A great myth in our society tells people to do whatever feels good to them. This idea has risen to the level of a god in our culture. However, are feelings always a good guide for behavior?
Feelings are frequently misleading, presenting us with false ideas. For example, have you ever felt like everyone forgot your birthday? All day long no one seemed to remember. Your feelings continually told you that people didn’t care about you or your birthday. Later in the day as you opened a door, a room full of people yelled “Happy Birthday!”
A surprise birthday party is just one example of how our feelings lie to us. Here are a few others: People feel they have a right to steal from their company; they get caught and are fired or go to jail. People feel that they are capable of driving; then they get a DUI and lose their license. People feel that no one cares about them; they act out in self-destruction.
Obeying feelings frequently produces pain. Human beings, however, have much better measures of reality than their feelings – logic, conscience, and the wisdom and experience of others. And human beings, unlike animals, have the ability to ignore the feelings, cravings, whims, genetic tendencies, or compulsions that seek to lead them into self-produced misery.
“If it feels good, do it,” is a big, fat lie. Here is the truth! If it is wise, honest, fair, moral, and will produce positive consequences in your future, do it. If not, avoid it no matter how good it may feel.