Festival inspiration aka I want to try that!Festival season in Adelaide! There's nothing quite like it. The buzz, the excitement; you can feel the city transform under your feet into a virtual gallery of the senses. Artists flow into the city from all over the globe to walk upon our beautiful streets. They leave their footprints on the new paths they carve out for us during the festival, memories of their travels and performances. For four weeks the world stands on our door step and knocks. When we answer, we open ourselves up to many wonderful possibilities, opportunities and delights. The festival transforms the city and oftens transforms us as individuals and inspires us to think a little bit differently and perhaps even a little bit out of our comfort zone. Inspiration is a great feeling! It fills us with excitement and ideas, ways to change and improve. What it doesn't always manage to do however, is propel us far enough into the act of 'doing' and has a tendency to wear off. We need to harness that inspiration and transform it into action. We need a way to turn our exciting ideas into reality! Fortunately, this theory has a name and much smarter people than myself have studied and written about it!
Inspiring actionIn the 1800's Swedish scientist Svante Arrhenius coined the term 'activation energy' to describe the minimal amount of energy required to produce a chemical reaction. These days, psychologists use this metaphor to describe the amount of motivation required to initiate a task or activity. James Clear has written an amazing article about this theory and explains the idea super elegantly. Activation energy manifests during the 3 seconds after reminding yourself you 'should' do something and that's when you have the most potential to propel yourself forward from dreaming into achieving your goals.
OK, break it down!When thinking of a goal we want achieve, it is sometimes overwhelming and hard to find a starting point. This is the Danger Zone, when inspiration can begin to fade! To avoid this, our Artistic Director, Josh Hoare, uses a simple 2 minute rule to successfully complete tasks throughout the day. If a task is going to take him less than 2 minutes, he will do it straight away. This allows him to feel good and celebrate regular, small achievements and use his activiation energy effectively. These seemingly small daily victories help Josh to successfully complete larger tasks throughout the week. This type of goal setting is the same principle we apply to our circus training. We teach our students, of all ages, to identify their larger goals and then we give them the tools to break down these larger goals into smaller and more manageable tasks. Whether it be learning to juggle 5 objects, successfully cartwheeling or mastering an aerial silk drop; all of thee larger tasks can be broken down into smaller and more manageable parts.
So, with so much inspiration in the air this festival season, why not harness it and use your activation energy to transform that motivation into action and try something you never thought you could imagine. Why not start by setting a goal and working backwards and create a plan to achieve it. Remember, everyone starts somewhere!