What is on your 'savoring list' for the weekend?
What do you hear when you hear the word “savoring”? Maybe you relate it to food or drinks, such as savoring a tasty morsel or a fine glass of red wine. But what else can be savored? How can you incorporate savoring into your daily lifestyle? Wikipedia will tell you that savoring is the “use of thoughts and actions to increase the intensity, duration, and appreciation of positive experiences and emotions, or simply the up-regulation of positive emotions.”
Positive psychology embraces the idea of savoring not only the highlights of life, but the seemingly mundane and everyday experience that are fleeting or ignored by most of us. In my personal experience, I have recently become more mindful of savoring the process of growing a child. I’m 37 weeks pregnant and happy to report I have a healthy baby girl ready to burst into the world any day now. Everyone keeps asking me if I’m ready for the experience to be over since I often report severe back and hip pain, lack of sleep, acid reflux, and the unending feeling of fullness within my engorged belly. It seems to me that the consensus is that I should want to kick this baby out of my womb and look forward to the impending late night crying and hourly feeding. But that’s just not me. I decided that I wanted to savor this process from the beginning; the process of growing a child. What an amazing feat; women’s bodies are awe-inspiring life-givers and I appreciate that. Thus, I’m here to savor every day of this 9-10 month journey. I’m okay with the nausea and the fullness and the backaches; I endure them head-on in a positive, understanding way that makes them not only bearable, but pleasurable.
What if I cannot have another child? If so, then this is will be the only time in my life I’ll ever experience these feelings of symbiotic development. If I’m lucky enough to have another child, I’ll savor that pregnancy similarly to this one; even if I throw up for the first three months of it. It’s all worth it. But now that you know my story, I want you to think about your own life and your own savoring. Savoring is as simple as enjoying a sunset or reflecting on an interesting conversation with a stranger or feeling the wind in your hair as the fall weather blows through your car on the way home. A feeling or event doesn’t have to be substantial to be savored; it’s the process of savoring that enhances your thoughts, feelings, and emotions and makes seemingly small or unimportant events into positive experiences. I want you to think about a couple of questions as you finish reading this blog:
- How much of the day to you take time to savor?
- What moments do you let slip away without really processing and appreciating them?
- What are the negative events or moments in your life that you can focus on with love, empathy, and understanding that you may find to not be negative at all?
- How can you commit to savoring one moment every day?
- How can savoring make you more present in your life?
- How does savoring make life more meaningful? More happy? More full?