As the holidays approach, and as we continue to go through challenging times, it is a good time for us to focus our attention on positive emotions and experiences. In the field of Positive Psychology there is discussion regarding how to increase the duration, intensity and appreciation of positive emotions and experiences. This practice enhances our ability to have pleasure. Positive emotions can allow us to flourish, by expanding our creativity, social connections, personal resources, and resilience. (Tugade & Fredrickson, 2007).
Fred Bryant, a social psychologist, introduced the concept of savoring. Savoring is the process of attending, appreciating, enhancing positive experiences, according to Bryant & Veroff (2007). We are encouraged to behave in ways that focus our attention on our experience of delight. Savoring is associated with mindfulness.
One can have three different types of favoring. Savoring the past is referred to as reminiscence. We can enhance our pleasure by sharing stories with others and remembering together. We can focus on a memory and increase the intensity of pleasure. In the present we enhance our positive emotions by enjoying all of our senses, what we see, hear, feel, smell, and taste. One may take a mental picture of an event, take a photograph, or write in a journal to build a memory. Savoring the future is enjoying our anticipation of an experience, by actively bringing imagery to mind, along with the positive expectation and emotion.