Practice

Do Your Dance

The third and final suggestion, also from Savoring: A New Model of Positive Experience, is dear to my heart. It has its roots in the concept of fiero, or the feeling of pride of accomplishment innate to everyone. Jane McGonigal talks a lot about it in her book Reality is Broken,


Fiero is what we feel after we triumph over adversity. You know it when you feel it – and when you see it. That’s because we almost all express fiero in exactly the same way: we throw our arms over our head and yell.

 

Like this:

Now, you’ll notice that she went up on a roof to do this. It’s totally understandable if you choose to express your triumph in private. And yet…here’s another thought. We already talked about how it is useful to share the savor (including the savor of victory) with others. Even better, thanks to motor neurons, watching action makes our own bodies react with similar neurochemical responses:

…mirror neurons appear to let us “simulate” not just other people’s actions, but the intentions and emotions behind those actions. When you see someone smile, for example, your mirror neurons for smiling fire up, too, creating a sensation in your own mind of the feeling associated with smiling. You don’t have to think about what the other person intends by smiling. You experience the meaning immediately and effortlessly. – BrainFacts

Now, I’m simplifying a bit – there’s a lot of controversy about the extended applications and hypotheses about mirror neurons. But at the same time, if we didn’t enjoy watching movements, even brief ones, the tremendous range of GIFs shared online wouldn’t exist, and the animators at Pixar wouldn’t be so amazingly able to show so much human emotion and connection with just a couple of lamps.

To give you a head start, let me share with you a GIF of a Green Bay Packer at the end of a touchdown run. Feel free to bookmark this page and come back to it when you like; this is a nice little virtual dose of shared Fiero you can use along with your personal hooray:

A Green Bay Packer dancing in the end zone.
How it’s done in Green Bay

If you like this post, please send it to a friend!
The more fiero we share, the more we get back!

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