After writing my last post about self-knowledge vs. self-awareness (which you can find on my website if you didn’t get a chance to read it already), I started thinking about more close-but-not-quite-the-same comparisons.  It was the last day of August and I was on a hike at the time, with Lola, my pup.  I wondered, was I motivated or inspired to take that hike?

 I came to the conclusion that I felt motivated to go.  Why?  Well, I had an annual park pass which was going to expire the next day.  It was Labor Day weekend and also Tour de Fat, here in Fort Collins.  Tour de Fat is a crazy awesome bike parade of wild proportions and wild costumes and festivities, put on by New Belgium Brewery, whose home is here, and in honor of Fat Tire beer and inspired by biking, especially on bikes with fat tires.  I think there were 20,000 people reported to have been involved.  It’s definitely worth watching and fun to participate.  I’ve done both several times.  This time, while I had that expiring park pass, I thought, that’s 20,000 less people likely to be hiking!  

I was also motivated by a desire to move and exercise with Lola, and to be outdoors.  I was motivated to keep the feel of summer going as long as possible.  I was motivated to push my muscles a little bit, feel strong, and release some pent up energy.

Was I also inspired?  The inspiration came in the form of clear skies, and no threats of lightening looming, because, honestly, I didn’t previously plan to hike that day.  Inspiration came from nature, that particular mountain itself.  The trail I chose is literally minutes away from my front door, where I’ve hiked often and am with which I’m quite familiar. Even though I know what the views look like and am familiar with the twists and turns on the varied paths, I didn’t know what they would look like that day!  The different seasons, who I’m with, the pace I’m going and the depth of my observation, all affect my experience.

I noticed, for the very first time, this big rock, precariously sitting on a relatively tiny tip, on a ledge.  That rock is the perfection of balance.  When I saw it, I knew that was why I was there that day. I believe there is always a message I’m to receive when I’m in the grand playground of nature. Curiosity about what that message will be, also inspires me.  When I’m hiking a new trail, that same curiosity inspires me to keep going, to see what’s around the next turn, or the view over the next peak, and the next.




1. the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way.

2. the general desire or willingness of someone to do something.




1. the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.

2. a sudden brilliant, creative, or timely idea.

3. the drawing in of breath; inhalation.


What might bring you to the yoga mat?  Or to a retreat?  What inspires you about yoga?  Travel?

Are you inspired by certain people, books, music. . . ?  Who and what provides you with motivation?

In yoga class, I teach that in every breath you take is the opportunity to begin again.  To inspire and to be inspired.  Take a deep breath now; allow it to fill you.  As you exhale, notice what you feel inspired or motivated to do next. And then, breathe again.