This week at the Hub our focus was to get inspired. As an Innovator-in-Residence, everything is new to me. I have fresh eyes on Sibley and I try to take that same attitude everywhere. The fact is, inspiration is everywhere and usually in unexpected places. You just have to keep your eyes, heart, and mind wide open. Being inspired is an essential element to the design process and a key factor to make something innovative.
Being inspired is much easier said than done of course. We easily get overwhelmed with the day-to-day emails, obligations and routine. So what are some tricks to stay inspired?
Here are mine:
- Be grateful. Everyday point something out in your life you are thankful for. It could be as simple as "I am grateful it isn't raining so I don't ruin my shoes" or whatever. This kind of perspective taking allows your mind to look for positives regularly.
- Take breaks. Life is stressful but it is important for your mental health to schedule breaks. Sometimes I call my mental breaks "mind jogs" where I literally set the timer on my phone for 5-10 minutes and allow myself to do whatever I want, think about whatever I want, read whatever I want or just plain let my mind wander.
- Meditate. Yes, again easier said than done. But taking out 15-20 minutes from your sleep to get up early and meditate will undoubtedly change your life and open your mind to new combinations- the basic recipe for inspiration.
- Change Location. For a day, an afternoon, a weekend, or whenever you possibly can, put yourself in a new context. Saying "travel" doesn't help because it's costly in time and money and can't be done frequently. So I try to expose myself to new scenarios. Try a library in a totally new neighborhood, a museum, a farmer's market or flea market in another community. Take a new route to work or switch up your jogging path. What's different there? Notice those traits and embrace them. Let yourself be inspired by how other people live and relate to each other. You never know when that inspiration will strike you.
- Stay Humble. This is a summation of all the tips with a key element. Assume the role of the beginner. The only difference between a master and a beginner is that the master has failed more times than the beginner has even tried. Don't be intimated and overwhelmed. Understand everyone has been a beginner at something and it's ok not to know. It's better not to have all the answers so that you are open to potentially new answers to new problems.
This week I was inspired by everyone who works at Sibley and the patients who choose this hospital. I got to glimpse and learn from everyone here everyday. I also visited several locations in the local community and got to know who lives here, what they need, do, and enjoy about this area. Thank you for being my muse and I am grateful for the opportunity to innovate at the hub each week!