From the Greek, from euphoros-healthy. From eu+pherein, to bear-birth, deliverer,produce.
euphoria…a feeling of well being or elation
To be marked by elation by high spirits
Enthusiastic…filled with or marked by enthusiasm
From the Greek, enthousiasmos, from enthousiazein, to be inspired
Enthusiasm…1. a belief in special revelations of the Holy Spirit. 2. A strong excitement of feeling
There’s a feeling I get. It’s a happy, elated feeling. Something’s coming, but I don’t know what it is. It feels good, and I get very excited at the thought that I might be on the verge of something grand.
“Pending euphoria” is a tool that you can use to get your creative nectar going. In general this feeling doesn’t have a checklist of behaviors that can be diagnosed. It’s just a good vibe that, if left unnurtured, fades and withers like a tender, unwatered seedling. When the pending euphoria hits, it may feel like a brick thrown through a window. Or sometimes, it’s like a gentle breeze tickling my skin saying, “Hello Sweetie… I’m here. Something’s coming.” That’s pending euphoria.
The brick feeling crashing into me is easily lost; the gentle breeze can die. Then I feel hot and dry, parched and without ideas. So, I’ve trained myself to pay attention to the pending euphoria. It’s a process that doesn’t always work, at first. But like anything, practice will help build a resource for working with this phenomenon and I have learned to develop the feeling.
We can build these feelings on our own and then work on uncovering what is behind them. I tap into everything, keeping my eyes open and listening to my inner voice, and letting it lead me to what it wants me to create.
I think we all experience this sensation, but we may not realize what is going on and therefore, dismiss the feeling. Often, our inner critic kills the feeling before we can even enjoy the elation or the discovery of creating from the heart.
To better describe the feeling, think of the very best thing that has happened to you. A calm, but excited feeling of joy, elation, excitement, or the birth of an idea. This feeling is pending; it’s something yet to come in the future. So, how can you intentionally move toward this experience? It can’t be fully described because it hasn’t happened yet. It hangs in the air like a hummingbird in a stop action freeze frame. When the pause button is lifted, the bird resumes its fluttering flight.
Do you remember your very first paycheck? Can you remember going into work knowing you would be taking it home with you? What about a very good grade or score on a paper in school? Perhaps, the teacher commented that there was only one “A” as they handed back the papers and you stared down at an “A” staring back at you. Or, was it the first time you held your baby? Your first big sale at work? Praise from someone for whom you have the highest respect? Euphoria: that wonderful feeling of high elation.
Why are we chasing something that we can get from revisiting past memories or by creating it for ourselves by performing well? This feeling of well-being is a tool we can use to not only make us feel well and exuberant, but to give us a building block for creativity. I use it to look for opportunities to create something from the heart in art, writing, or working in “the zone”- that place where all things come together.
When you create from the heart, you take yourself to a new level. Your work is so much alive when it comes from your heart. And, a good by-product of this heartfelt work is the feeling of extreme well-being.
How can we conjure up this pending feeling when we aren’t sure how to even get the euphoria going? Some experiment with drugs to achieve this. While it might have a euphoric effect at first, it often comes with addiction or paranoia, preventing the meaningful, lasting euphoria we long for.
Others, like myself, practice meditation to find our way to a place of euphoria. And if you exercise a practice of being “in the zone”, you may also find this feeling. Mark McGuinness, blogger of99% Insights on Making Ideas Happen, spends 20 minutes in morning meditation each day, saying, “I’m convinced it makes me a better writer.”
You can utilize meditation to hone a practice of discovery and being open to that pending euphoria so you can become more aware of it when it arrives. At times when I’ve felt stuck with my art, the first thing I do is meditate, focusing only on my breath.
Don’t try and force it. Euphoria can’t be pushed. Keep your eyes open. Listen to your inner voice. Pay attention when things seem to be exciting or when a little whisper in you says, “Hello, there. Something’s coming. I have an idea for you. Are you ready? Are you open?”