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Many people set new personal and professional goals for themselves as the calendar turned to 2024 last month. This month is when most of us will seek inspiration to continue to reach them.

After 63 years, I have decided to learn how to cook something other than mac & cheese or meat on the grill. I know that sounds a bit lofty, but I’m going to give it a shot. A couple of my camping friends unknowingly gave me a bit of inspiration New Years Eve in the form of a new cast iron Dutch oven, so I’m well on my way!

It can be strange when and where inspiration strikes, but we should never dismiss it. Whether it’s something profound that comes from a business seminar or the pulpit, or something as conventional as a Dutch oven, make it work to your advantage.

Inspiration may come from your family, through the naïve eyes of a toddler or the experienced eyes of a parent or grandparent. Most of mine comes from my wife, usually after I propose a not-so-brilliant idea for a “needed” purchase or vacation.

It may also come from within your work family, again through the inexperienced rookie or a seasoned veteran.

MFCP offers many sources of inspiration through online training sessions and in-person conferences. The organization also provides a platform for you to send out a question or problem to all members, hoping for inspiration or a solution. Contact the MFCP office and Lee will share your concern with the membership.

One of the best sources of inspiration lies within your paycheck. Whether it’s food, new shoes for the kids or a pontoon boat (remember my “needed” purchase?), those things are great inspiration to work a little smarter, harder or longer for a few extra $$ in your account.

I don’t know if this column qualifies, but I hope these words will encourage you to seek out sources of inspiration every day, or at least recognize them when they present themselves.