Savoring is the art of slowing down a moment enough to be fully in it, while it is happening, with presence and gratitude. Fully savoring pleasures of all kinds – from small sensual pleasures to the deepest joys of intimacy and connection – is a skill set that we humans can develop, on purpose, over time.

The Science of Well-Being course from Yale highlights savoring as an essential practice for overall well-being and happiness:

“Savoring is the act of stepping outside of an experience to review and appreciate it. Often we fail to stay in the moment and really enjoy what we’re experiencing. Savoring intensifies and lengthens the positive emotions that come with doing something you love.” ~ The Science of Well-Being

The practice of Savoring can bring a full body positive experience, create lasting benefits for our entire being, and create meaningful bridges between people through shared experiences of pleasure. Savoring, when practiced consistently over time, develops our ability to feel more pleasure and joy – these positive body states become easier to access and we are able to drop deeper into our experiences. In a very practical way, Savoring is the practice of expanding our capacity for feeling.

In this podcast episode, we share the why and how of Savoring – why it is such a powerful practice and how to put it into action in your life.

Practice Savoring:

Once a day, "catch" a moment of pleasure. Slow down the moment, and extend it if you can.

Use all of your awareness to feel the pleasure as deeply as possible. What are you aware of? What do you feel? Where do you feel it?

Write it down - on a post-it note, in your daily journal, or post it here in the comments! Logging your pleasures is a way of helping "install" the experience into your system, thereby sensitizing your awareness for more pleasures down the road!

Remember, as simple as this all sounds, the ability to "catch" and "install" moments of pleasure turns out to be a major factor for well-being and social connection! Don't underestimate the impact of practicing Savoring over time!

★ Savoring has been studied by science for the past few decades thanks to the field of Positive Psychology - here is one of the leaders of this new field on the TED stage.

★ Dr. Rick Hanson is a buddhist neuroscientist and one of the people we most enjoy learning with about how our human bodies are wired - and what we can learn about our bodies to experience more pleasure and connection of all kinds. Here he talks about the science of taking in the good.

★ Savoring is training for feeling our feelings more fully - and yes, that includes ALL feelings. This training also prepares us for feeling the big scary ones like anger, fear and grief - we need training for these parts of life as well, right? Here, Elizabeth Gilbert shares her experience of feeling grief as fully as she was able.

Use the comments thread here to share your experiences with Savoring - or ask any questions that will help you deepen this practice!