Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Impulses Love Coffee Shops

I’ve noticed something about impulses: they’re all about feeling. I was on the bus today, a few stops from work, when along comes this impulse. It says “Hey Eric! Why not get off early, grab a cup of coffee, and stroll the rest of the way in?” Then it winked. I knew this meant “Impulses love coffee shops. Maybe I’ll see you there and talk you into hanging out for a while.” So, this impulse makes no sense if you look at the ‘what’ of the matter: I’d just had coffee at lunch and I didn’t really feel like walking. But looking at the feelings involved, I see what I was after. I wanted to feel far from my destination. I wanted to feel the calmness of seeing space and time stretched out all around me. Thinking back, I’ve been chasing this feeling for as long as I can remember. To be honest, it’s a large part of what led me to grad school. Work makes me feel anxious and unsure of myself. It’s crippling. Learning feels safe. I do want to challenge myself but I don’t want to feel challenged. But maybe if I recognize that it’s not the space that I want, but the feeling of calm, I can cultivate this in other places?

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