Lately I’ve been realizing that it’s not really the experiences we’re chasing, but rather the feelings we get from them that we’re really after.

For instance…

You don’t go skydiving simply to jump out of a plane and free fall! You go because you want to FEEL ALIVE, and EXCITED, and ADVENTUROUS!

You don’t learn Spanish so you can bitch out the guy that called you Hijo de Puta. You learned because you wanted to FEEL what it’s like to communicate with, learn from, and bitch out a person in a language different than your own. (!Hijo de puta la concha de tu vieja!

[very very bad words])

We do the things we do because they ultimately give us the feelings that define what makes us truly happy in life.

SEARCHING FOR THAT FEELING

One of my favorite feelings to seek out is THAT FEELING – It’s called that feeling because it doesn’t quite have a singular word that defines it. Simply stated though, it’s the one when everything just seems to make sense and it all just feels RIGHT.

Yes, that feeling.

I started to think more in depth about how to go about seeking out this feeling after reading The Inquisitive Traveler’s Kyle Morgan’s post Where Is That Feeling. Reading about his moment of reencountering that feeling, he described it perfectly as,

“It was one of those moments in your life when you have an epiphany and are brought to a complete standstill, yet all at once it seems as if everything comes to you in a mad torrent, complete understanding of who you are and where you are going.”

I read that and I thought to myself, wow what an amazing moment and feeling. People spend their entire lives hoping to get just a glimpse of what that feels like. And there I was, reading about his experience and feeling inspired.

It’s those moments when you feel you have a complete understanding of who you are and where you are going that life just seems to make sense. It’s just THAT feeling.

CHASING FEELINGS

For me, personally, I am not able to ignore when my general feeling is one in which I’m just not feeling it. I can’t look the other way when something feels off. I can’t not chase a feeling because it seems outside or inside circumstances won’t let me.

I wanted to feel Alive, and Excited and Adventurous. So I jumped out of a plane a couple of years ago and got to stare at the skyline of Philadelphia while I plummeted to the earth with a lunatic who does this for a living tied to me back.

I wanted to feel what it’s like to communicate with, learn from, and bitch out a person in a language other than my own. So, I moved to Argentina for 6 months where I also had the opportunity to bitch out some fugly cat-calling boludos.

Nowadays I’m chasing a lot of feelings. I’m chasing the very one that Kyle was talking about above. I’m chasing after the feelings of accomplishment and the rewards of hardwork through my entrepreneurial endeavors. I’m chasing after the feelings of calmness and peace through practicing and learning more about spirituality. I’m chasing after the feelings of being connected, feeling understood, and feeling part of a group through reaching out and connecting with those that share my passions and values. And the list goes on and on and on!

SO, HOW ARE YOU FEELING?

It seems we are simply on a mission to cross off more and more from our To Do lists. We’re forgetting to actually FEEL! We forget that it’s not the experiences that we really are seeking, but the feeling we get from them. And so, by the time we reach that experience, sometimes we aren’t even sure how to feel anymore.

So,  stop and smell the roses every once in awhile. Let’s you and I both pay attention to each and every nano second of a special moment in which we’re feeling an epiphany, or the love of a significant other or friend, or the accomplishment of reaching a mountain’s highest peak, or really anything that warrants time to FEEL – which is actually EVERYTHING.

We all have to DO in order to BE. But we also all have to FEEL in order to embrace and truly take in what it is we DO and who it is we are BEING.

What feelings are you chasing after? How? Why?

I’m Feeling This Image Credit

About Lauren Rains

Hi my name is Lauren Rains. I write about the human experience. Through thick and thin, I’m dedicated to growth, adventure, integrity, and love. The Mad To Live is based on my pursuits, experiments, research, and lessons of challenge and triumph in all areas of life, including being entrepreneur, a writer, a philosopher, a traveler, a teacher, a student, a creative, a friend, a daughter, a sister, a significant other, a stranger and the list goes on. At the end of the day, I believe human beings are here for two reasons: 1.) to love one another with total acceptance, and 2.) to see what we’re made of as we create the possibilities for an abundant life for ourselves and for others. No more bullshit, let's just enjoy our lives.

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"What you seek is seeking you."

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