Zeal is an emotion we all feel, but it often goes unlabeled. You know, that enthusiastic devotion or intense interest you have for something. Scan your experience library for a moment and recall a time when you got so wrapped up in thought or doing something that the rest of the world fell away. A time when you were so absorbed in a task or train of thought you forgot about hunger or the urgent need to find a box to pee in.
Are you laughing yet? If you can relate to this kind of experience, you know what it’s like to feel zeal. When I set up camp, I experience this kind of focus, but it never dawned on me I stepped into the zeal zone! Another zeal zone for me is when I write. I’ll set a timer for an hour, and in the blink of an eye, the hour has long passed, and morning has suddenly turned to afternoon. I love those moments!
This is fine, and pretty easy when you get wrapped up in an activity. But what about when you get lost in thought? I have had more days or moments even than I can count when I get absorbed in feeling sad, frustrated, shameful or even angry. I get stuck there — as if I’m fiercely attached to them. I can think of other things I’d rather be swirling in zeal for, can’t you?
That said, I think this zeal emotion deserves some recognition. It’s interesting that it can have an equally negative or positive connotation. The nature of the word, though, leads me to think of it more in a positive context. That’s all well and yummy, but I think it is also important to understand that it applies in both a negative or positive context, and to explore it in either context as we’re examining our emotions.
When she explored her emotions, she found new ideas to consider…
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