What Makes You Feel the Most Alive?
I tweeted this question a few weeks ago, here are some of my favorite replies:
“Giving a eulogy at my grandfather’s funeral when I was 15” - Ryan Herr
“Kayaking the Salmon river in Idaho - navigating the unknown, placing your paddle strategically while making decisions in real time that require grace under pressure” - Catherine Coley
“I live for in-person teaching. There’s nothing like leaning into your preparation, reading the room, speeding up, slowing down, running the show, then watching students’ faces light up when the previously unknown or impossible come into focus.” - Caleb Hicks
“Speaking Italian with a small hotel owner in Bologna, making that connection and feeling the appreciation that she didn’t need to translate in English. She offered us a private bathroom next time we visited. :)” - Jessica DiCerbo
“Berkner High School battle of the bands.” - Allen Walton
“Definitely the points when I was closest to death. Car crash, engine dying mid-flight in a Cessna 172, post-surgery” - Dan Loewenherz
“Taking my daughter to her first big league baseball game. I remember thinking at the time ‘how could life possibly get better than this?’” - Ryan Holdaway
“Eating breakfast and reading a book at a cafe in Paris. It felt like I beat the game” - Al Doan
“Being super nervous before giving my brother's best man speech, completely calming down as soon as I started, and getting a lot of laughs and compliments afterward.” - Bob Lauer
“Pushing my second child out, without an epidural (start to finish in just under 2 hours)” - Bonnie Wong
“My 1-year old boy pumped out of his mind when I come home.” - Adam Chavez
“When the result of your actions makes someone else succeed. Something simple as opening a door or giving thanks and appreciation for someone’s existence.” - Jake Blas
Of eulogies & campfires
My moment was probably when I performed in musical theatre in front of 1,000+ people in high school. Hearing that many people laugh at your jokes is a power trip in the best way possible.
Brian Regan made a great point in his Comedians in Cars episode w/ Jerry Seinfeld: the moments in life you remember best usually come right after you feel “the butterflies.”
That nervous excitement of “maybe this’ll work & sure I could fail, but I’m gonna do it anyway.”
The things we nervously want to try and then end up succeeding… that’s the stuff of eulogies & campfire stories.
The moments you’ll remember while you’re dying, and for which you’ll feel grateful to have existed.
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