Where does all that inspiration come from?

2016-02-22

Feeling relaxed, you sit comfortably on your office chair, with a cup of coffee or tea by the side of your computer, then you suddenly start writing passionately. I guess this has to do with an inspiration that comes from within!

I have often asked myself ”how do I suddenly get inspired to do something creative in my research?”, while at times not even a simple idea can be thought. I realized that this happens when I feel motivated to be creative and start something new, yet inspiration is not there.

There is something special about the Scandinavian system of doing research. I personally think that it lets you find inspiration more than any other research system. Yet, it can also let you drown. It’s a system that I often hear comes along well with the idiom ”this is a double-edged sword” system.

Being inspired to act is the key point that can move you forward in research. But what happens when you are a young researcher? One that keeps dreaming to get a title that extends your name?

In a Scandinavian research system, I often find young researchers, most likely doctoral students being left alone, thrown into a world of scientific readings, with a very weak strength from a hand to guide them through all these readings. But, what is most interesting is that the Scandinavian system, is a system that allows you to open up your thinking and find inspiration that leads to creativity, which often leaves your colleagues at the seminars speechless. However, it also nurtures isolation and inferiority.

While there are many processes that can easily trigger inspiration, such as setting goals, being well-rested, reading magazines that are often out of your scope; human beings belong to social entities that also need a richer mind to nurture inspiration, more often than we think.

I vividly remember the landscape of Mount Everest, when a very dear colleague of mine once printed it in a picture and made two points on it. She said: ”in this academic process, I am here now, at the north base camp”. In just two years she said: ”I shall reach the highest peak on Earth”. She made this other point as the goal she was going to achieve in her research. While this landscape never got away from my mind, I noticed that climbing from the north base camp to the highest peak, she struggled more than ever. Apparently, just as much as I did.

I strongly believe that this is because all of the previous climbers, who are in your surroundings, are somehow too relaxed and never come to check on you when you are trying to pass a crevasse, but they come when you have already passed it. Hey, a crevasse is pretty dangerous!