12 Emotions You Might Feel But Can’t Explain

Humans have the amazing ability to feel emotions that are so profound and complex that we sometimes have a hard time expressing them through our language and other means of communication. It can be frustrating when you feel something you can’t quite understand or explain, but the truth is, there are certain emotions that are simply too deep and too complicated for us to put intowords.

This is why the brilliant writer John Koenig penned and put together the “Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows”, a compendium of all the most complicated and indescribable feelings you may not even know you’re experiencing. With that said, listed here are the 12 most common emotions you might feel but can’t explain:

1. Sonder

Sonderis defined as the sudden realization that you can never completely know a person. It’s when you start to understand that everyone around you has their own story that you might never get to know about. You realize that you can onlyget to know as much about a person as they’ll allow you to.

2. Hanker Sore

This is an emotion most of us wouldn’t want to admit to feeling, but hanker sorerefers to the phenomenon of finding someone so attractive that it makes you feel angryat them for some reason. It differs from jealousy in the sense that it’s subtler and more subconscious. When you feelhanker sore, you don’t feel explicitly hostile or envious towards the person, but deep down inside, you can’t help but feel upset at their random stroke of luck for winning the genetic lottery.

3. Lachesism

Have you ever felt the sudden desire to have something bad happen to you for no reason? Well, that feeling is what you call lachesism. It’s that deep, dark impulse most of us have, to be struck by tragedy and come out on the other side. It’s born out of our innate desire for challenge and growth, which pushes us to test the bounds of our courage and resilience.

4. Ellipsism

Ellipsism is a feeling that people often misinterpret as curiosity or inquisitiveness, but really, it refers to a desire to understand the world and to know what will happen in the future. This is something most scientists, scholars, artists, and inventors can probably relate to, as many of them have a hard time coming to terms with the fact that they might never get to see how history will turn out, how they’ll be remembered, and what legacy they may leave behind.

5. Mauerbauertraurigkeit

Mauerbauertraurigkeit is defined as the sudden feeling of wanting to push people away and put your defenses back up. It often happens when we let our insecurities tell us we’re not good enough and feel afraid that if other people saw us for who we really were, they’d reject us.

6. Gnossienne

Next is gnossienne, which is the feeling you get when you realize that you don’t actually know someone as well as you thought you did. It’s the realization that even your closest family and friends have a part of themselves that they hide from everyone else, a secret inner world that only they can know about.

7. Liberosis

Have you ever wished you could just stop worrying so much and relax? If so, then you’ve already experienced liberosis.Liberosisis the feeling you get when you’re afraid you’re not living your life to the fullest, and it comes from a desire to be more carefree and easygoing.

8. Monachopsis

Monachopsis means feeling out of place for some reason. It can happen even when you’re someplace familiar or surrounded by your friends and family. You don’t understand it, but you just can’t shake the feeling that you don’t belong here or you don’t fit in with everyone else. That’s monachopsis.

9. Onism

Next is onism, which refers to the awareness of how little of the world you will ever be able to experience. Those of us who love to travel and go on adventures may sometimes feel wistful over the realization that there are still so many beautiful places out there we might never get to see. Onism represents those unfulfilled desires and goals we fear we might never achieve before we die.

10. Nighthawk

This is what you call that feeling you get when you can’t sleep for some reason. Psychologists believe that nighthawks – recurring thoughts that only come to you late at night –may be because of some unfinished business you need to resolve but haven’t acknowledged yet.

11. Catoptric Tristesse

Similar to sonderand gnossiene, catoptric tristesseis a specific kind of sadness that comes from the realization that you can never really know what someone else thinks of you. Wanting to the approval and acceptance of others is something all of us feel burdened by, which is probably why we all struggle with catoptric tristesse from time to time as well.

12. Jouska

Finally, jouskais defined as the feeling of wanting to have a conversation with someone in your head. While it may sound somewhat strange, it’s something most people have experienced a number of times in their lives. Did you ever want to get something off your chest but didn’t have the courage to say it? Or is there something you let someone knowbut never got the chance to? That’s jouska, and it’s a feeling you get when you want to give yourself closure for something that was never resolved in your life.

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