Merriam Webster defines awe as “an emotion variously combining dread, veneration, and wonder that is inspired by authority or by the sacred or sublime.”
In those moments when I am focused on being my Best Self – the person that Luna thinks I am – I am very much in awe.
I am in awe of the people in my life: My wife, family, friends, acquaintances, people I see on the street and in the grocery store, and the person standing at the corner asking for money.
I am in awe of the world around me: Hearing Grateful Dead and Led Zeppelin on Alexa, the client who transforms fear into empowerment, the weed that flowers in the blacktop, the ever-changing sunset painted for fleeting moments in the sky.
I am in awe of the hummingbirds and the morning doves cooing when I awaken. When I am riding my bike, my feet dancing on the pedals and I am one with my bike and the road, I am in awe.
When I allow myself to be in the moment, I am in awe of everything. It is all amazing, beautiful and wonderful. I am in awe.
Experiencing awe bears on well-being
Scientists tell us that the emotion of awe plays a big role in our health, happiness and well-being. Awe plays an important role in bolstering happiness, health and your social interactions — and it may have actually long played a role in how and why humans get along and ultimately cooperate with one another.
Jennifer Stellar, PhD, assistant professor in the Psychology Department at the University of Toronto, says that, “People feeling awe focus more of their attention outward and value others more in social interactions.”
“Awe makes us feel humbled thereby lessening selfish tendencies like entitlement, arrogance, and narcissism,” says Amie Gordon, PhD, Principal Research Scientist in the Emotion, Health, and Psychophysiology Lab at University of California-San Francisco.
Stellar’s and Gordon’s team found that people who reported experiencing more awe also appeared to have better immune health. (Why scientists say experiencing awe can help you live your best life)
Awe was the single positive emotion most likely to be linked lessening the risk of diabetes, heart disease, and depression.
Experience more awe
Here are some things that you can do to experience more awe in your life:
- Be the Greatest Expression of You: When you are being your Best Self, you can’t help but be in awe of your world. You will find the sacred and sublime.
- Get outside: Go be in nature and look for something you’ve never seen before. Have you ever watched worker ants forage for food? Or how about honey bees gathering nectar, humming birds at the feeder or fireflies on a summer night?
- Celebrate fear: I have written numerous times before about getting out of your comfort zone and doing something new or, perhaps better yet, doing something that terrifies you and holds you back from achieving your goals.
- Look up and out: When you use your peripheral vision and look up, your world changes. You relax, you are happier and can see with awe what is around you.
- Allow for new possibilities: When you open your mind to allow for new possibilities there is room for you to look at things differently. You can ask questions and value opinions that are different than yours. Who knows, you might even discover the impossible.
Becoming the Greatest Expression
Becoming the Greatest Expression of You is a series of posts that I began on March 20, 2016. One day I hope to turn them into a book.
I love receiving your feedback. Please let me know your own thoughts on the Greatest Expression of You and how you have benefited using this process.
You can find the previous posts by clicking on the button below.
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I celebrate life with awe!
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