persevered with their own combination of will power, thrill power and still power.

You have your own situation. Maybe it’s not like mine, but you have your own challenges. Take encouragement from the examples I have shared. Keep going. Believe in who you are and believe that you bring things to the world that no one else can bring. Do it with incredible will power, inspired thrill power and calm still power.

Never underestimate the full extent of your still power. Don’t confuse stillness with passive timidity. Beneath both nature and nurture there is the ability to stay present to whatever is happening without becoming over attached to it. Beneath success and failure, beyond ability or disability, and well beyond the detractors, there is the presence of mind to stay open to all possibilities but attached to no outcomes. Still power keeps you so open to each moment, so flexible to change and so excited by possibilities that success and failure are only ever relative terms. Oscar Pistorius’s mom was right. If you’re in the game, you’re a winner. The game goes on and you ARE in it as long as you have life and breath.

Tap into your still power, stay focused on your thrill power and access every sweat bead of your will power. You have already won. You’re on the side of inspiration.

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  1. [...] the next piece I describe hustle’s partner in perseverance; inspiration, and my personal experience with [...]

  2. Jenny says:

    Ian, I loved reading this.  I’m always filled with comfort and reassurance when I read your words.  I especially love the lines “never underestimate the full extent of your still power.  Don’t confuse stillness with passive timidity.  Beneath both nature and nurture there is the ability to stay present to whatever is happening without becoming over attached to it.”
    Truly, if I can practice this in all the situations it would heal my wounds and help me to enjoy all the beautiful things that are happening in spite of my situations, which are always temporary.

  3. ian says:

    thanks Jenny. Well said and be well.

  4. Carol Shimp says:

    Thank you Ian for sharing the stay power. It helps me with my writing. :o))

  5. Fox says:

    I just want to let you know that you’ve made an indescribably tremendous impact in my own journey. I am not exaggerating when I say that I do not know where I would be without Soulseeds. The articles and affirmations have helped me see better when I feel blinded by my own self-doubt and fear. When I’m feeling crippled, I read your work and I leave walking again. You continually make a positive difference in my life. I can’t thank you enough. I don’t know how. All I know is I can’t live without Soulseeds. I can’t live without your wisdom, Ian! :)

    What I find equally inspiring is discovering that, for a time, my mom and I were both unknowingly following the same spiritual blog. We eventually found out when she randomly quoted something familiar: “to rest in the hammock of right now, with nowhere to be, and nothing to prove…” After the initial exclaims of surprise at that wonderful instance of serendipity, we basked in that seed of peace. Dear Ian, I know you will surpass and overtake every self-doubt and challenge that comes your way. You are making a real difference in places and in people you may not even know.

    From the bottom of my heart, thank you.  

  6. I believe in what you said and I try hard everyday to keep myself inspired.  We would not excel at anything if we don’t have drive to work hard for what we want to achieve.  Belief in myself and knowing that what we do is a passion and we are happy doing it.  What about contentment, do you think it is a factor to keep yourself inspired

  7. ian says:

    Thank you Roxanne, what an amazing way to start my day. You have given me the encouragement I needed to keep going. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Much love. Ian

  8. ian says:

    It is SO important to enJOY what you do. its hard to know which comes first. Does the joy make you passionate, or does passion bring joy? Both together I suspect.

  9. Joan Cook says:

    Oh Ian, I’ve listened to you on many Sundays and come away refreshed, motivated, irritated, full of admiration,,,a longlist of reactions to your gutsy vision.  This morning I read this piece and loved you for it.  

  10. ian says:

    thank you Joan. Gratefully received and returned. Ian

  11. Sandra says:

    Wow!  You are an inspiration.  I have been loving reading your messages on Twitter and only just clicked onto the link and read the post above.  I will read more from now on.  Thank you – wonderful vision, strength and calmness in the face of opposition which says so much about those people who maybe aren’t the happiest?  Good luck!  It sounds like a place I would enjoy being a part of :-)

  12. ian says:

    thank you Sandra. Awesome comment. You made my day.

  13. Sandra says:

    How lovely, hope the remainder of your day continues along the same vein :-)

  14. “You can’t help what you’ve got”……well ain’t that the truth!!  No use hiding your light under a bush I was once told….
    Great blog Ian, thank you so much!

  15. I loved the three “power” categories and your descriptions of them. And I admire the spiritual community you are building with others. Thanks for sharing these uplifting thoughts!

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