Seek Out Awe to Reset Your Mindset & Quality of Life

In a society where time and present moments are always preoccupied with chasing what’s ahead, accomplishing the next task and simultaneously balancing time with family and friends, it seems like there is always so much to do and not enough time to do it. 

A poll of more than 1,000 Americans found that nearly half (47%) felt they lacked enough time in daily life. This feeling of not having enough time to accomplish the tasks and demands of each day can lead to an impatient mindset that has been linked to undesirable side effects, such as trouble sleeping, stress, postponing taking care of oneself or others, and not engaging in leisure experiences. 

Though we can’t stop time, researchers at Stanford and University of Minnesota found that there is a way to shift people’s perception of how much time is available. The study shows that experiencing awe can make you feel like time is more plentiful while enhancing your wellbeing. 

Research explains the powerful emotion of awe is linked to an encounter of something immense in size, scope, complexity, ability or social bearing which alters your understanding of the world. Natural events such as thunderstorms, personal experiences such as childbirth and unfathomable structures such as the Grand Canyon or a towering skyscraper can all stimulate the sense of awe. 

When experiencing these moments of awe, your perception of time expands, which is followed with a momentary boost in life satisfaction. This elongated time perception has been found to  influence your mindset and lifestyle decisions, causing people to focus more on helping themselves and others through healthy diets, volunteering, and spending time and money on experiential products and experiences as opposed to material items. 

The good news is that reaching a moment of awe does not require storm chasing or climbing to the top of a mountain. Awe can be reached simply by reliving a memory, reading a story, or even watching a powerful film or commercial, according to researchers. Even the little things in life can lead us to a bigger, deeper sense of meaning. 

Encountering awe will look different for each person, but it’s all about when and where you seek it. 

Read the full study here.

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