Why giving voice to your impulses matters and how this can change the world
At the foundation of every person is a complex living being that, for a long time in our history, we as a collective have lost sight of or forgotten to take into consideration. That is why in many different ways and places around the world, a strong sense is rising within many of us, a sense that something is missing, something's not right.
In the beginning of our lives we are born as an essence of human potential.
We learn how to walk, eat, speak and finally socialize with other people of our kind and do so following our biological functions and impulses. Then, we receive the ‘schooling’ of good manners and acceptable behaviors from our parents, followed later by the formal schooling process.
This way of ‘schooling’ is not entirely in healthy symbiosis of what we as humans need, express, and ultimately long for. This type of schooling is conditioning to think the same way (with a cognitive frame), to follow the same social code (being “civilized”) and to absorb education that originally was designed to indoctrinate us as general knowledge operators of machines (as was needed in the industrial era). Soon enough a new modern man was born - Good and successful human beings are those who navigated the rules.
All of that results in a lost connection with ourselves, with our inner being. We become mechanic, without life, purpose and meaning - as the machines that we were operating. Viktor Frankl, in “A Man’s Search for Meaning” identified that this mental and physical influenza - a collective problem of people working through the week on predictable schedule, fulfilling the task given, and not really exploring their inner impulses that could move them into an inspired action-based life - is harmful and deadly to our nature and needs as human beings. He writes,
”that kind of depression which afflicts people who become aware of the lack of content in their lives when the rush of the busy week is over and the void within themselves becomes manifest.” - Viktor Frankl
As a result of this way of life, we become desensitized to our initial nature filled with impulses. We’re still bombarded by these impulses constantly through the day but we have been socialized to ignore most of them. The trouble is that when we learn to ignore our impulses, we don’t discriminate between the good and bad impulses, between the polite and rude impulses, between the creative and the destructive impulses. We just become numb, we turn all of them off. We lose the true ability for spontaneity. Instead, everything needs to pass the frontal cortex, to judge whether the idea meets requirements of our duties, of what is accepted, and what is expected from us - and only THEN we search for our gut feeling to see if it is still there, if we ‘feel’ to do what is proposed or offered.
In acting training impulse is one of the most important tools for an actor to create a scene or character that is “Living truthfully under imaginary circumstances”. After all, both actors as well as ordinary humans should ultimately search for the true expression of who they are, where truth itself lies. Being connected to impulse, giving it a voice and space, leads naturally to spontaneity, and spontaneity is a mother of improvisation, something that we need more in life, in order to survive.
We should all be able to respond to the truth of the moment, in resonance with our needs, instead of being tamed, composed and behind the mask of a social personality that was rather imposed on us. In addition, our world needs now a much greater number of people who take action following their impulses. The action brings abundance, serenity, and meaning to our lives and lives of others. Underneath we feel that we need to feel that spark, we long for it, we wish to be engaged and belong to something, that makes our life more vivid, rich and fulfilling.
How we can do that? How can we overcome the social fear of being judged, not fitting in, and untame of what has been tamed (we almost lost also the capacity to feel our chains). How can we sustain the ability to let our experiences flow through us?
Firstly, we need to restore and reawaken the impulse within us. It is like the sparkle that starts the flame, that makes the engine start of the car. Then we need to re-learn on how manage this surfing in the unknown, exactly like surfers on the big wave, that we just throw ourselves into, while remaining in the search of truth, while changing our inner world and the society for better, one wave at the time.
It's time to take an action!