People are always a great inspiration, as we are a species that must find thrills in life
Talk to Strangers
We live in a society where no one’s life is completely
uneventful. Anyone and everyone can benefit from another person’s experience,
not to mention the fact that a lot of people are very lonely.
Volunteer at a nursing home. A lot
of the good people in these homes have lived honest, hard lives and have
overcome many obstacles. They can tell you about the wars they’ve fought
in, true, but more importantly, they can tell you how they scraped money
to pay for groceries, reared a rebellious child out of a drug addiction or
just a little tip to live by. To volunteer, see if your local hospital has
a retirement facility they have incorporated. If it doesn’t, talk to a
local church member; they often make rounds and will help you get in.
Last, if you’re a very bold person, call a local home yourself; most
receptionist will eagerly invite you into the center.
Invest in birds.Buy cheap cereal, like Dollar
Store Wheat-O’s, or gather the loaves of bread that molded too quickly.
Then take a stroll/ride your bike to a grassy area, whether it be a park,
river side, or an ornate parking lot. Sit on the bench and throw the bread
relatively close to your feet, but far enough that birds will come to you.
People are naturally drawn to folks who are liked by animals.
Take the dog out. Talk to other
people out walking the dog.
Stand in a long line. Go to the
biggest store on a Saturday, preferably around noon. Wal Marts work
especially well. Gather up the things you need, but keep your unusual
items on top; these will serve as your conversation pieces. Scout for a
long line, but with a social person in the back. You can tell prime
candidates by the way they stand (still, slightly slouched and relaxed)
and where they are looking (toward the aisles, looking for something they
missed; at other customers, looking for conversation). Start a
conversation. Make your conversation pieces painfully obvious (i.e. baby
toys, boxed jewelry, curtains for a new bathroom).
Talk to the relatives you were always
told not to talk to. Look through old address books and find the names
of people you’ve never heard of. Ask your family about the name, just in
case the person has passed away. If your relatives suggest “he’s just not
the same” or “he’s nuttier than squirrel poop” then you have found your
inspiration source. Look up the area code of the phone number if it is not
local and try to call the person at a convenient time. (You can never go
wrong with 6:15!) Introduce yourself and try to pick at conversation. If
the person doesn’t want to talk, politely acknowledge this and hang up. An
easier method (and one in which you will certainly have more permanent
inspiration from) is to send letters. Stray away from cards, as they can
seem cheesy and “Can you send me one back, preferably with money/a gift
card in between the folds?”
**Always stay in a public place so that you can get help if
something should go wrong.