What Inspires You?

What Inspires You?

This is Crowe’s Crossing Park on Hwy 13 just south of Osceola, Missouri

I’m learning as I rack up more time in the driver’s seat of BESSie, a 2008 Winnebago View, to take time to enjoy the landscapes and wildlife. From Missouri to Iowa in early fall the leaves are vivid shades of orange red and various shades of yellow and gold. I was on my way to Ft. Dodge to speak at a writers conference. It seems appropriate to include you, another audience, and let the presentation live on.


My family and friends are my “why.”

Travel is in my blood. Growing up, we wore a path through the middle of the US. When I read my dad’s diary, I found that we went from southern Minnesota to southern Texas three times in eight weeks. I love sunrises and vibrant landscapes. I love rolling down the road with a great song or podcast playing. But travel is not my why. Family and friends are my “why.”


The baby girl in the tutu is the sweetest and amazingly tenacious

The little girl in the tutu is Clahra, affectionately known as Gramma’s Sweet Baby Girl. She has a chromosomal abnormality called KAT6B. Look it up. The short story here is that she faces lifelong physical and developmental challenges. She stole my heart! Not just because she is my granddaughter with a sweet disposition, but because she is tenacious. She works and works to sit and to use her hands. Her disabilities are truly challenges to her. She expects that she can accomplish what others do. She shows up ready to work!


This is Gary. He told me that I could talk about him and wasn’t there to defend himself.

Gary is a brilliant journalist and writer of history and science fiction.

He is a brilliant journalist and writer of history and science fiction, though I’ve never read his science fiction, and only a fraction of his other writings. Mostly, I’ve read newspaper articles and a couple of self-published booklets about the history of Southeast Arizona. He’s been writing a book for 47 years. Okay, he has been working on writing many books over the past 47 years. He’s been writing to create books for 47 years, but he’s never published those books. It’s never good enough. Something blocks the way before the book is finished.


Why do you think he has never published his books? Are his fears real?

Can you identify with Gary’s road blocks?

Can you identify with Gary’s road blocks? Take a moment right now, grab and pen and paper, then write down your roadblocks and your why.

What did you come up with? I’m sure you have done something similar to this exercise before. Do your roadblocks change or are they constant? If they change, how often? What triggers a change in why? Do roadblocks change your whys?


Elizabeth Gilbert, author of “Eat, Pray, Love.” admits to being afraid and talks about her roadblock.


My father’s words are perhaps more relevant today than yesterday.

When my dad died, his friend gave the eulogy and compared my dad,

Harold to John Wayne. He wasn’t John Wayne to me. I was afraid of him. He didn’t have many patience with a little girl who cried and was timid. I hear his words today. The phrase that is most helpful is one that I dreaded to hear then. Then, it seemed cold and uncaring. Now, the words are the tough love that is necessary to move me into action. He would often say, “Get up, dust yourself off and put one foot in front of the other.” They are such simple words, yet when I’m in a funk and feeling sorry for myself, these words bring me to my feet. Thanks, dad!


I’d been getting ready since for the trip to Ft. Dodge for weeks. The best of intentions… right?

  • My brother, Darrell helped me prepare the RV.
  • Visited Mechanics
  • Tire Shop
  • Replaced lights and power plug

I was getting ready. Did I sound prepared? Life has a way of getting you to look at things differently. I did take the steps to get BESSie up and running and found something to put into motion but I didn’t feel ready… I thought about backing out. The trip would be expensive (My motorcoach requires premium gasoline that had doubled in price over the past 18-months.)


In the days leading up to my trip.

  • My sister-in-law in Missouri, where I had been staying for the past month or so, was diagnosed with cancer.
  • My granddaughter had surgery.
  • My son had a car accident.
  • My main source of income was suddenly defunded .
  • AND
  • I came to the abrupt realization on the way here that night temperatures would fall below freezing. I had to winterize the RV at the Iowa Welcome Center in 40 degree weather with lots of wind. It wasn’t ideal!

Kids will take a chance even if they don’t have all the answers.

British author Sir Ken Robinson speaker, and international advisor on education said that kids take chances. They have answers, even when they really don’t know whether the answer is right. It sometimes opens a whole new way of thinking. I loved his thoughts about how children are so creative and bold.


Managing hundreds of live productions have taught me that action always looks better from the outside than the inside. The team putting together events is painfully aware of all the things that should be better, and all the things that didn’t get done or didn’t get done right. The audience is not aware of the chaos, the sleepless nights, the quarrels among team members. The audience is easier to impress. Action is often messy. There is never a right time to change. Just move. “Just do the things you know to do.”


 My momma’s voice still influences me today. One of the things she repeated (over and over) was to do the things you know to do. “Do the things you know TO do.” Sounds so simple, right? Yet in the moments when I’m wondering what the next step is, this simple statement is profound. Don’t mistake Momma’s words for a common phrase, “Do the things you know HOW to do.” In other words, you may not know how to do the things that you know that you are called to do. Don’t get stuck because you can’t see what is coming. Put one foot in front of the other. Find one thing that you can do. Some small step.

Here’s a few steps to consider when reaching for success:

  • Read Elizabeth Gilbert’s lessons. “Your Elusive Creative Genius”
  • Use Tools- How many have a vision book? Do you have daily affirmations?
  • Find support
  • Or HIRE a COACH (Contact me! I would love to talk with you about your business!

I’m Margaret Dillard. Travel is in my blood. I love sunrises and vibrant landscapes. I love rolling down the road with a great song or podcast playing. But travel is not my why. Family and friends and today you are my WHY

Stay in touch… I’m writing a book!

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