Moving from Stewing to Savoring

There are a lot of things that happen during a day – some good, others okay, and some not so good.

In the not so good category, you might be going over in your mind:

  • A conversation you had with a friend that didn't go the way you had hoped it would go.
  • The expenses for the month and how you will stay within your budget.
  • A new project you have volunteered to do and how it will add hours to your already full day.
  • Concern for a family member or friend who has a serious illness.

Probably, we have all done our share of stewing over issues like the ones mentioned above or other similar situations. Yet, stewing leads to higher levels of stress and the unhealthy hormone cortisol which creates more anxiety and tension. If anything can cause you to be stuck, stewing certainly can. 

When those "not so good" things happen, what, if anything, can you do to put yourself in the best possible mental state?

Recent research indicates the simple act of daily finding things to be grateful for and savoring them will increase your ability to get a good night's sleep and wake up more refreshed and positive about the day. Feelings of thankfulness have tremendous positive value in helping you cope with daily problems and achieve a positive sense of yourself. 

Gratitude balances you and gives you hope. However, for it to meet its full healing potential in your life, it needs to become more than just a Thanksgiving word. You have to learn a new way of looking at things that lets you savor them. Some of the benefits of savoring are:

  • Stronger relationships.
  • Improved mental and physical health.
  • Finding more creative solutions to problems.

Savoring is a skill that can be developed. It is thinking about a person or situation in your mind as you are aware of your feelings. Here are five ways for you to practice and develop savoring:

  1. When you get good news, share it with others who are important to you.
  2. Take time to make a mental picture of what you want to remember later, such as how someone looks and sounds. Notice the colors in your picture.
  3. Focus on your senses so you can be more engaged with the moment (see number two).
  4. Take time to notice and focus on the feelings of the moment.
  5. Remind yourself that good moments can be fleeting. Be present in the moment to relish the experience so it will be easier to recreate when you choose to savor it.

Savoring can connect you to the past or future. When you choose to remember a special time and recreate it, you are connecting to the past. When you choose to imagine something you are looking forward to doing, you are connecting to your future.

It has been said that savoring is the glue that bonds people together. It is essential to long-term friendships and relationships. When you savor together, you want to stay together.

My hope for you is that you will begin today to practice savoring. It is not too late to add this important skill to your life. 

Click on the comment link below and comment about your experience with savoring.

Until next time,



  1. Sylvia says

    I love this information!!!   I will use it when I talk to my son.  We have been trying to talk more about "Life Skills" that I want him to work on.                                                                                                                             And I will be focusing on savoring moments myself, as I make a new cage for my guinea pig!  That is really a fun project, as opposed to others that I don't want to do…                                                                                       

     to Dr. Patten!!!

    • Maurine Patten says

      Hi Sylvia,

      I’m glad you found it helpful. Let me know how your conversation goes with your son. Good hearing from you.

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