If you ask a bunch of people, “What inspires you?” you’ll get a lot of different answers.
Some people are inspired by great leaders or people that have overcome challenges.
Some love great art.
Some are inspired to do great work by their kids.
I am inspired by mediocrity.
Nothing makes me want to get up and get things done more than seeing something mediocre or half-assed. There’s a “That’s OK, but it would be better if…” thing that goes on.
Sometimes it’s more like “I’m not even a <occupation that does that> and I can do that better right now!”
For example, seeing a speaker trotting out some old saw… often about a starfish, I’m rejuvenated in my speaking. I promise to be more original and more dynamic.
Are you inspired?
How about you? Do you find yourself saying something like “I could do better?” when you see “decent” work?
If you do, I encourage you to take the next step. Actually DO something better!It’s probably a pretty common thought, “I could do that better.” What’s not common is the follow through.
Take up the challenge and make something new and wonderful happen.
Haven’t been inspired by mediocrity?
If you haven’t been the sort of person that thinks “I could do that better,” perhaps you could try it. Examine everything that you encounter more deeply: a menu, a story, a web page, anything. What would you change/add/remove in order to make it better?
The next step is to actually go make those changes. I understand this may be a lot to ask. But, consider what a difference you might make for someone else and for yourself!
Maybe you make a newly designed prototype and show the owner. Without charging them anything, you would help them improve at least one of their processes/items. Think of the goodwill you’ve created.
And the practice you’ve done improves your skills.
This isn’t about become egotistical and thinking your way is always the better way.
You might find out as you try to build a better mousetrap that it’s harder than you thought. By trying it, you’ve probably learned some new skills.
Maybe the work that someone created was actually better than you thought, which is something you’ve will only learn by trying to do it too. You will have a better appreciation for that skill.
For example, learning a piece of music can give you a better appreciation for what it takes to perform it.
It’s just something to try. Find something you think is “OK” and remake it… better.
Do not settle for a world filled with mediocre things.