Is there any science that will unravel the feelings of the long-distance runner who takes gold in the Olympic marathon or of the little girl who drops her ice cream cone? Feelings like these are very real, aren’t they? In fact, we spend most of our lives feeling and sensing, wetted by things that science will never really explain.
It doesn’t really help our understanding to say that feelings are the result of the body’s chemical or hormonal balance. Maybe feelings as such aren’t really for us to understand scientifically but rather to simply apprehend or witness. Maybe the real question isn’t so much one of science but of habit and sense-of-life.
The feelings aroused by the sight of a huge, full moon or by the romantic embrace of a lover – these are truly wonderful experiences, aren’t they? But where do they come from? And how do we claim more of them? Ask yourself these questions: What can I do to feel happy more often? How do I control or govern my feelings of sadness or depression?
Days 22-24 Guide:
Today I want you to generate two lists: 1) things that make you happy – a clean house, dinner out, a new CD, going to a movie, etc. 2) things that sadden or depress, you – an overcast, rainy, or all-to-busy day, sickness in the family, financial problems. Be specific. Think of the things that are currently on your mind.
How do you live with the mix of good and bad, with some things that delight and others that sadden or depress you? Balance is key. And maintaining such balance requires a discipline and a diet of sorts.
Sometimes you must feed yourself things that you’re not really craving. In effect, you may need to force yourself to enjoy things. And that takes real discipline since the things that make you feel low are often times chronic. They just don’t go away easily, e.g. financial or health burdens. They seem overwhelming and suffocating.
Making the lists is only a starting point in helping you to identify the vehicles by which your feelings manifest. Certainly, they don’t solve your problems or guarantee your happiness. They only provide clues as to how you might begin controlling your experience.
More on this subject in upcoming articles.
Note: Depression is very real and sometimes a serious condition that requires professional attention. Click to learn more. http://www.depression-screening.org/index.htm
© 2004, Levi Hill