Blogpost, self-reliance

The High Cost of Cheap Feelings

The problem with most of the knowledge that people need is that it’s so simple, it’s easy to discount. Although there is a definite effort to confuse arguments from a variety of forces, the answers are all pretty simple. Health is dependent upon diet and exercise. In the moment, the choice between the apple and the candy bar isn’t difficult on an informational level. It’s difficult on an emotional level. The candy bar promises feelings that the apple doesn’t. For each individual the draw could be for different reasons and varied intensities. Regardless, the candy bar exists in this world because it is a ticket to “cheap feelings”. A momentary hit of a pleasurable chemical inside of the brain. Unfortunately, these cheap feelings tend to come with a high cost.

The allure of cheap feelings is that they come RIGHT NOW! They feed into our desire for instant gratification. AND the high costs that come along with them are deferred payments. The hangover from the alcohol doesn’t come until tomorrow. Extra weight doesn’t show up for a few weeks or months. The realization that your dreams have passed you by through procrastination may not come for years. Regardless of the particular cheap feelings that you indulge in, they all have a price to be paid later.

The beautiful thing about the human mind is that it can be trained. It is an obedient “animal” if its master is attentive. Since the decisions are not difficult on an informational level, we simply need to train the emotion out of the decision or more accurate attach new emotions to the right decision. We know what to do! We just need to do it consistently enough that our brain buys into the training. Every single dog in the world wants to chase after the squirrel! Some don’t because they’ve been trained not to. PLEASE don’t get offended by my comparing your mind to an obedient dog. That’s a cheap feeling too! It’s easier to get mad at me for the perceived slight than look in the mirror long enough to say “I can do better in __________ area.”

Training takes time, effort and attention. Give all three to a component of your life that you’ve been paying the high cost of cheap feelings. Eventually they’ll be replaced with feelings that are more pervasive and positive. Rather than the momentary rush of excitement with the candy bar, you get the overarching feeling of well-being, health or pride. These types of feeling require daily payments for long durations but eventually they spit out dividends that far exceed the amount put in.

Tell the cheap feelings that you’re not for sale!


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