A month or so ago, I watched the movie, Julie and Julia, again. This moving is inspiring to me for many reasons. The most obvious reason is that I adore eating really good food. And I don't consider myself to have any talent in the kitchen. I have such an appreciation for those that have an intuitive creativity (or even the desire for it) regarding anything food. It's a language that I don't understand and I truly respect.
But, more importantly, this movie is inspiring to me because the main character, Julie, did an astonishing and courageous thing: she made a commitment. In the midst of her "challenging" life of managing a new living space in a new city, a full time job she didn't find that rewarding and, I think, just a general sense of wondering "What is life really about anyway?", she created a commitment for herself that reframed her circumstances.
Instead of focussing on life's circumstances (which remained the same over the course of the movie), Julie's focus was turned toward something she was passionate about every day: Julia Child and cooking. Despite her needing to continue to work full time and manage all the rest of life's day to day obligations, she set aside time and put her energy into this. And this is what changed her life. You can witness it in her character. Her feet become lighter, her eyes become brighter and, all of the sudden, she is filled with daily inspiration.
I think most of us can relate in some way to Julie's life before she found the inspiration that ignited her. And I will go out on a limb and say that, generally speaking, most of us might fall into one of two categories: 1. We have no idea what that "thing" is "out there" that could inspire us 2. We know what inspires us and we think it's too late to get started and/or we don't know where we could find the time.
I realize this story's character is about a young woman with her whole life ahead of her. And this could be one way this story fails. It sends a message that, as long as you are young and naive enough, more is possible.
Another way this story fails, is that there is fame and fortune waiting at the end of Julie's daily commitment (which takes place over the course of a year). In other words, there is (almost) immediate external gratification for her efforts.
Call me a slow learner (which I admit to everyday, really), but life just doesn't normally take this course. This is an exception. Where this story had it right was portraying a character whose life literally changed as a result of her commitment (cooking everyday) and focus. I believe, if we could all get here, to this place, our energy and passion could change the world (I know, BIG statement, right?). This magical transformation the character experienced didn't occur AFTER she received her fame and fortune. The transformation happened as a result of the process.
What is your process and how can you step out in it today? Perhaps it's time to try things on and experiment. Start seeking your passion. Maybe THIS is your commitment. If you know of your true inspiration, how can you break it down into manageable steps on a daily basis? It doesn't have to be as gigantic (and profound) as cooking one of Julia Child's recipes every day.
It's like this:
An avalanche of water doesn't make an impression.
A consistent drop of water will.
If food inspires you, too, you may like watching Vivian on A Chef's Life.
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