February: A Month of Inspiration …

When I first started grad school, I attended a brief “get to know the department” meeting where the professors sat at the front of the room and the students sat at the back and gawked at World Reknown sitting in Row 2 and Rumored to be Intimidating, perfect posture and unsmiling, front row center.  They addressed us one by one, handing out the elevator speech on their research interests and courses taught.  A woman with brown hair – New but Unknown, she had been on leave the previous year – faced us, smiled, then introduced her class, “And, because I know that 8:30AM in February is exactly what every student looks forward to …”

She has a point.  Not necessarily the 8:30AM part because I’ve been getting up at 7 daily, but the part about the utter gloominess of February.  Although the daily 7AM awakening has been a bit of a killjoy as well: unbeknownst to me, the failed daily ping set my internal alarm clock and has refused to let it snooze ever since.  Curse newly-minted-grad-student-me for my lack of foresight!  Didn’t I know I’d come to cherish the night owl study habits, only to discover too late that I had managed, once again, to foil my own plans with good intentions?

But I digress.  We were talking about gloom.  The gloom has seeped its way into every corner of my life, even dimming my initial burst of enthusiasm over starting this blog.  As I’ve been working away at my Vitamin D deficiency, it occurred to me that if the sun refused to cooperate, I would just have to combat the external grays with some internal shininess of my own creation.  And thus I present February’s theme: Inspiration.

Something light and airy, shimmering gold to brighten the still-darkened mornings when I crawl out of bed to write (did I mention slightly-dinged-grad-student-me is exacerbating abovementioned situation by aiming for 6:30AM daily?), a cheery hearth to return to after picking my way through icy, darkened streets each night after class.  Inspiration to remind us that spring – or sprinter, as it is known around here – is on its way.  Inspiration to stoke the fires of creativity, of joy, of possibility, a new kick of enthusiasm to propel us forward as wait for the first sign of new life is coaxed from the ground.

This is the perfect time to take on something new.  If you’re considering a monthly challenge, there’s the additional advantage of starting it in a shortened month!  And building on the theme of values, February feels like the perfect time to dig a little deeper into what we truly want, to pick a new direction and take those first, tenuous steps.  It might be career-related, it might be personal interest or that nagging item that always pops up on the to do list.  It is the perfect time to remember back to the dreams of our childhood, to start afresh with that vision in mind.

As for me, I think I’ll do something inspirational every single day.  What about you?

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