Nurturing Your Active Dreams

What is a dream?

It’s an interesting question, because there are two definitions: the first refers to a semi-conscious state we achieve (hopefully) during sleep each night. The second refers to something more active; something that’s rooted in mindful thought, combined with hope and intent and perseverance.

For example, one could say they had a dream about starting their own business and mean that they literally dreamt of a business startup during sleep, but it’s not what they actually want.

Someone else could utter the exact same sentence and mean that it’s been their absolute life’s need and want and hope to open their own business, and that they are actively working on what it takes to get there.

Two different meanings when we talk about dreams—we want to discuss active dreaming: the second kind of dream.

How does one nurture their active dreams? We have a few ideas:

Purposeful Guidance

We don’t mean guidance from another; we’re talking about literally guiding your dream to fruition, like raising a child. No one will do it better than you, so trust yourself to know that you have the power to create the currently intangible.

We all have the ability to take an idea and turn it into reality!

Unwavering Hope

Hope is requirement when it comes to dreams. You must believe in the possibility of success–to have faith that if you work hard enough to achieve your dreams, that the universe will eventually provide because it has to. Because you’re forcing your dreams in the direction of creation, and never giving up.

Lack of hope breeds negativity, and negatively will suffocate your dreams faster than anything else. You must remain positive in knowing that you’re capable.

Hard Work

You gotta work at those dreams!

Arduous work and a lot of elbow grease is what gets the job done, and those who are willing to put in the time and effort and keep going despite everything will be more successful in bringing their active dreams to reality.

Good things generally take time to develop.

Unparalleled Perseverance

(Otherwise known as resiliency and grit.)

Perseverance is the singular difference between those who strive for more and want something really bad, and those who manage to actually attain it. The ability to let setbacks roll off their shoulders and view minute failures as stepping stones is key to dream nurturing.

But there’s more.

Possessing the ability to focus on a long-term outcome and create a life that’s conducive to its success is a major game-changer when it comes to achieving dreams.

Psychologist Angela Lee Duckworth speaks on the importance of grit (perseverance) in relation to lifelong success in achieving one’s dreams; you can view her TED Talk below.

So what’s holding you back? What’s propelling you ahead?

Identifying what motivates and inspires you to keep moving forward with your dreams is a great way to not lose sight of the end game: those dreams becoming reality. Need some inspiration? Join us on May 6th to talk more about dreams and how people achieve them.

Your tomorrow starts TODAY.

Purpose, Motivation, Action

We’re 7 months away from Winspiration Day 2018, and our event planning team has been meeting to discuss possible themes for next year and what we want to inspire within our Vancouver community!

One of the possible threads we’ve been exploring is the idea of purpose, motivation, and action—the linear line of mindful choice that leads to inspiration. Let’s explore this idea a little further:


Bringing an idea to reality is what we consider action. Whether that idea is to unload your dishwasher, sign up for a class, or start volunteering, action is what propels you to go further. Nothing can begin without it; action is the beginning.

In a past blog post, we wrote about the common misconception that motivation inspires actions. In fact, action is what prompts what comes next:


The motivation to do something or make a change comes from action. You begin to do something, is makes you feel good in some way, and that motivates you to continue or take it to another level.

The key is to start. If you don’t start, nothing is accomplished.


Once you’ve acted and felt motivated to continue, then comes purpose. For example, say you decide to further your education, so you sign up for fall classes at your community college.

That’s action.

Then, during those classes, you meet others and develop relationships with your instructors and love your environment, and all this prompts you to finish the semester and register for another one.

You’re now motivated.

And because you’re motivated to finish school, you can see the light at the end of the tunnel—you’re working towards something for a reason.

That’s purpose.

Here’s another example: you decide to do laundry because you have nothing to wear (action). This leads to cleaning your bathroom and making your bed (motivation), which results in spending a couple of hours on housework so that your entire home is clean for the weekend (purpose).

In your own life, how have you used action, motivation, and purpose (whether it be intentionally or unintentionally) to propel yourself to complete a project, strive towards a better life, or inspire yourself to follow your dreams?

This is one of the concepts we want to touch base on, on Winspiration Day 2018. Whether it be community, family, or employment-focused, we want to hear your stories.

Purpose, motivation, Action. What’s yours?

Finding Personal Inspiration in Seasonal Change

Autumn is (almost) upon us, and the cooler weather and warmer colours often produces change in mood and outlook. For many, it’s a positive change: September is correlated with crisp mornings, back-to-school excitement, and some much-needed coziness.

But for equally as many, fall may feel a little depressing. The sunlight is a little scarcer, days get shorter, and not to quote Game of Thrones on purpose, but winter is coming.

For those of us who need to actively look for personal inspiration during these autumn months, here are some ideas that may help:

Change Within Ourselves is Reflected Within the Seasons

As seasonal changes occur, so do changes within ourselves. It’s interesting, because each season can be perceived as representing what we experience within the seasons of our lives. The late and great American writer Henry David Thoreau described it best:

“Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of the earth…things do not change; we change.” –On Walden Pond

This knowledge provides us with an excellent excuse to look within ourselves and find what emotions may be present. If seasonal changes are something that we perceive as stressful, then perhaps they represent stresses that were already present and bubbling to the forefront.

Instead of hunkering down or running, take this as an opportunity to face these stresses and try to minimize them.

The End is Also the Beginning

However we choose to look at the end of the year, it’s helpful to perceive it as a beginning, not actually an end—as an opportunity for change, because the world around us is also in flux.

Why not join in a conscious way that’s healthy and purposeful?

It’s the end of summer warmth, but the beginning of autumn’s fresh, crispness! Challenge yourself to find the good in the new season, and to recognize what this season represents for various animal and plant species.

“Autumn is the mellower season, and what we lose in flowers we more than gain in fruits.” –Samuel Butler

The Growing Darkness is Necessary for Reflection

It is a fact that without the dark, we cannot appreciate the light. When autumn brings shorter days and more darkness, take advantage of it! Interesting and unexpected things happen in the dark—there’s more time for planning, strategizing, and project completion.

Use the shorter days to your advantage!

By the same token, you can choose to mindfully slow down, hibernate a bit, and recharge. If your days are traditionally crazy and full of stress, then allow yourself to take a step back and enjoy the early shadows that autumn affords us.

If you think you’ll still have trouble with the seasonal changes that fall brings, visit our website to drum up some inspiration. Winspiration Day 2018 is on May 7th—sign up for our newsletter for more information.



The Difference Between Motivation and Inspiration

Winspiration, is, of course, a play on the word inspiration. Inspiration is something that is difficult to cultivate yourself, though, which is why it’s so important to find a local community of like-minded people (your tribe) who can help you to recognize inspiration when it makes an appearance.

Inspiration is also closely tied to motivation. Often, the words ‘inspire’ and ‘motivate’ are exchanged closely, and although they are similar in terms of positive action, they are also intrinsically different.


Well, one would have a challenging time inspiring his or herself, but can be self-motivated. But here’s the thing: motivation comes from within and builds with action. In other words, action comes first, and then passion follows.

Cultivating Motivation

“Once something is a passion, the motivation is there.” –Michael Schumacher

For example, picture yourself cleaning your home or car or office. You start the process out of necessity, but you keep it up and gain momentum—motivation—by experiencing the positive results of your work.

If you can’t relate to this scenario, then how about the example of writing an essay or completing a work project.

We may be excited to begin, but our motivation for finishing comes from within: we begin working and are encouraged by our progress and/or we see the light at the end of the tunnel and become motivated to finish so we can be done with the work.

How It’s Connected

This year’s Winspiration Day was full of positive thoughts, ideas, and personal stories communicated to us by our speakers and hosts. Although we felt motivated at the end of the day, only a percentage of us started something because of that feeling of motivation. When that happened, the feeling gave way to actual motivation, which helped us complete the tasks we set out to do.

The people who felt motivated but did not act upon this feeling never got started. In not acting, those of us who left that day feeling high on life and inspiration did not get to experience the actual motivation that was experienced by those who put feelings into action and received the subsequent reward(s).

Bottom Line

Our advice is this: just start. Just do. Just go and go and soon you’ll want to go farther and faster and you’ll become stronger and happier. If you never start, you can’t finish. If you never begin, you’ll never experience actual motivation.

You make a choice, and then that choice leads to motivation through action.


Starting a Conversation with a Homeless Person

On Winspiration Day Vancouver this year (May 7th), we had the privilege of being spoken to by Trish Garner, Community Organizer for the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition. Her words, as one would imagine, were powerful but simple: talk to a homeless person. Start a conversation. Ask them their name, where they came from, and how they’re doing.

The simple act of treating a homeless person as a human being can evoke incredible and unexpected reactions. Many people don’t realize that for someone living on the street, questions or conversations about their well-being and who they are and what they’re interested in may not occur for months or even years.

When’s the last time that man on the corner of your street uttered his name to anyone? Find out!

We take our friends’ and families’ and coworkers’ interest in us for granted, and because it’s something we don’t typically go without, we don’t notice when others don’t receive the same privilege.

Trish urged us to start a conversation, and to not walk by without making eye contact. In Vancouver (especially in the Downtown Eastside), it’s easy to ignore others’ suffering because our city is busy, and as locals, we become desensitized to the presence of those without homes.

But we need to be inclusive. We’re all people. We all want and deserve the same basic life essentials, such as safety, shelter, food, and social outlets. There are programs in place to provide our community‘s growing homeless population with a few of these things, but having a conversation with someone who hasn’t been able to tell their story is a priceless and unique gift that is offered far less than it should be.

Trish recently reached out to take her challenge further:

“After starting a conversation with a homeless person, if you want to do more, I invite you to dinner through our Connections program where we treat you and someone in poverty to dinner together. The goal is not to help them. The goal is to know them in a small way, and to know yourself in a different way. Connections between people is what life is all about. Make a connection across the line. And let yourself be moved to action.”

So let’s not forget what Trish asked of us on May 7th—let’s actively ensure we all start a conversation—the conversation. The only conversation that might matter to someone who is desperate to just be treated as someone.

Get chatting, Vancouver—you’ve been challenged. Start a conversation with a homeless person, and if you feel so inclined, take it a step further by checking out the Connections program offered by the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition.


27 Ways to Find Inspiration This Summer

Winspiration Day 2017 might be over, but that doesn’t mean the inspiration needs to cease! How are we applying all of those incredible ideas and theories and inspiring stories we heard on May 7th to our everyday lives? How can we live with practical purpose for the next season of life?

For those of us who might need another little push before the summer formally commences, here are 27 ways to find inspiration throughout the summer:

Find Inspiration Once a Day:

  • Incorporate a 5-minute meditation into your day
  • Practice deep breathing
  • Ask yourself what you’re grateful for
  • Remind yourself you are a being of love
  • Spend time in silence
  • Dance to music for 5 minutes

Find Inspiration Once a Week:

  • Watch a TED Talk
  • Search up inspirational quotes
  • Go for a hike by yourself
  • Walk alone
  • Complete a 30-minute guided meditation
  • Attend a yoga class
  • Talk to a homeless person

Find Inspiration Once a Month:

  • Don’t talk for an entire day
  • Fast on water and herbal tea
  • Complete one home improvement project (big or small)
  • Read a book from beginning to end
  • Have a completely screen-free day
  • Treat yourself to something indulgent

Find Inspiration Once this Summer:

  • Identify what is holding you back from living your dreams, and then take steps to let that go
  • Travel by yourself
  • Write a bucket list
  • Create a vision board
  • Create a bullet journal
  • Volunteer somewhere
  • Create a photo book using images you’ve taken yourself on posted on your Instagram page
  • Apply for your dream job

We hope these ideas help you find inspiration throughout your summer; please feel free to leave a comment about your experiences below! Check out our website for new tidbits of information about Winspiration Day Vancouver 2018, and remember to stay social with us throughout the summer on Facebook and Twitter.

Happy summer, Vancouver!


Meet Catherine Roscoe Barr and Jackson Wu!

Friends, we are ONE WEEK AWAY from Winspiration Day Vancouver! While the event is going to be nothing less than memorable and amazing, we want to introduce two more of our speakers, who are incredible and inspiring individuals.

So…meet Catherine Roscoe Barr and Jackson Wu!

Catherine Roscoe Barr

Catherine Roscoe Barr

We’re so excited to have Catherine Roscoe Barr participating in this year’s event!

Catherine is a Vancouver-based wellness coach, keynote speaker, fitness, food and travel writer, entrepreneur, and founder of The Life Delicious.

As our closing keynote speaker, her passion is teaching leaders how to practice self-care strategies that fill their batteries so full the overflow transforms their businesses, connections and lives.

Before settling on the West Coast, she lived in Sydney, Toronto, Oregon, Montana, and practically everywhere in Alberta. She can be found jogging with her adorable dog, dining with her fabulous husband, or voraciously reading anywhere comfy. Hot news for Catherine is this: she’s just announced an impending arrival of Baby Barr, come November!

Visit for details on private coaching, wellness retreats and corporate workshops.

Jackson Wu

Jackson Wu

Jackson Wu is a pianist and fifth year student studying at the University of British Columbia. He is deeply passionate about music, and strongly believes in the power of music as a form of inspiration for its ability to cross cultural boundaries and spark emotion.

Apart from music, he enjoys spreading positivity to others in everyday life. It is his life long mission to ensure that those around him consistently feel in a safe and comfortable environment to be themselves.

Jackson is not only going to speak to Winspiration Day Vancouver attendees on Sunday; he’ll also be dazzling our senses with music—and one very exciting performance that we promise you won’t be able to predict!

There are a few seats left for this event, so snag yours today; they’re $25 and available on Eventbrite. If you aren’t sure about whether you can make it or not, don’t worry—we’ll be selling tickets at the door, too. (Doors open at 1:30pm.)

Also, remember that attendees are going to receive fresh pressed juice from Commodity Juicery, healthy snacks, and a ton of inspiration from our speakers.

See you at The Westside Grand (pictured in blog’s main photo) in Vancouver on Sunday, friends! Be inspired! Be inspiring!

Tickets are here:

Meet Michael Cameron and Trish Garner!

Friends, we are less than two weeks away from Winspiration Day Vancouver! While the event in its entirety is going to be awesome, we want to introduce more of our speakers, who are incredible and inspiring individuals.

So…meet Michael Cameron and Trish Garner!

Michael Cameron

Michael Cameron head shot

Mike Cameron will be this year’s opening keynote speaker, and his story is emotional and full of inspiration. He’s the CEO of Axiom Mortgage Solutions, one of Canada’s top mortgage brokerage firms and a professional speaker. He is an avid climber (both rock and ice) an Ironman, a yogi, a runner and most importantly, a human being. As a serial self improvement enthusiast, Mike’s mettle was tested when he suffered a catastrophic loss in 2015.

He will share his inspiring tales of triumph and tragedy, will teach you resilience, and ultimately lead you to understand that when something’s gotta change…it might be you.

Trish Garner

Trish Garner head shot

Trish Garner is the provincial organizer for the BCPRC, and a “tea swilling Brit” with a passion for social justice.

As the Community Organizer of the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition, a broad-based network of over 400 organizations throughout BC, she focuses on communications, outreach and community engagement to raise awareness about the root causes of poverty and inequality, and how our community can collectively tackle them.

Trish has a PhD in gender, sexuality and women’s studies from SFU and continues to work on LGBTQ issues. She lives with her partner and their three young children in East Vancouver.

Winspiration Day Vancouver is going to be a fantastic experience; don’t miss out! We have a few seats left to sell, so snag yours today; they’re $25 and available on Eventbrite here:

ALSO: we have a surprise for you—a musical one! Want to know what it is? You have to be an the event to find out! You’ll also be able to sample yummy fresh-pressed juice from Vancouver’s own Commodity Juicery at the event, too! (Side-note: Commodity Juicery will be showcasing their products at TED Vancouver on April 26th!)


See? There’s no excuse to not come–this event is going to ROCK. To read more about the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition, please visit their website at

See you on May 7th, guys! Be inspired! Be inspiring!



Winspiration Day Vancouver Speaker Abel Koka

It’s less than 4 weeks until Winspiration Day, and we’re so excited for this year’s line-up of speakers! One such speaker is Abel Koka, who’s inspiring story takes him from his hometown of Tanzania to graduate school at Vancouver’s very own University of British Columbia (UBC).

Abel Koka Vancouver

Here is Abel’s story:

Abel Koka’s education journey has not been an easy one. Coming from a poor family on a wildly different continent than this one, Abel has had to overcome many hurdles to chase and realize his educational dreams—yet he’s doing just that.

Abel is passionate about community development, and has volunteered for Restless Development, READ International, and Hopeful Futures Foundation. After completing his Master’s degree here in Canada, Abel is looking forward to combining his legal training and forest management knowledge to help impoverished communities in Tanzania.

We’re so pumped to chat with Abel and hear what inspires him. This year’s message is Be Inspired! Be Inspiring! We feel like that’s exactly what Abel is doing, so he’s the perfect feature for this week’s blog on inspiration, how to become inspired, and how to pass that feeling along to others.

Here are some important details about this year’s Winspiration Day Vancouver event:

  • Where: The Westside Grand
  • When: May 7th from 2-5pm
  • What: 3 hours of inspirational talk, music, and food
  • Why: Because inspiration is everywhere; you just have to learn how to find it and hold on tight

Tickets for Winspiration Day Vancouver are available on Eventbrite HERE. They’re $25, and include food and drink from local community sponsors, such as Commodity Juicery. There will be door prizes, incredible music, and amazing people who are there to help YOU find your best self through inspiration.

We’re so blessed to live in a community that radiates love and light. See you May 7th! Be prepared for awesomeness…

Why Your Teenager Should Attend Winspiration Day

Friends, Winspiration Day is only 5 weeks away, and this year is going to be a stellar experience! There are many types of people who love to attend this event, but we think this year’s event (being held at The Westside Grand in Vancouver) would be great to bring your teenager to.

Here’s why:


Here’s the deal: with all the ways that kids can hole up in their bedrooms and communicate with friends through devices and electronics, it’s important to try and convince your teenager to build social skills by actually talking and listening to another human being.

With so many negative role models in the media, wouldn’t it be fantastic to introduce your son or daughter to some positive ones? Not only that, but our hosts and speakers are local and part of your teenager’s community.

It doesn’t get any better than that!


If your teenager is graduating this year, chances are they could use a little direction. Maybe your son or daughter will be inspired by our younger speakers and a spark of innovation and creativity will be ignited!

You’ll never know unless they attend.

Stress Management

Although sometimes difficult for parents to relate to, our teenagers are very stressed. There are more diagnosed cases of anxiety among high school students than ever before, partly because of the pressures created by the new digital age we’re living in.

Imagine how many kids go undiagnosed, too!

Attending an event like Winspiration Day can have many positive effects among those who need a little stress reduction in their lives. We promise lots of healthy love, light, and laughs–and that’s exactly what today’s teenager needs.


The community of wellness professionals in Vancouver is amazing–why not let a few of them take the reins for a couple of hours and see what difference that positivity can make on your teenager?

In an environment that won’t feel forced or stock or predictable, your teen could learn some valuable lessons about self-love and the value of a healthy community.

Purchase tickets for you and your teenager for only $25 each through Eventbrite today–we’re only selling 150 this year, and they’re going fast. For more information on Winspiration Day Vancouver 2017, visit our website at

See you May 7th, Vancouver. Be inspired…be inspiring!