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What is an awe-inspiring experience?

Knowing Awe is better than Knowing-It-All

For me living in awe is living in your Sweet Spot – where your passion meets your purpose.

 What is the difference between living in your Sweet Spot and living in the zone of “Scraping By Just Fine Ma’am”?  In your Sweet Spot you feel a sense of awe and mystery. You feel like you can never get enough, never know enough because it is not something to get on top of, its something that takes you somewhere that you trust because you feel so alive in your Sweet Spot. If you feel like you can never get enough of something, you know there is nothing else out there for you to do.

 I remember when a friend of mine was getting married and someone compared her marriage to shopping for earrings and asked “I understand that you might find a pair of earrings you really like but aren’t you scared that down the line you’ll find another pair of earrings you like better?”

The bride-to-be told our friend that if she spent her whole life with her husband it would still feel like it could never be enough time with him. She felt like she just couldn’t get enough of him. So she would not be looking for anything else.

 I guess one way to know you are NOT in your Sweet Spot is by noticing that you are looking for something else. If you need to Know-It-All you may be driven by a need to be superior to others. Living a life with the purpose of outsmarting others is not really that smart. You are selling yourself short if you believe that your purpose is to be better than others.

 If you can’t stop asking yourself “Is this for real?” you might just be in your Sweet Spot. In my work with super-creative ADHD people, I feel so honored to get a front row seat on people who create reality rather than are defined by it. People who live in their imaginations and have interests so vast and varied that you could never get bored for a minute being with them. People who were scarred by what they were told in school, but haven’t stopped being the class clown and showing up with break-through ideas. I think living in your Sweet Spot means having to pinch yourself that you get paid to do what you love. Or being in a relationship with someone that lights you up so much you can hardly believe it’s for real.

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)


Wondering if you've ever had an awe-inspiring experience? Answer yes or no to the following questions to find out. Have you ever had an experience when...

  • You had no sense of time or space?
  • You couldn't express it in words?
  • It felt like pure perfection?
  • It seemed truly holy?
  • Something greater than yourself seemed to absorb you?
  • Everything seemed to disappear from your mind?
  • Everything in the world seemed to be part of the same whole?

Results: If you answered "yes" to at least four of the questions, it's very likely that you had some kind of awe-inspiring experience. Congratulations? That sense of awe is a big part of what helps make us happy.
These days, of course, the word "awe" gets thrown around like a dish rag. LeBron James, awesome basketball player. What an awesome skirt you just picked up at the sale. That wave? Totally awesome, dude.
For now, let's break away from the word's informal and loose definition of awesome and dissect it a little deeper. Awe - a relatively unstudied emotion that exists somewhere along the boundary line between pleasure and fear - can come from a variety of stimuli. We can be in true awe of Tahitian sunsets, an artist's masterpiece, a tear-inducing symphony, a hero's actions, or a heavenly slice of tiramisu. When we experience awe, we react by engaging all of our attention, thoughts, hopes, and needs. It consumes us, primarily because it's an experience in which we feel - really feel, deep in our solar plexus - as if the world is bigger than us. Why? More likely than not, it's because those awe-inspiring experiences are both unexpected (we couldn't see it coming) and mysterious (we have no idea how it came to be). In many ways, that's exactly what happiness is all about: Finding our path to happiness through the things in our life that help us experience feelings of awe.

YOU: Being Beautiful: The Owner's Manual to Inner and Outer Beauty

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.