How To Overcome Worry With A Spirit Of Wonder


Sep. 21 2021, Published 4:55 a.m. ET

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This world is full of situations that can trigger worry – falling ill, losing a job, navigating conflict in a relationship, and much more. Yet you can develop the strength within you to overcome worrying about the stressful circumstances around you. Pursuing wonder can prevent your life from shrinking down to the level of circumstances that make you feel anxious. When you encounter wonder and feel awe, you gain a greater perspective on your circumstances that can empower you to overcome anxiety. Here’s how wonder can help you overcome worry:

Wonder Can Shift Your Perspective

Discovering and enjoying the wonder around you lifts your perspective beyond your concerns to the positive possibilities that exist for you. Wonder can help you stop worrying about what scares you and start hoping and working for the best in your circumstances.

Worry can’t actually prevent anything negative from happening in your life. Worry can’t accomplish anything positive for you, either. So, it’s completely useless to worry, and worrying drains valuable time and energy.

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Rather than worrying when you feel afraid, choose to pursue wonder instead. Do something that sparks awe in your soul. Go outside to stargaze, take a wonder walk, pray or meditate, laugh with a loved one, enjoy music, savor a meal, etc. The possibilities for experiencing wonder are endless. The key is to intentionally search for wonder. By moving forward toward wonder with purpose, you’re training your mind to become more aware of it.

When you find wonder, your state of mind will rise above worry as your perspective shifts. Wonder can push worry away, according to research. A study from the University of California – Riverside found that a sense of wonder can relieve the worry of waiting for uncertain news. Participants in that study had to wait to learn about test results that worried them: their IQ scores, and ratings on how their peers perceived them. The group who experienced a sense of wonder from watching an awe-inspiring video of a sunrise with music showed significantly less anxiety and more positive emotions than the other participants did.

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Wonder can relieve your fears. If you’re willing to intentionally pursue wonder despite feeling afraid of what might happen, you’ll discover feelings of awe that will enlarge your perspective and help you find hope.