Do you know how there are some people who “get” who you are immediately and then become your cheerleaders? Frank Bonkowski is one of my cheerleaders and he inspires me to do my best. We met through cyberspace when he contacted me via my Self Esteem Experts website. We clicked. His work focusing on Happiness After Midlife – spoke to me since this is certainly my goal personally and professionally! Here’s what Frank shared with me about living an inspired life:
Susyn: What does living an inspired life mean to you?
Frank: Susyn, I want to thank you for asking me this question. I had never thought before about living an inspired life or what it actually meant. So the first thing I did was look up the meaning of “inspired” in the dictionary. According to Dictionary.com, it means “aroused, animated, or imbued with the spirit to do something, by or as if by supernatural or divine influence.” An example would be “an inspired poet.”
I then started thinking about my own inspired life – one that is animated or imbued with the spirit to do something – in connection with all the people and ideas that have inspired me to be a better person, a better teacher, a better parent, and a better communicator.
Susyn: In your daily life, how do you nourish your inspired life?
Frank: Since I view an inspired life in connection with important people in my life, I always take the best of who they are and what they offer me. I’m constantly learning from the hidden gems of greatness in each of these people.
Susyn: What is your biggest challenge in living an inspired life and how do you approach this challenge?
Frank: Again, since living an inspired life for me relates to people in my life, my biggest obstacle in achieving it is surrounding myself with the right people. I’m talking about people who desire to grow, learn and share with others, just like I do. I’m talking about people who don’t take themselves too seriously and who have a sense of playfulness. I’m talking about people who share in my vision of leaving the world a better place after all is said and done.
Susyn: Who/What has influenced you in living your inspired life?
Frank: My parents are the first source of inspiration for me. They showed me the meaning of unconditional love and provided me eight years of Jesuit education, founded on hard work, critical thinking and fundamental Christian beliefs and values. This has enabled me to become a better person.
Second, I think of Aurele Daoust, founder of College Marie in Montreal, He showed me the importance of doing my best in the classroom and being close to students. This has enabled me to become a better teacher.
Third, Jacqueline, my wife, comes to mind. She showed me how important it is to be attentive and loving to your children, even into their young adult years. This has enabled me to realize that I can be a better parent.
Fourth, Dr. Fred, an experienced coach as well as a colleague and friend, showed me the importance of using language powerfully and of always surpassing my own expectations. This has enabled me to be a better communicator.
I could go on and on, but before I stop I would like to mention you, Susyn, as an inspirational figure for me. Your message of peace, happiness and joy that you constantly share with others is an inspiration for me. This has enabled me to continue sharing on my website my own form of positivity, enthusiasm and sense of well being to help midlifers and beyond create an inspired life for themselves.
Susyn: What are you working on now?
Frank: I’m in the process of re-working and re-branding my website, Happiness-After-Midlife, to focus on education and online learning geared to midlifers and beyond. The site will focus on five main areas: entrepreneurship, finances, health and fitness, lifestyle design, and personal development.
I’m developing a catalog of e-courses that I either produce in collaboration with experts or redistribute stare of the art programs that already exist in each of the above-mentioned areas.
Susyn: What words of wisdom do you have for someone who desires to live their inspired life vision?
Frank: That’s a tall order. I don’t pretend to have the answers. I know that I am responsibe for the life I live. I also firmly believe I have the potential to create the life I want. It all begins with clearly stated intentions. I know that if I share those intentions with a trusted individual or group good things will happen. I also believe that if I actually work at putting my intentions into action I will achieve the results I desire, however simple or grand they may be.
Learn more about Frank and his work at Happiness After Midlife