Tag Archives: anatomy of inspiration

Anatomy of Inspiration: Interview with Laura Miller – the Founder of Secret Agent L Project

Posted on 12. Oct, 2011 by .


laura-millerLaura Miller aka Secret Agent L is the founder of Secret Agent L Project,  the movement which encourages people to go and do little acts of kindness to brighten up the day  for  others. The SAL Project  has blossomed into an international phenomenon of anonymous acts of kindness, with over 1,800 Affiliated Agents sharing in the fun and selflessness all over the world.  Some of the countries that have participated in the project include Japan, Germany, Canada, Denmark, the Netherlands, and Australia. You can follow the Laura and SAL Project on Twitter and Facebook.

G: Tell us a little about your project?

rsz_photo20L: The Secret Agent L project basically works as a collaborative effort of people all over the world who really want to make a difference through kindness.  I started this project back in July of 2009 at the prompting of a friend who was out of state and was having a birthday. She said, "You know, Laura, I think that birthdays aren’t any fun, and I don’t like them. I just don’t want to have a birthday." I tend to disagree with that because I think birthdays are fantastic.  I told her that I was going to send her a little gift for her birthday, and she said, "No, no, no, no. Don’t send me anything. Go and do a random act of kindness in my name. You can call yourself ‘Secret Agent L, All-Around Swell Chick and Girl Spy.’" I was like, "Oh, well, I love this. This is fun."  I just ran with it.  I decided to do a little anonymous act of kindness, take photos, call it a secret mission, put it up on a blog, and spread the word via social media.


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Anatomy of Inspiration: Interview with Lori Deschene – the Founder of “Tiny Buddha”

Posted on 29. Sep, 2010 by .


lori I am very happy to present you Lori Deschene who is the Founder of Tiny Buddha, one of the most followed inspirational projects’ on Twitter and Facebook. Tiny Buddha features the stories about happiness, motivation, inspiration, love, relationships, meaning, possibilities, and mindfulness. According to Lori, it is about stepping back, taking time to reflect on simple wisdom, and learning new ways to apply it to our complex lives–complete with responsibilities, struggles, dreams, and relationships.

G: Tell us a little about your project?

tinybuddhaL: I run tinybuddha.com, a website that focuses on ways to apply wisdom to everyday life. I also maintain a Twitter account, @tinybuddha and a Facebook page that provides a daily quote and links to blog. I started Tiny Buddha because I wanted to do something meaningful with my time online. As a writer for the web, I was accustomed to spending all my time plugged in. And yet very little of my writing meant something to me personally. I wanted to make a difference in other people’s lives, and I felt I could do that most effectively if I was honest about my own struggles with mindfulness and letting go.

That’s what I do on my website: share what I’ve learned and continue to learn about being present and happy. I also publish posts from Tiny Buddha readers, highlighting a wide range of different perspectives. I by no means know it all, but I know we’re all in it together, and that’s the most important thing.

G: What advice could you give for people thinking about starting their own project?

L:Take it one step at a time. If you focus on all the things that could go wrong or be difficult, you’re likely to psych yourself before you get started. If you just take the first step, you’ll be able to learn as you go. You will learn!  Despite being a writer with four years experience producing content for websites, I am not the most knowledgeable with the technical side of things. There’s a ton I didn’t know and don’t know still. Luckily, I have people who help me, filling in the gaps where I’m less knowledgeable; and by virtue of asking questions, I learn a little more every day.


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Anatomy of Inspiration: The ‘Thank You’ Project ‎"

Posted on 22. Sep, 2010 by .


I am very happy to present you an inspiring interview with Julia, the founder of   “Thank You” Project ,  which aims to share the  positivity  and thankfulness around the world.  You can follow Julia on Facebook.

note3 G: Tell us a little about your project?

J: The "Thank You" Project is the result of a sudden unstoppable desire to share my thankful theory with the world – I believe that positive thinking, optimistic attitude and thankful mindset go a long way. My project is a personal web based challenge where I have to update my blog every single day with things I’m thankful for. It’s hard for me to tell what exactly was the starting point of it all, but it seems to me the thankfulness I felt to certain people and for certain episodes of my life just started building up, and I needed an outlet for it.

G: How did you start your project?

J: I just went for it! Got an idea, immediately created a blog and told everyone about it and what my goal was, so that I didn’t have a chance not to follow through with it. I remember thinking a few days into it “Oh my God, what did I only get myself into?” Looking back at it now, it was so worth it – definitely one of the best decisions I made in 2009!

note1 G: What advice could you give for people starting a project?

J: Just do it :) Remember that “whether you believe you can do a thing or not, you are right.” I really like this Henry Ford quote!

G: What was the most inspiring moment on the project?

J: I think it was some of those first emails and comments from strangers I got. Positive feedback and encouraging words kept me going.

G: What were the biggest obstacles on the project and how did you overcome them?

J: The biggest obstacle is having to find the time each day to update the blog. Considering I have a day job, a social life and enough of various daily responsibilities, it hasn’t always been an easy task. To make sure I don’t sabotage my own project, I had to learn to plan ahead and, say, post in the morning before work if I knew I had things planned for the evening right after work.

Number two challenge is gathering the inspiration for a sincere thank you on those bad days we all get sometimes. And again, one way to overcome it is just do it! Sit back, relax, reflect on the day – there’s always something to be thankful for, believe me!

notes2 G: What do you do when you need  inspiration?

J: I have been incredibly lucky to have acquired my own audience in the face of fellow thankful people who have all been very encouraging and supportive, and their support has always been my biggest source of inspiration, so I don’t have to do much but just read their thankful thoughts and kind feedback :)

G: What do you think is the best way to inspire others?

J:  When a person does what they love and believe in, and are genuine about it, it shows, and it’s definitely inspiring! So, in a nutshell, the best way to inspire others is by being your best self.

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Anatomy of Inspiration: Sandy & The 1000 Paper Cranes

Posted on 16. Sep, 2010 by .


I have an honour to present this special and very inspiring person today. It’s Sandy. Her project "Sandy & The 1000 Paper Cranes" captures the real human spirit and transfers it into the 1000 of good deeds. You can follow Sandy on Twitter or Facebook.

G: Tell us a little about your project?

100_1516S: “Sandy & the 1000 Paper Cranes” was inspired by the children’s book  ” Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes” by Eleanor Coerr. Sadako was a young girl at the time of the bombings of Hiroshima in World War II. She ends up getting very sick several years later due to the radiation she was exposed to. After developing leukaemia and coming to live in a nursing home, Sadako decided she would fold 1000 paper cranes in order to be granted one wish. To live. (In Japanese culture, folklore says that a person who folds 1000 paper cranes, a symbol for peace, would be granted a wish. The number 1000 comes from the number of years they believed a crane could live.) Sadly Sadko lost her battle with cancer before she was able to finish her cranes. Her family and friends rallied together to fold the remaining amount, and she was laid to rest with all of her cranes.

I was both saddened and inspired by the task Sadako set out to complete. I wanted to do something similar to that in order to promote peace and positivity. So I decided to not only fold the 1000 cranes but place a positive word on them, “releasing” them somewhere so that a stranger would find it. My hope is that upon finding it, the person would feel happy and hopefully pay it forward.

G: When did you realize that this is something you really want to do?

S: I realized this project was something I was interested in doing after I read the book a little over a year ago (Summer 2008). I spent the next year compiling the list of unique words. I figured that I wouldn’t start my crane mission until I had 1000 words so that I knew it was doable.

G: What was the most inspiring moment on the project?

S: My project is still young, but the most inspiring moment so far has been seeing the overwhelmingly positive feedback from people. Although I have yet to hear anything from a person who has found a crane (as of the beginning of September 2010), I still feel as though my project has helped to inspire other people into doing their own project or, at the very least, has inspired a bit of happiness.

G: What were the biggest obstacles on the project and how did you overcome them?

crane41wholeS: The biggest obstacle in my project so far has been getting the list of words together. It definitely got  to a point where I wasn’t sure if I would be able to get 1000 unique and positive words. I was searching endlessly for synonyms for words I already had on my list in hopes of stumbling across a new one. Thankfully my dedication paid off because I finally was able to get a complete list (only a year after starting it!) I thought folding the cranes would be my biggest obstacle but it has turned out to be the easiest part.

G: What do you do when you need  inspiration?

S: I find checking out other inspiring projects keeps me motivated. It’s exciting to hear about all the wonderful things that other people are coming up with to boost positivity. It also helps me to look at some of the responses I’ve received. Reading an email from a stranger telling me how they want to start their own positivity project helps remind me why I am doing my own.

G: What are the main places that you look for inspiration?

S: My favourite inspiring projects are:

The ‘Thank You’ Project ; Secret Agent L; Operation NICE; Positively Present; Tiny Buddha.


G: What are your top inspirations?

S:  My favourite inspirations are :

Inspirational Movies: Pay It Forward;                                                                                                               Inspirational Books: The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin, Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortensen;                                                                                                                                                          Inspirational People: Gretchen Rubin, Greg Mortensen;

G: What do you think is the best way to inspire others? How to inspire others?

100_1593 S: The best way to inspire others is to be genuine. Don’t try to be something you’re not. If your project is one that can be done on a large scale, enlist the help of people who have shown interest. If people appreciate your project, they’ll want to help you in any way they can. Likewise, when someone comes to you for help, in the spirit of inspiring, it’s best to help them, too. It’s amazing how far a little bit of help can go.


G: What is your formula for living happy and inspiring life?

S: My “formula” for being happy is to do the things I like doing and remember to make time for myself. I try to be the type of person I would want to be friends with.

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