Do you remember the last time you felt fascinated? Did you ever feel fascinated by a form or a colour, a reflection of the light or a natural phenomenon? What about by an intricacy of design? Or by people and their behaviour? It is probably not too hard to recall moments of total absorption before you got unwell. But what fascinates you these days?
Looking back at my own experience of depression, the magical feelings of being fascinated with the world around you fade away pretty fast once the depression descends upon you. The world rapidly turns bleak. Day dreaming, imagination and our innate curiosity evaporate. Emptiness invades our heads and hearts. We slow down. We shut the world out. We lock ‘the door’. We throw away or misplace ‘the keys’.
On the other hand, I found that once the depression is lifted, your ability to feel mesmerised with the world’s wonder returns. You regain an intense interest in the ‘outside’ world.
What I also discovered is that deliberately choosing to get fascinated about anything outside of yourself can uplift your mood almost in an instant.
I am not claiming that it is an easy choice to make. Neither will it come naturally if you’ve been walking the desert of depression for a while. However, engaging your right (creative) brain, as well as your left (analytical) brain while researching or investigating your topic of interest will bring you a temporary respite and a boost of energy. So, how do you make a choice in favour of fascination?
Let me illustrate this with an example: Once upon a time (last century to be precise) there was a man who liked hiking and hunting in the mountains. What he did not like is that it took him ages afterwards to remove burdock burrs out of his woolly clothes and his dog’s coat. Enough for anyone to get frustrated, annoyed, impatient or angry…
But, this man chose a different attitude. He became fascinated by the tenacity of the burrs instead of being constantly frustrated and annoyed. So he started investigating the burrs under a microscope to see what made them so sticky. It did not take him long to find the answer and get inspired. It took him a little bit longer to produce and patent his invention.
That’s how George de Mestral’s ability to choose in favour of fascination led him to creating Velcro (hook and loop fasteners), which many of us use today.
So, how do we bring fascination back into our lives? I think by a small but significant shift in our attitude and by allowing our natural curiosity to take over.
But why do we need to do it? Why bother?
I think that without fascination your life stagnates pretty fast. You lose the ability to appreciate the world around you and feel grateful.
Being fascinated takes you out of your ‘inward’ world and reminds you of the big picture. Reminds you of the connection and interrelation of all things. Reminds you of your creative and imaginative self. Reminds you of possible alternatives. Reminds you that your mission on earth is far from finished.
I would definitely put being fascinated on my ‘must have’ daily list. What about you? What are your thoughts?
Stay strong, remain hopeful and seek inspiration!
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