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  • Nikhil Dhawan

When You Feel Uninspired

"The obstacles in our way are only two, though caused in various ways, namely, dullness and distraction (avarana and vikshepa)....The first step is to be intensely active, so that idleness and laziness are entirely banished from life."

-J.C. Chatterji (Indologist)

Have you ever felt uninspired? Take a minute to truly think about that. Do you feel inspired in this very moment? If so, what is it that inspires you? How excited are you to live the life that you're living? Are you a human being (noun) or a human being (verb)?

The quote above reminds me of Newton's first law of motion. To paraphrase: a body at rest remains at rest, and a body in motion stays in motion unless acted upon by an outside force. J.C. Chatterji is suggesting we eliminate the ability to be lazy or idle by remaining active. Unless, of course, we hit moments of dullness and are forcing activity by distracting ourselves. In today's world, our options to distract ourselves are limitless. We carry a full-fledged computer in our hands, pockets, or bags at all times. If we're bored, we mindlessly pull out our phones and begin scrolling through different social media platforms, articles, emails/messages, or anything. "The world is at our fingertips." The external world, that is. But what about our internal world? What about the mess in our heads? Have we stopped and quietly sat with our minds to remove that mess or at least confront it?

Since this is a transparent platform all about honesty and the willingness to share our vulnerabilities, I'll write about mine. All too often I feel uninspired. I spend too much time overthinking life instead of just living life. Although I've always claimed that I don't care what people think, the reality is, that's difficult to escape. Our mental balance is determined by the opinions of the people we care about, plus our true self (subconscious yearning). Unfortunately, this confusion has left me uninspired at different points of time. I've spent more time worrying about a result (and pleasing people), instead of focusing on the task at hand. I subconsciously daydream and imagine how things might turn out, without actually taking action and just giving it my all. I've been distracted by my own thoughts and my unclear mind.

So, truthfully speaking, I don't have an answer regarding what might bring you inspiration. We're all imperfect and flawed people without all the answers. Additionally, I don't believe in a "one size fits all" method, but I do believe in introspection. Next time you're bored and about to pull out your phone, don't. Just sit quietly. Don't let yourself be distracted. Let your mind come to rest; it's always working and needs a break too. Next time you're sad, in pain or depressed, don't try to suppress those feelings. Acknowledge them and accept the situation for what it is. Confront those feelings and let them take their course. No human is without pain and suffering; we just have to accept it for what it is and observe how we're handling the situation. Then we can move on, having gotten to know ourselves a little better.

The deeper we dig, the more inspiration we might find. The more we distract ourselves, the further we'll suppress our true feelings and ultimately our true self.

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