32 Terms For Emotions We Can’t Explain – From The Dictionary Of Obscure Sorrows
By Brianna Wiest
The unsettling awareness of your heartbeat. When your life doesn’t fit into a story. The appeal of the apocalypse, of being struck by disaster and liberated from everything. The desire to care less.
The way we cope with emotions is by mentally processing them. We interpret what they mean and respond accordingly. Yet, we have a limited linguistic understanding of them, which doesn’t necessarily mean we aren’t consciously aware of them anyway. Hence the feeling of being lost.
There’s always good in the bad, sometimes the comfortable option is the most destructive, oftentimes the most heartbreaking thing is the most necessary. If we better understood the complexity and intricacy of what we felt, we could better navigate our lives based on them; as we know, things are not either/or.
The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows has been creating and curating these words for years now, and here, we compiled 32 of them – both in text and video – that will help you understand what you didn’t know you didn’t know.
Sonder(n): The realization that each passerby has a life as vivid and complex as your own.
Jouska(n): A hypothetical conversation that you compulsively play out in your head.
Chrysalism(n): the amniotic tranquility of being indoors during a thunderstorm.
Opia(n): The ambiguous intensity of Looking someone in the eye, which can feel simultaneously invasive and vulnerable.
Vemödalen(n): The frustration of photographic something amazing when thousands of identical photos already exist.
Mauerbauertraurigkeit(n): The inexplicable urge to push people away, even close friends who you really like.
Monachopsis(n): The subtle but persistent feeling of being out of place.
Ambedo(n): A kind of melancholic trance in which you become completely absorbed in vivid sensory details.
Midsummer(n): A feast celebrated on the day of your 26th birthday, which marks the point at which your youth finally expires as a valid excuse.
Énouement(n): The bittersweetness of having arrived in the future, seeing how things turn out, but not being able to tell your past self.
Lachesism(n): The desire to be struck by disaster – to survive a plane crash, or to lose everything in a fire.
Exulansis(n): The tendency to give up trying to talk about an experience because people are unable to relate to it.
Vellichor(n): The strange wistfulness of used bookshops.
Ellipsism(n): A sadness that you’ll never be able to know how history will turn out.
Kuebiko(n): A state of exhaustion inspired by acts of senseless violence.
Rubatosis(n): The unsettling awareness of your own heartbeat.
Kenopsia(n): The eerie, forlorn atmosphere of a place that is usually bustling with people but is now abandoned and quiet.
Anecdoche(n): A conversation in which everyone is talking, but nobody is listening.
Adronitis(n): Frustration with how long it takes to get to know someone.
Rückkehrunruhe(n): The feeling of returning home after an immersive trip only to find it fading rapidly from your awareness.
Nodus Tollens(n): The realization that the plot of your life doesn’t make sense to you anymore.
Liberosis(n): The desire to care less about things.
Altschmerz(n): Weariness with the same old issues that you’ve always had – the same boring flaws and anxieties that you’ve been gnawing on for years.
Occhiolism(n): The awareness of the smallness of your perspective.