“Nothing great has ever been achieved without enthusiasm.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson
Wandering with curiosity, that is what I often do whenever I venture to the Pacific coast. As you can see above, I sometimes wander off the trail to see what type of photo I can capture, and my fearless boys are daring enough to follow me (although Norman sometimes leads the way :)). My enthusiasm for Mother Nature’s beauty has been a reliable constant in my life, and going on one more walk, trying to capture one more picture and feeling the breeze while taking in the fresh air is a constant urge. Even when I am in my classroom teaching, my gaze wanders to the window which looks out upon tall pine trees and a few of the hills and peaks unobstructed by edifices or roads.
Following and embracing enthusiasm welcomes magic into your life in so many ways. We will never know precisely what the magic is until we say yes to enthusiasm, but as you will see in the list below, there is really no reason to turn your back on this natural and good friend to each of us that is enthusiasm.
1.Find infinite fuel
“At the height of creative activity fueled by enthusiasm, there will be enormous intensity and energy behind what you do. You will feel like an arrow that is moving toward the target—and enjoying the journey.” —Eckhart Tolle, from A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose
Having a sincere curiosity for any project or idea that remains in your mind and begs to be shown to the world will manifest its own fuel. Much like adrenaline, but with far more endurance and resilience, enthusiasm is sincerely passionate about the work. Equally enjoying the journey as well as the final product. From finding the enthusiasm to pursue a year or multiple year’s project or degree or significant goal, if your pursuit is sincere, the fuel will be found.
2. Like a magnet, you begin to be drawn to similarly minded individuals (and they to you)
“With enthusiasm you will find that you don’t have to do it all by yourself. In fact, there is nothing of significance that you can do by yourself.” —Eckhart Tolle
I firmly believe that organic connections are far more likely to be sustained over a long duration; however, we cannot be a wallflower. When we are enthusiastic, we begin to find the courage to put ourselves out into the world in a way we might not have ever done in the past. And when we begin to do this, we begin to show the world with sincerity who we are and what we care and are curious about. Some will walk away, some will be respectful, but not necessarily moved, others will appreciate and support, and some still will reach out to connect in some way. You will not have to force or manipulate, but simply be exactly who you are and being enthusiastic about what captures your curiosity.
3. Unnecessary pain and stress begin to subside
“Enthusiasm and the ego cannot coexist.” —Eckhart Tolle
When we assume life should be a certain way, when we have expectations of how our lives should go, how others should act and how the world should run, we are letting our ego run our lives, and when we unconsciously or consciously let our Ego become the driver, unnecessary stress and negative emotions flood our lives. Eckhart Tolle explains, “When you want to arrive at your goal more than you want to be doing what you are doing, you become stressed.” In other words, set goals in your life that are intrinsic to you and your sincerest curiosity and passions. The joy of the journey is the way to living well, and when you are enthusiastic, the Ego is no longer at the wheel, it may not even be in the car at all.
4. Competition with the world lessens and healthier relationships emerge
“Unlike ego wanting, which creates opposition in direct proportion to the intensity of its wanting, enthusiasm never opposes. It is non confrontational. Its activity does not create winners and losers. It is based on inclusion, not exclusion, of others. It does not need to use and manipulate people, because it is the power of creation itself and so does not need to take energy from some secondary source.” —Eckhart Tolle
Insecurities begin to subside and you will find yourself applauding and cheering on others in their lives’ successes and strivings. You will come to realize there is more than enough oxygen for us all to do amazing, as we feel the infinite fuel and serendipitous moments that walk into our lives when we live with enthusiasm.
5. You realize your true purpose with clarity
“Enthusiasm means there is deep enjoyment in what you do plus the added element of a goal or a vision that you work toward.” —Eckhart Tolle
The marriage of loving what you do and striving to achieve something of value to you and mostly likely the world in some unique way, no matter how small or seemingly large is what enthusiasm is and when you find these two, you will have found your purpose. You will have found where you will place large portions of your time and your energy and you will love living your life . . . everyday.
6. You may find yourself working, but it will be work you enjoy
“Sustained enthusiasm brings into existence a wave of creative energy, and all you have to do is ‘ride the wave’.” —Eckhart Tolle
A recent example. Many of you who follow me on Instagram saw my recent home project – wallpapering my mudroom (here and here), but it was with sincere enthusiasm that I pursued this project through to completion. For eight+ hours, wallpaper was pasted and placed and fitted and then more wallpaper (a mini lunch) and then more wallpaper, all the way until the end, and I was tickled to be able to do it. As well, the same can be said for writing and yes, editing! I love the editing process of writing my books, but I know that is not the case for everyone. Yes, it is work, but it is enjoyment of the process married with a desired outcome at the completion fo the work. Each and every one of us has something upon doing that we will feel this way; the job is to find this “something”, because I promise you, it does exist.
7. Being fully present in your life becomes far easier
“Enthusiasm ‘wants’ nothing because it lacks nothing.” —Eckhart Tolle
The yesterdays and the tomorrow will vanish when you are immersed in what you are enthusiastic about. Whether it is building your business, traveling around the globe, decorating your home, tending to your garden, playing with your kids, you name it, if you are enthusiastic about it, you will be fully present, and that is the best place to be each day for a life of true and sustained contentment.
8. Your dreams and goals materialize
“Enthusiasm is the power that transfers the mental blueprint [your goal or vision] into the physical dimension.” —Eckhart Tolle
At first a vision may seem impossible, but it isn’t until we see it with our own eyes that we realize how powerful enthusiasm actually is. The key ingredient for success is enthusiasm, and that is the element of sincerity that when present will not lead you astray.
9. A way of life that is fulfilling each day, along the way to the desired goal
“Enjoyment of what you are doing, combined with a goal or vision that you work toward, becomes enthusiasm.” —Eckhart Tolle
Living simply luxuriously focuses predominantly on elevating the everydays and when the big amazing moments or achievements are realized they are even more appreciated; however, we do not long for them to be forever because we have built a life in which we sincerely lovely our everyday life. When we understand that the art of living well is understanding and then practicing this approach to living, we are practicing living in the present. The journey becomes a joy when we enthusiastically approach each day, and along our journey we will experience great moments of acquiring our goals, and those too will be celebrated with enthusiasm. The gift of living with enthusiasm is that it elevates the entire journey of our lives, and what better way to live?
Embracing enthusiasm asks of each of us to trust without knowing, to step forward without a promise, but in actuality there is a promise, a promise that you will find amazing gifts of delight that will be both a treasure map and the treasure. My appreciation for Mother Nature runs deep, but one of the best gifts that I keep receiving from following my enthusiasm is the creativity that is sparked when I wander. I never know what idea will present itself, but when I open myself up to the possibility, I invest in myself, a more contented self. May you choose enthusiasm today and each day moving forward and enjoy what you discover.