I find that inspiration tends to come in intervals. Sometimes I will be very inspired – making connections, realizing similarities and differences, breaking down ideas and reassembling them in different ways. To use a cliché: “When it rains it pours.” But other times, I find myself in an inspiration drought. Unable to think of anything original. Blank. And when in a drought, there is nothing I can do to change it – it even seems that the harder I try the less chance I have of finding inspiration.
Authors call it “writer’s block.” It tends to come in the middle of things. It sets in just after they’ve exhausted all of the excitement that compelled them to begin writing in the first place and leaves them hanging in the middle of things – in limbo – before thinking of a way to bring about a conclusion.
When we look at the lives of great people, we tend to focus on the beginning and the end. In the beginning we see the roots of their success, their upbringing, their unique circumstances, and what they have overcome. In the end we see the things they have accomplished, their remarkable feats, and their noteworthy successes. All the attention is on the beginning and the end, but I would argue that the most important part is really the middle. The middle is unglamorous and boring. In the middle there is no humble beginning or big finish. There is just the middle. But more than anything, it is how we deal with the middle, the limbo, the writer’s block, the inspiration drought, that really dictates where we end up in life.