Feeling alive. It feels like an odd thing to write and even as I think about what it means, I’m suddenly hyper aware of my pulse and the rhythm of my breathing. But one of my favourite things that comes from travelling is the sense of feeling like you’re really living rather than just surviving. It’s become normal to sleepwalk through life with a sense of what could have been but ‘never will be’ rather than enjoying the full experience.This quote really struck a chord:
“We are very good at preparing to live but not very good at living. We know how to sacrifice ten years for a diploma and we are willing to work very hard to get a job, a car, a house and so on. But we have difficulty remembering that we are alive in the present moment, the only moment there is for us to be alive” – Thích Nhất Hạnh
Because it’s so easy to look forward to our plans, the ones that seem infinitely more exciting than day to day life, that we forget that we’re wishing away minutes, hours and days at a time. Precious time that we’ll never get back. One of my greatest fears is looking back on life and regretting how I’d spent my time, then wishing I’d done more.
So I guess the best way we can spend our lives is making sure we can look forward to each and every day. Whether it’s making sure you can do something you love each and every day, surrounding yourself with the people that mean the most to you or simply taking some time out to relax and forget about all the bad things, even if it’s just for a short time.
What makes me feel alive?
Memories of times where I have been truly happy leaves me feeling alive all over again and let a little bit that happiness flow back into my everyday life. Standing on top of a waterfall in Switzerland, gazing across the most stunning countryside with some amazing friends. Having conversations where you just laugh and laugh. Those drunken nights that always have a slight haze over them.
It makes me smile to think of invading this aqua obstacle course, laughing hysterically at the sight of legs flying at all angles as we tried to battle up the slopes using a rope ladder. So does thinking of 4am deep conversations, waterfights and excessive food consumption. And remembering the dreamlike sensation of floating on in a rubber ring before being dramatically upended into the cool blue water.
Back at home, I still feel more alive than I have in years. That feeling of utter joy still finds me when I’m singing along to my favourite songs in the car, complete with crazy dance moves. It finds me when a glimpse of a colourful sunrise is visible over the horizon and when I go out dancing to cheesy 90’s bars. Capturing this feeling means that you can laugh harder, smile wider and enjoy the little moments every single day.
What make you feel alive?