What Inspires You?

By Doyinsola Aluko


Today I was asked the question “what inspires you?” in a course I am currently taking this summer. At first I thought of the answer “life itself” then I realized how cliché that sounded. For some reason, this question that would have been easy for me to answer on a normal day became so complex. Honestly, I believe it is because recently I have been questioning a lot in my life. I have been questioning even the littlest of things. The other day I was not sure if I should visit a friend, stay back home or just go get frozen yogurt and chill a bit outside. I love going out a lot even if it is to check how the weather is for 5 minutes, so I often just make spontaneous moves. It took me almost 2 and a half hours to make up my mind on what exactly would be best for the situation. Mind you, within this period of uncertainty I had already driven half way to my friend’s place then to Yogurt Mountain then back to my house and you can only imagine where else I went on this journey. It honestly was not that deep but I found a way to make it deeper than the Mariana Trench. This is so nerve-wracking because the whole cycle of indecisiveness has been one I struggled so hard to break a few years ago and all of a sudden it has started to show its face again.

After a short but intense pep talk I gave myself on how this question was not that complex and how I was just over-thinking things, I proceeded to open a new word document and begun to type.

This is what I said:

I am inspired by many things in life as I believe it is important to be observant and capable of using life situations to your advantage. One thing I am inspired by that stands out to me is a challenge. A challenge forces us to think out of the box. When we are faced with it, we do things that are quite foreign to us and this leads to self-improvement. It leads to new adventures and new ideas. It leads to the transformation and redefinition of things once thought to be of no use to us. Another thing that inspires me is a positive relationship; not only between human beings but also with abstract things. For instance, a positive relationship between several musical notes leads to the construction of music. The same goes for the positive relationship between hydrogen and oxygen atoms that creates the molecule, water. Positive relationships bring out the best in you and give you the chance to put both teamwork, trust and harmony to work.

Challenges such as losing my grandmother, thinking I was never going to get into college and being in very uncomfortable relationships with people have all inspired me to want to get the best out of life and make a difference in the lives of everyone I meet. Keeping positive relationships with people has been hard for me. I have had to either be extremely submissive or extremely domineering. Finding a middle ground has been quite difficult but in the few positive relationships I have maintained, I have been extremely motivated and inspired beyond what I thought possible.

Right now I am trying to find ways to deal with challenges while building positive relationships concurrently. Working with NGOs to combat several maternal and child health issues combines these two together nicely. I also ultimately want to become a relationship therapist. This is a career path that a challenge in a class led me to. My positive relationship with a psychology professor whose class I was having problems with, lead me to this path I never thought of before the challenge came.


I will talk more about challenges and positive relationships here in the future.





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