What Does Inspirational Really Mean?

I work for and with people that inspire me. My boss started a business on a dream and a desire to make a difference. We tell stories of people that overcome incredible obstacles.

See me wax poetic on Growing Bolder in:

I am inspired by people that survive cancer.

I am inspired by people that put their lives on the line to selflessly protect others.

I am inspired by working moms.

I am inspired by people who challenge themselves physically.

And most of all…I’m inspired by ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

So despite the fact that I am exceedingly proud and humbled to be on the list of people nominated as the Top 50 Most Inspirational Tweeps, I’m not going to ask you to vote for me. I’m going to ask you to go check out the others on the list and find some new people to follow that can help you on your own healthy living journey. If you feel compelled, check my name — but don’t feel like you have to.

And I’m going to ask you to tell me, in the comments of this post, who inspires you.

Your mom? Your best friend? A celebrity? A politician? Maybe not a person, but a movement?

It’s the busiest time of the year for me, and I’m struggling to stay positive and balanced. You can help by reminding me what is really inspirational in the world.

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  1. says

    Ok I actually found you through that list! I’m really enjoying your blog and hope to get to know how inspirational you can be! 😀

  2. says

    I am inspired by a friend of mine who has Rheumatoid Arthritis. She doesn’t talk about it at all, and in fact, I’d known her for several years before I knew she had it. She doesn’t complain, she just does her thing. She’s a teacher, and keeps a heating pad in her desk drawer. On especially difficult days, she uses it to relieve her joints while her students are at specials. I am in awe of her never-ending strength and commitment to her teaching job.

    I’m inspired by my husband, who used to loathe running but is training for his first half marathon for a cause we both believe in strongly.

    I’m inspired by the love of my grandparents for one another. They have been married for 60 years. 60. As they age and their health starts to go, the way they care for each other is truly something to marvel at. Grandma can no longer see, so Grandpa does that for her by guiding her to where she needs to go. Grandpa can no longer walk, so she is his legs. She gets what he needs without complaint. Each does so many things to take care of the other, and it is all without complaint. Just complete selfless love. It’s really something to see.

    • says

      Love, love, love. Especially about your grandparents. I think we’re all hoping that some day, as our bodies break down, we’ll have someone or someoneS around to be our support.

  3. says

    OK, I know I am a one-trick-pony when it comes to your blogs, but you have inspired me all your life…so has your brother…you remind me that I was once young, vibrant, exciting and energetic…I am older now and definitely none of the above; I am, however, happy to be me and that is a good thing. So thank you for continuing to inspire me…

  4. says

    I get inspired by things I see in my daily life. The mother with 3 kids at the grocery store buying healthy things for her kids—by patients at the hospital who are battling for the lives but keep a positive attitude. Inspiration can be seen EVERYWHERE.

  5. says

    I’m inspired by one of my best friends since high school. She has cerebral palsy, and has been through hell in just about every other way you can imagine. She’s the toughest fighter in the world, to me and inspires me every day.

  6. says

    I’m inspired by grandma who went outside herself and what was traditional for her generation to save her family and make it work. She got a job when they neeeded the extra money. She raised 7 kids, two with disabilities. She put up with the most stubbourn man (my grandfather). She taught my mom to be the strong woman she is to raise me. And she raised my two lovely cousins until she passed away almost 3 years ago when their mom was too selfish to do so. That woman was amazing and I’m so inspired to be more and more like her everyday.

    • says

      I think it’s so special that you included your grandma, and noted that her work was especially inspirational because she did it against the odds.

  7. says

    Such an amazing post. I find inspiration everywhere. My grandma has had a hip replacement, two open heart surgeries, an aneurism, buried two husbands and two kids and she STILL has a smile on her face and acts like she’s 21 every. single. day.

  8. says

    I am inspired by people who make a difference and those who defy the odds. Big or small. My kids – who inspire me to think like a kid again. The daycare providers for my kids who love “their babies” passionately and take my place when I can’t be there. My lead at work who had hip surgery in Feb and is back to spinning 4-5 times a week. My parents for taking chances and teaching me it’s OK to take risks and to fail – life still goes on. My godmother – who despite being told mutiple times now she is only going to live for a few more months – keeps fighting and telling jokes. For bloggers (like you!) who make me want to be a better writer/blogger and really put myself out there! So much inspiration!!

  9. says

    You definitely inspire me! To be a better blogger, in a good way :)

    since being diagnosed with cancer I get called an inspiration all the time now. It’s weird because it’s not like I sought out to get cancer, so living through it feels hardly inspiring to me! With that said, I feel like I’ve learned a lifetime if lessons since my diagnosis, and I’ve realized you don’t need to get cancer to share these lessons. So it’s really pushed me towards sharing these things with others.

    These days, my friends who are moms inspire me the most. Motherhood is often overlooked because it’s so common, but the amount that these women do is unreal.

    • says

      You know what I think it is? It’s not surviving cancer that’s truly inspirational. It’s the WAY you and others fight the disease — with honesty, optimism and a strength that the rest of us wonder if we’d have were we in the same position.

      I am so inspired by mothers, especially as I approach the idea of having kids myself. There are so many choices to make, from conception to graduation, and it’s terrifying to think about the responsibility!

  10. says

    Isn’t it true? I am inspired every day – my job is to pay attention. I am inspired by a mom headed out with her son – for 20 minutes – to play play play as a way to build healthy habits.

    I am inspired watching my sister be a beautiful mother to her sons.

    I am inspired when Lisa completes the Portland Century.

    I am inspired when I learn that others are just like me – human, fallible, and trying to do a bit better, little by little.

    I am inspired by joy, humor, and service – always.

    Thanks Katy!

  11. says

    Like the ladies who have commented before me, I’m inspired on a daily basis and often that inspiration comes from different places. Daily, I am inspired by my co-workers, both in my office and throughout the greater college campus I work on. Most people have such passion for their work and that can be contagious and inspiring. I love how that filters into my own work. I’m inspired by my mom. I’m inspired by the woman she is and the conviction she lives her life with. I want to be like her everyday. While my grandmother has passed, she continues to inspire me. For the majority of her life she lived with a disability caused by polio. She lived during a time when people were particularly harsh and judgemental towards people with disabilities, and yet exceeded everyone’s expectations. Between my mom & grandmother it was engrained in me to live life with an open mind and to get to know a person before passing judgement. That openness has led me to relationships with some amazing people.

    • says

      So many amazing women in your life…

      I imagine you get quite a bit of inspiration and motivation from the different generations you’re exposed to every day.

  12. says

    Hmm … I am inspired by the women clergy in my association who have been in ministry for their entire lives. They were ordained in the 60s and 70s and I do not take for granted that it was not as easy for them to be passed through for ordination as it was for me. I try to soak up as much wisdom as I can from them!

  13. says

    Each morning as I’m grumbling about going to work, about 20 miles into my drive I come up over the hill and see the Great Smoky Mountains. THAT is inspiring. Each and every morning it stops my bad mood in its tracks, I take a deep breath and I’m okay. I love it.

    • says

      I had that same thought when I was vacationing in Seattle last year…I was walking around on the last day, really bummed out that I had to go back to the real world. I turned and saw Mount Rainier, and just stared and stared…and remembered how lucky I was to be there, even for a fleeting moment.

  14. says

    I’m inspired by a lot of things I see every day. But, one person in particular is my brother. He was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease at the age of 8- and the doctor said it was one of the worst cases he’d seen. Matt is almost 20 now and you would never know that he has this condition. He successfully plays college soccer and never lets his disease define his life!

    • says

      That inspires me, BIG TIME. I feel so lucky to never have battled any serious diseases, and hearing about people that have been facing challenges for years and years really makes me appreciate my health. Thanks for sharing!

  15. says

    I gotta say, that blog is pretty inspiring. I agree with your list. My best friend inspires me, as she is a cancer survivor @ the cool age of 29. My mom inspires me, being a single mom and never ever having me want for anything. And my kid and my kid in my belly inspire me to be a great role model.

  16. says

    I am most inspired by my children. Each and every day, no matter what their age whether it is the 9 yr old, the 24 yr old or the 27 yr old..they each have a uniqueness that is nothing short of inspiring to continue to improve.

    I am also inspired by those that do all those small daily things just to make another smile

  17. says

    i went to church with a now 7 year old who is battling brain tumors, and was first diagnosed at age 5. she inspires me.

    i look at all these healthy living blogs and see people who have so amazingly overcome eating disorders. they inspire me.

    my freshman year roommate in college is just incredible, in terms of her dreams, the way she models faith, her intelligence, everything. she has totally changed my life, and has always believed in her. and her believe in me, inspires me.

    i look around my life and i truly believe that we all have it in ourselves to be inspirational. in fact, it’s just a matter of perspective. all of my friends, really everyone i know, is fighting a hard battle. each one of us has troubles and worries and problems and insecurities. but we get out of bed each day nonetheless, and we even share our thoughts with the world. and i’d say each and every person out there, who gets out of bed, who goes about their day, who fights their demons and hopes for the best, inspires me. because we are all connected in a way that i know i’ll never understand, and we have so very much to learn from each other!

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