Be inspired.

Lately, I have been inspired by amazing women.

Take my 18 year old niece who is currently in Uganda for three weeks. She is with a team of older people ie none of her close friends for support, on top of culture shock and the ramifications of being in a third world country. Or my nephew’s girlfriend, who, at the age of 18 spent a month in Africa helping in a team where she knew no-one. And then there is our friend who, at 17 went on a schoolies trip to Thailand, similar to the one Chalky and I are about to embark on in just over a week. And, of course, there is Chalky herself – 15 years old and already wanting to make a difference in the lives of others; whose main concern in life isn’t boys or hair styles or shopping but a focus on world issues and giving back.

And then there are the women who just inspire me daily with their courage in their circumstances. Women who refuse to allow their situations to get the better of them and just keep on picking themselves up and dusting themselves off. Β And it’s not always the big things. Quite often, it’s the small things that provide me with the greatest sense of wonderment. Like not just ‘putting up’ with their husband’s faults but really loving them through it. It’s women who, day in, day out, make sacrifices for their children that no-one even notices. It’s women doing the best they can with what they have. It’s being brave enough to cry, strong enough to scream and tenacious enough to simply keep putting one foot in front of the other.

It’s the women who come to me to talk and ‘download’ and yet I am the one who is encouraged and uplifted by them at the end of our time together. Their spark and doggedness ignites something within me, and I am better for it.

Some years ago, talking to, or hearing about, these women would have intimidated me, made me feel small and ‘less than’. Rather than being inspired by them, I would have felt guilt that I wasn’t doing something the same, or that I was less patient with my circumstances that, by comparison, were not that difficult.

Now, I don’t feel those things. I simply feel inspired and motivated by the strength and determination of those around me. By sharing their lives, their struggles, with me, my friends help me see what grit and determination can achieve, and what it can do to our circumstances.

And that all of us can do it. When I start feeling apprehensive about our upcoming trip, I just think about those teenagers I know who have done similar trips, and that gives me courage and a sense of calm.

You don’t have to look too far, or too hard, to find inspiration. Amazing people are all around us. You just have to start to see it.

10 thoughts on “Be inspired.

  1. I only know you through Writers Online and Year of the Novel and I’ve only spoken to you on the phone, but I think I you could safely count yourself among these inspiring women, Susannah.


  2. There is good in the world, there are amazing people. Sometimes we have to weed through a lot of news to find the good. Best wishes on your trip. Will you be able to blog about it and post pictures?


  3. When do you leave for your trip? I think about that often, even when I can’t get to your blog to comment. 😦

    I find I’m inspired a lot by everyday people, actually. The ones who are there for their kids, who volunteer their time, who help out their neighbors for whatever reason. I know people who give and give and give right out of their homes even while they’re working full-time jobs and raising a family, and I’m amazed at the positive energy they evoke.


    • We leave a week from today! Starting to feel very real now πŸ™‚

      Yes, the everyday people are the ones who inspire me the most too. And they don’t even know they are doing it, so I try to let them know whenever I can. It’s amazing how encouraging it can be to know someone has noticed what you are doing.


  4. I love the inspirational stories you shared. I know what you mean, I also used to be intimidated by others who I thought were doing life better than me. Today, I’m inspired and encouraged, which makes me feel healthier and more like I have a chance to live that way as well. Thanks for a great post!


  5. Susannah, you make such a beautiful point when you talk about not being intimidated or feeling less capable around other people. One of the joys (there are a few!) of getting older is being able to rejoice with other people and celebrate their successes without worrying about how it makes us look.
    I too am looking forward to hearing about your trip to Thailand. I’m on a trip to some remote places here in the States and haven’t been able until now to catch up on blog reading. I hope your trip will be inspiring, fun, and productive.


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