Members in the Media
From: BBC

Awe: The ‘Little Earthquake’ That Could Free Your Mind

Whenever Ethan Kross finds himself in a mental rut of worrying and negative self-talk, he walks five blocks to his local arboretum and contemplates one of the magnificent trees in front of him, and the astonishing power of nature.

If he can’t get to the arboretum, he spends a few moments thinking about the astonishing possibilities of aeroplanes and spacecraft. “I think about how we went from struggling to start fires, just a few thousand years ago, to being able to land safely on another planet,” he says. 

The aim, in each case, is to evoke awe – which he defines as “the wonder that we feel when we encounter something that we can’t easily explain”. 

Kross’s habits are founded in scientific evidence. As a professor of psychology at the University of Michigan, he knows feelings of awe can have a truly profound influence on the mind – enhancing our memory and creativity as well as inspiring us to act more altruistically to the people around us. It can also have a profound impact on our mental health, by allowing us to put our anxieties into perspective.

Read the whole story: BBC

More of our Members in the Media >


APS regularly opens certain online articles for discussion on our website. Effective February 2021, you must be a logged-in APS member to post comments. By posting a comment, you agree to our Community Guidelines and the display of your profile information, including your name and affiliation. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations present in article comments are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of APS or the article’s author. For more information, please see our Community Guidelines.

Please login with your APS account to comment.