Choose To Feel Good

A few days ago I caught myself doing this… thing.

I was sitting at my desk, staring past the monitor, looking at the sky. The sky was blue, the city sparkled with sun light, some birds flew by.

I had no particularly pressing items on my to do list, no emergencies or disasters, no appointments or responsibilities. I could be doing anything I wanted to do.

Then, my mind started moving.

First it thought about the new lease I just signed and whether or not it was the right thing to do. Then it started worrying that my posture at the computer was going to kill me. Then, it started spinning:

  • I should travel more, why don’t I travel more?
  • Maybe I should have gotten married
  • Shouldn’t I have kids by now?
  • I’m spending too much money on groceries
  • What if there is a fire in my apartment building?

On it went, spinning rapid-fire thoughts that slowly knitted a quilt of dread over my entire body. My heart started beating harder and harder. I got nervous. I felt anxious.

Then, something happened.

I gave my full attention to the inside of my body. I observed myself like an outsider views a painting in a gallery. I decided I didn’t like the thing that I was looking at. And I didn’t like the way I felt. So very quickly, and without thinking I decided to change it.

I decided to Feel Good.

My heart slowed down, my nervousness went away and the feeling of dread lifted, like a soft, helium balloon.

I felt Good.

Nothing had changed. Nothing in my life was different than it was a moment before. I still wasn’t traveling, I had no children and my lease was still signed. The only thing that had changed was that I had decided to alter my own internal feeling, from Dread to Good.

"Good things happen to the human spirit when it is left alone."  – John Taylor Gatto

The Stock Market

I once heard Warren Buffet say that the stock market has always gone up. It would be almost impossible to lose money if you invested in the Dow Jones and left it alone. Yet, thousands of people have lost fortunes and wiped out their savings.

Dow Jones Over Time
If you sold everything when prices dipped, you miss the recovery that happened every single time.

Weight Loss

I saw a story about weight loss. A woman had lost around 30 lbs over a period of six months. She tracked her food and weighed herself daily and posted her progress report. Her daily and weekly results were all over the place and frustrating. Some days she lost weight, other days she gained weight. But over time, her weight steadily went down.

Weight Loss Over Time
If you quit every time you gain weight, you miss the recovery that happened every single time.

There were plenty of times where her weight jumped and she could have quit, missing the recovery that happened soon after, every single time.

Both of these examples show the trouble you can get yourself into if you become too focused on the day-to-day feelings and lose sight of life’s long-term progression.

If you were a participant in either of these examples and dropped out early because you lost a little money (had a bad day) or gained a few pounds (didn’t get your way) you would never get to the long term result… which is almost always good and happens every single time.

Only Good Things Happen

Only Good Things HappenI have a small Post-It note stuck to my bathroom mirror that says “Only Good Things Happen” .

This is a reminder that although some terrible things have happened to me and around me during my lifetime, even the worst experiences resulted in some kind of good.

In fact, the worse my problems are and were, the more uniquely qualified I become to help other people down the line. Have you ever noticed that your worst experience has actually been of use to someone else at some point later down the line?

  • For example. I struggled for many years with alcohol, drugs and the suicides of family members. Those experiences were horrible and almost destroyed me at the time. But now, years later I can talk to someone who is dealing with addiction or the death of their parent and I can have a conversation with them in a way that no one else can. I am more qualified than a doctor to help them with this problem, because I have been through it, felt it and lived. So in that way – even the worst things that have happened, were good.
  • In your life. Many bad things may have happened to you in your lifetime. But if you’re reading this – they did not kill you. You were not destroyed. You are alive and well and have a computer and an internet connection. What if instead of worrying about how things should have been you spent your time helping others that are currently going through what you went through many years ago?

Now, when I put things in perspective, I realize that if the worst things that I have been through didn’t kill me and may have actually caused some good to happen… then the 1 year lease I just signed can’t possibly be worth worrying about.

So instead of worrying about it, I choose to feel good.

Choosing to Feel Good

We all have things going on in our lives that are worth feeling bad about. There are bills to pay, relationships falling apart, health problems, regrets and disappointments. But when you look back at your life, has worrying and feeling terrible ever solved any of your problems?

The answer is no.

So if your problems are there – and worrying about them will not solve them. Why not choose to feel good? Even if it accomplishes nothing (same as worrying) it will set you free. Free from the heart pounding, anxiety and regret that you might be feeling right now.

It’s Easy To Do

Choosing to feel good is simple. And you can do it right now. Seriously, do this with me right now.

  • Stop everything
  • Notice the feeling going on inside of you
  • Take a deep breath, smile and say to yourself “I Feel Good”
  • Breathe out


Anytime you catch your head spinning, do it again.

Don’t Forget

Remember to feel goodLife gets busy and you may forget to feel good. Imagine how many times you’ve discovered a new book you wanted to read online and forgotten it as soon as the phone rang? It happens to me all the time.

I use phone alarms to remind me of things.

In this case, I want to remember to Feel Good. So I set a reminder on my phone to go off every few days (every day becomes annoying). When the alarm goes off, I take a breath and feel good.

Give it a try. It may save you when you need it most.

  • samrex

    Cool man, all too easily we forget that we are in charge of our own emotions. Sometimes you need to just tell your self how to feel and not let your subconscious own the day. Good read.

    • Malan Darras

      Right samrex – we are in control, but rarely take it. We can totally tell this human machine how to feel.

  • Alberto

    Another great post. Thanks.

    Quick question — you mentioned on another post that you have a guide to outsourcing on your Facebook page. I looked, but couldn’t find it. Do you have a link to that post?

    Thank you.

    • Malan Darras

      Alberto – yes I did post a note about outsourcing but I don’t have a guide. I don’t think I mentioned a guide either. I will have posts and videos about it soon and maybe a guide IS in order. Stay tuned.

  • Zach

    Really dig your posts about positivity Malan. There’s a long history of chemical imbalances and depression in my family. So for years I allowed myself to “be depressed.” At a Tony Robbins conference, he spoke about the power of language. And basically said, if you don’t allow yourself to ever say you’re depressed again, then you won’t be. You still might be down and have awful days. But all the mental associations of “being depressed” won’t come with it. That has been incredibly powerful for me.

    Another coach that I have worked with has a great saying: “There are a million reasons to not be happy. But not one good one. And there’s only one good reason to be happy: because you can.”

    Keep up the awesome posts!

    • Malan Darras

      I’ll have to look up the Robbins thing on the word depression. Seems I’ve heard it before and sounds perfect. Sounds like you stay pretty busy with self-help action. nice.

  • Denis

    “Has worrying and feeling terrible ever solved any of your problems?” So true.

    It’s hard not to have a wry smile when I realise just how much time have I wasted, worrying myself into a corner.

    Awesome insight. Thanks.

    • Malan Darras

      you bet Denis, thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  • hackventure

    Reminds me of the serenity prayer which makes so much sense.

    “Lord, give me the courage to change what I can change, the serenity to accept what I can’t, and the wisdom to tell the difference”.

    Thanks for the reminder Malan!

    • Malan Darras

      yeah, one of the most simple and powerful sentences of all time.

  • Petre Veluda

    Yes, good read Malan. We are only the result of what we believe. It’s hard to feel good, because it’s so good to feel bad. Strange I know..

    • Malan Darras

      Hey Petre – yeah it’s strange. I notice that a lot times we choose to feel whatever we’re the most comfortable with. So even if feeling bad makes us feel bad, the bad feeling is comfortable, we are used to it. So we just feel comfortably bad. we are odd animals.

      • Petre Veluda

        True. It’s general social issue. Everybody needs to be busy all the time because it makes them important. It’s just like having an expensive phone or fancy clothes. Also people like to complain and have somebody’s shoulder to cry on. It’s comforting and it’s a good excuse to procrastinate and not get out of their comfort zone. Unfortunately they don’t know that. Fortunately you really don’t have to read more than 5, 6 books on the topic to find out about this stuff.

  • Kat

    I appreciate you so much! I was struggling with my issues and finding a difficult time finding people (I still am). I prayed that God would send just one or two people to help. You are one of the two he sent! Thank you!!!

    • Malan Darras

      glad to hear it Kat. best comment of the day

  • Luis Barrios

    Thanks for freeing stress

    • Malan Darras

      you bet Luis, thanks for the feedback

  • Liz Cherry Hippler Eysink

    Look at our Malan all grown up and feeling good about life… I love it! I remember when you just weren’t there and now you are… Makes me happy you’re happy. I’ve always tried to look at the good in life. I’m glad you are now too.

    • Malan Darras

      Liz – some of us are slow learners haha

  • seanyb87

    Love it Malan! Great post and something I will take value from. Whats the new lease all about.. if you dont mind me asking 🙂

    • Malan Darras

      Thanks sean – Lease: just not sure if staying here was the right decision (i’ve been considering moving to the beach)

      • seanyb87

        If moving to the beach is affordable and makes you happy! Go for it man. That’s one of my aims… to move as close as I can to the beach!

  • Pete

    “Maybe I should have gotten married
    Shouldn’t I have kids by now?”

    I’d much rather be single than in an unhappy marriage or just another divorce statistic. I like the idea of kids, but given my current work schedule, I think I’d be a rubbish dad, and there’s far too many of those around.

    This may sound negative, but actually I think it’s important that we each assess our own reality. Don’t judge yourself by comparing yourself to others.

    Just be yourself. No need to conform to what others may think. In fact, it kinda’ helps in marketing to come up with out of the box ideas.

    • Malan Darras

      hey Pete. I agree, there are huge benefits to not having a family/kids. it’s just one example (of 1,000) things that pop into my mind when it gets going.

  • Edgar Ochoa

    Another inspiring post, thanks Malan!

    Yes, I have to agree that many times all the stress, worrying, etc… is all in our minds. If we’re able to control it such as reminding ourselves that “hey, other people have it much worse than me”…. and like you mentioned the other day, you see a blind person walking down the street…. your problems are gone!

    Thank you for this reminder to “feel good”!

  • Ryan Biddulph

    Malan, been there, and have made that good choice many times 😉 Thanks for sharing!

    • Malan Darras

      you bet Ryan, glad to hear. thanks for reading.