My girlfriend says she has an existential crises every three months.
We talked about it, and worked out that one of the problems is excitement.
The things that used to excite her, don’t excite her anymore, and she hasn’t found anything new yet.
It got me thinking. How important is it to be excited?
There is the dictionary definition of excitement:
- A feeling of great enthusiasm and eagerness.
And then there is the neurological definition:
- A increase in frontal lobe activity, a release of dopamine, and a triggering of the amygdala.
But as it often the case, neither the dictionary or the science really gets to the heart of it.
Everything is brighter, I feel like something overflowing inside of me. I feel like more is possible. I feel like I’m going somewhere important. I feel more here, more present, more awake. I feel like my thoughts are flying faster. Everything that doesn’t matter shrinks away and disappears. Sometimes my heart rate might increase, and my throat might go slightly dry. I have no tolerance for anything that isn’t intensely compelling, vivid and in the moment.
Excitement is like a higher state. It takes us away from our problems, and gives us a clean energised view of the world. It makes us more aware of our possibilities and less aware of our limitations, because it is precisely the possibilities that excite us. Whether it’s the possibility of going to a new country, or the possibility of seeing a best friend we haven’t seen for a long time.
However, when we think about the limitations (like maybe your friend’s flight will be cancelled), we stop being excited and start being nervous – which feels kind of similar but is really the complete opposite. One is obsessing over possibilities, the other is obsessing over limitations.
Excitement, then, is good for the soul, because we get to see a different version of ourselves. We get to see ourselves in a wholly positive context. We get to see ourselves temporarily without worries. We get to see ourselves engaged, motivated, happy and without the weight of weariness or apathy, or even, to an extent, fear. We get to remember a purer version of ourselves.
We get to see ourselves excited. We get to be excited.
So I want you to be excited. Don’t worry, I’m not going to break down into all these positive self-affirmations that you can find everywhere on the net.
~Life is like a handle bar, you have to grab it and choose what direction you want to go in~
(He he. Well you won’t find that anywhere, perhaps.)
I just want you to be excited. I want you to access that state of mind.
Maybe because it feels good, maybe because it’s been too long. Maybe because you need the energy. Maybe because you need to remember what you are like without all the fear and the worry and the bullshit. But whatever, if you don’t want to do it, close the window, go somewhere else.
And if you’re still here: here’s what to do. Listen to this song. Close your eyes, and just get excited. It can be about a specific thing, or it can just be a general excitement. Whatever. Do what you have to do. (Unless you’re playing music on crap, built-in laptop speakers. In which case sort that out, because that’s like drinking wine through your nose.)
(here’s the song) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vH2QP18wRus