“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart.” ― Helen Keller
How lucky we are as human beings to have the ability to feel. Emotions make us human. They allow us to relate, care and connect with everything on the planet in ways that other creatures cannot. Sure, feelings can sometimes leave us sad, but all in all, that is part of living the human experience. Feelings make the human experience as beautiful and ugly as it is. Don’t take them for granted. Give yourself permission to feel from today! Start with these 10 key feelings you should never take for granted in life.
1. Falling in love
Falling in love is a wonderful feeling. Nothing is quite like falling in love and being loved right back. Never take that feeling for granted. It’s a life-changing experience. Do whatever it takes to keep love alive.Advertising
2. Losing someone you love
The feeling of losing someone close is deeply sad and meaningful. Never take it for granted. It helps you understand how fleeting life is. You learn the importance of appreciating those you love when they are still a part of your life. Too often, we don’t give much thought to the people and things we love until they are taken away. Talk, laugh, cry, and share quality time with loved ones daily, including your wife, husband, kids and parents.
3. Loving yourself
The feeling of loving yourself and being at ease, content and confident about who you are is deeply satisfying. It gives you a firm grounding in this world and should never be taken for granted. Nurture and protect it by practicing more self-love. Reassure yourself daily that you are beautiful, intelligent and wonderfully made. After all, you cannot love and care for others if you don’t first love and care for yourself.
If you have at least one person you feel completely connected to, whom you talk to and share your most personal life details without fear or shame, don’t take that for granted. Many people today are lonely and lost, even when surrounded by others, because their connections lack depth. Reach out to friends, neighbors, relatives or supporting organizations that offer companionship, or adopt a pet if necessary, to enjoy that feeling of connectedness and companionship.Advertising
Heartbreak can sting at any age. When it stings, it affects the same part of the brain that is affected when you feel physical pain. Don’t take heartbreak for granted, or try to numb yourself to the pain of a broken heart, or swear to keep off of relationships forever. Instead, allow yourself to feel sad if that’s how you’re feeling. Draw lessons from the experience and give yourself time to heal. Time really does heal all wounds, even though you might doubt that at the time.
6. Satisfaction for a job well done
There is a sense of deep satisfaction that washes over you when you know you have given something your best shot and done the task to the best of your ability. Don’t take that feeling for granted. It is a powerful motivator that boosts your ego and helps you aspire for more. However, don’t dwell too long on your successes. Take pride in the things you do, no matter how small or insignificant they might seem, and keep moving forward.
7. Pride for showing kindness
Whether you show kindness to another human being, or an animal or pet, there is a special, warm and fuzzy feeling of pride in the act that sweeps over you. Savor that feeling and the connection you make in the process. It gives meaning and value to your life and makes both you and the other person truly happy. Just don’t show kindness expecting something in return. Show genuine kindness and it will beget genuine kindness.Advertising
8. Enjoyment of a sumptuous meal
One of the most delightful pleasures of life is to sit and enjoy a delicious, full-course meal, especially when surrounded by loving family and/or friends. Don’t take that feeling for granted. Enjoy a sumptuous home-cooked meal and drink down a glass of fine wine to your full pleasure. Many people don’t get to enjoy that for different reasons ranging from health complications to the high cost of a decent meal.
9. Relief for releasing a full bowel
Ah, that feeling of rushing to the toilet and releasing a full bowel. Priceless! It makes you feel lighter and truly relieved. Don’t take the feeling for granted. Many people go to the toilet and constipate!
Success doesn’t come easy. You put in the hard work. You sacrifice your sweat and blood. You endure pain and hardships. In the end, you come out a winner. You become the champion! That is a glorious feeling. Cherish it when it comes. Winners are more likely to continue winning because they have tasted success and know what they are capable of.Advertising
Featured photo credit: Mo Riza via flickr.com
Last Updated on August 6, 2020
6 Reasons Why You Should Think Before You Speak
We’ve all done it. That moment when a series of words slithers from your mouth and the instant regret manifests through blushing and profuse apologies. If you could just think before you speak! It doesn’t have to be like this, and with a bit of practice, it’s actually quite easy to prevent.
“Think twice before you speak, because your words and influence will plant the seed of either success or failure in the mind of another.” – Napolean Hill
Are we speaking the same language?
My mum recently left me a note thanking me for looking after her dog. She’d signed it with “LOL.” In my world, this means “laugh out loud,” and in her world it means “lots of love.” My kids tell me things are “sick” when they’re good, and ”manck” when they’re bad (when I say “bad,” I don’t mean good!). It’s amazing that we manage to communicate at all.
When speaking, we tend to color our language with words and phrases that have become personal to us, things we’ve picked up from our friends, families and even memes from the internet. These colloquialisms become normal, and we expect the listener (or reader) to understand “what we mean.” If you really want the listener to understand your meaning, try to use words and phrases that they might use.
Am I being lazy?
When you’ve been in a relationship for a while, a strange metamorphosis takes place. People tend to become lazier in the way that they communicate with each other, with less thought for the feelings of their partner. There’s no malice intended; we just reach a “comfort zone” and know that our partners “know what we mean.”
Here’s an exchange from Psychology Today to demonstrate what I mean:
Early in the relationship:
“Honey, I don’t want you to take this wrong, but I’m noticing that your hair is getting a little thin on top. I know guys are sensitive about losing their hair, but I don’t want someone else to embarrass you without your expecting it.”
When the relationship is established:
“Did you know that you’re losing a lot of hair on the back of your head? You’re combing it funny and it doesn’t help. Wear a baseball cap or something if you feel weird about it. Lots of guys get thin on top. It’s no big deal.”
It’s pretty clear which of these statements is more empathetic and more likely to be received well. Recognizing when we do this can be tricky, but with a little practice it becomes easy.
Have I actually got anything to say?
When I was a kid, my gran used to say to me that if I didn’t have anything good to say, I shouldn’t say anything at all. My gran couldn’t stand gossip, so this makes total sense, but you can take this statement a little further and modify it: “If you don’t have anything to say, then don’t say anything at all.”
A lot of the time, people speak to fill “uncomfortable silences,” or because they believe that saying something, anything, is better than staying quiet. It can even be a cause of anxiety for some people.
When somebody else is speaking, listen. Don’t wait to speak. Listen. Actually hear what that person is saying, think about it, and respond if necessary.
Am I painting an accurate picture?
One of the most common forms of miscommunication is the lack of a “referential index,” a type of generalization that fails to refer to specific nouns. As an example, look at these two simple phrases: “Can you pass me that?” and “Pass me that thing over there!”. How often have you said something similar?
How is the listener supposed to know what you mean? The person that you’re talking to will start to fill in the gaps with something that may very well be completely different to what you mean. You’re thinking “pass me the salt,” but you get passed the pepper. This can be infuriating for the listener, and more importantly, can create a lack of understanding and ultimately produce conflict.
Before you speak, try to label people, places and objects in a way that it is easy for any listeners to understand.
What words am I using?
It’s well known that our use of nouns and verbs (or lack of them) gives an insight into where we grew up, our education, our thoughts and our feelings.
Less well known is that the use of pronouns offers a critical insight into how we emotionally code our sentences. James Pennebaker’s research in the 1990’s concluded that function words are important keys to someone’s psychological state and reveal much more than content words do.
Starting a sentence with “I think…” demonstrates self-focus rather than empathy with the speaker, whereas asking the speaker to elaborate or quantify what they’re saying clearly shows that you’re listening and have respect even if you disagree.
Is the map really the territory?
Before speaking, we sometimes construct a scenario that makes us act in a way that isn’t necessarily reflective of the actual situation.
A while ago, John promised to help me out in a big way with a project that I was working on. After an initial meeting and some big promises, we put together a plan and set off on its execution. A week or so went by, and I tried to get a hold of John to see how things were going. After voice mails and emails with no reply and general silence, I tried again a week later and still got no response.
I was frustrated and started to get more than a bit vexed. The project obviously meant more to me than it did to him, and I started to construct all manner of crazy scenarios. I finally got through to John and immediately started a mild rant about making promises you can’t keep. He stopped me in my tracks with the news that his brother had died. If I’d have just thought before I spoke…