Who inspires you?

A friend recently told me that watching the big shifts in my career path over the years had inspired her. It was a very kind and flattering thing to say. And it got me thinking of all the people who inspire and show me what it is to have:

  • Courage & perseverance: My Up With Women coaching clients who have had very difficult life experiences. They work through real challenge to find employment and housing to create new futures for themselves and their children. 
  • Generosity: My niece, who rescues plants discarded as no longer perfect enough for fancy hotel and office tower lobbies. With her care they become housewarming gifts for people getting new apartments through a Montreal social housing organization.
  • Struggle: Friends and clients who fight to create healthier lives by giving up smoking, drinking alcohol or other habits that don’t serve them.
  • Effort & grace: The swimmers at my pool who come on deck with walkers and canes. Once in their element they move through the water as fluidly and surely as seals.
  • Hope & vulnerability: People who have had terrible divorces and are still open to love and new relationships.
  • Love: Folks who continue to reach out to an estranged child or sibling, even though it hurts them to not get any response.
  • Connection & community: My friend who started a women’s walking group years ago. Even during the worst of an Ottawa winter and COVID they met every week and walked – a hockey-stick length apart – together.

These people make me optimistic for the way we can be hopeful and good – to ourselves and with the people around us. That humans can change and be as open, beautiful and limitless as a prairie sky. Who inspires you? Do they know? Maybe it is time to tell them.