Sometimes inspiration can come from the most unexpected places. We seek inspiration all the time, don't we? We read the Wall Street Journal to find out what a competitor is doing or what the latest trend is that we can capitalize on; follow people we admire on Twitter, we join Linked In groups in the hopes of gaining some insight into our marketing or sales efforts. But sometimes, you can find inspiration when you're not looking for it. Case in point, I am an animal lover, well, I'm actually a Certified Humane Education Specialist. I'm also one of only 38 Reading Education Assistance Dog trainers in the United States (I don't train the dogs, I train the people to work with the therapy dogs to help children learn to read, very cool!). I also ride horses, dressage these days, eventing in my younger days. In any case, as a result of these interests I stumbled across books by Temple Grandin. Temple Grandin is an Associate Professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University. She holds a B.A. and M.S. and a Ph.D.; she is also autistic (Asperger's Syndrome). Her books are fascinating to read; they are brilliant and intriguing with an occasional child-like look at very complicated subjects. I have devoured every one of them.
This week HBO aired a movie about her life starring Claire Danes as Ms. Grandin. It is a moving and thought provoking look into the lives of those we may not understand, those who are "different, but not less." The entire movie is filled with inspiration, but one image that I found particularly empowering was that of the door. When confronted with a difficult situation, Temple Grandin is told by one of her professors to think of it as a door that she can go through rather than an obstacle. It is a theme throughout the movie. And it applies to each and everyone of us. Next time you are confronted with a situation that appears to be insurmountable or a roadblock or stumbling block, consider it instead to be a door with something new and exciting waiting on the other side and you will somehow find a way to get through it. And perhaps find a wonderful opportunity waiting for you! You can watch the movie on HBO over the next several weeks; but I also recommend reading one of her many books. You are bound to find even more inspiration!