An Awesome Way to Make Kids Less Self-Absorbed

by Vicki Zakrzewski, syndicated from Greater Good, Dec 19, 2013

We teach children how to measure and how to weigh. We fail to teach them how to revere, how to sense wonder and awe.
Harold Kushner

A recent study that examined the empathy levels of almost 14,000 university students between 1979 and 2009 found that students have become dramatically less emphatic over the years, particularly since 2000.

In addition, narcissism, which correlates negatively with empathy, is on the rise amongst university-aged students. Narcissists, by definition, are extremely self-focused and tend to see other people in terms of their usefulness rather than true friendship—not exactly a recipe for empathy.

But new research suggests another way: awe.

Very little is known about the experience of awe; however, several new studies, many conducted by the GGSC’s Dacher Keltner, have shown awe to be a potentially powerful positive emotion that might just help our students develop empathy.

Here’s how it works: (Read article here)

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