How Being in Awe Expands Time and Helps You Live Better
Having found a way to measure the sensation of awe in laboratory settings, researchers have found that appreciating majesty helps us live in the present, making life more satisfying.
What's the Latest Development?
We have all felt in awe of something at some point—the Grand Canyon, the Forbidden City, a starry night—but until recently, the feeling of awe has been mostly ignored by science. Psychological researchers at Stanford and the University of Minnesota, however, have devised an experiment to measure the feeling of awe in laboratory settings. "Across three different experiments, they found that jaw-dropping moments made participants feel like they had more time available and made them more patient, less materialistic, and more willing to volunteer time to help others."
What's the Big Idea?
The experiments demonstrate how intimately related are our mental and physical worlds and that by simply observing the majesty of the planet's natural environment, we arrive at a fuller understanding of life and are better equipped to deal with its hardships. "The researchers found that the effects that awe has on decision-making and well-being can be explained by awe's ability to actually change our subjective experience of time by slowing it down. Experiences of awe help to brings us into the present moment which, in turn, adjusts our perception of time, influences our decisions, and makes life feel more satisfying than it would otherwise."
Photo credit: Shutterstock.com
Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.
No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.
A NASA astronomer explains how astronauts dispose of their, uh, dark matter.
- When nature calls in micro-gravity, astronauts must answer. Space agencies have developed suction-based toilets – with a camera built in to ensure all the waste is contained before "flushing".
- Yes, there have been floaters in space. The early days of space exploration were a learning curve!
- Amazingly, you don't need gravity to digest food. Peristalsis, the process by which your throat and intestines squeeze themselves, actually moves food and water through your digestive system without gravity at all.
The Harvard psychologist loves reading authors' rules for writing. Here are his own.
- Steven Pinker is many things: linguist, psychologist, optimist, Harvard professor, and author.
- When it comes to writing, he's a student and a teacher.
- Here's are his 13 rules for writing better, more simply, and more clearly.
A growing body of research shows promising signs that the keto diet might be able to improve mental health.
- The keto diet is known to be an effective tool for weight loss, however its effects on mental health remain largely unclear.
- Recent studies suggests that the keto diet might be an effective tool for treating depression, and clearing up so-called "brain fog," though scientists caution more research is necessary before it can be recommended as a treatment.
- Any experiments with the keto diet are best done in conjunction with a doctor, considering some people face problems when transitioning to the low-carb diet.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.