Hope is eternal and that seems to be the case today; with all the modern challenges confronting us, hope is all that we have left – enabling us to reach deep within ourselves to confront these challenges head-on. I am sure that you have all heard the tale of Pandora and her box. Allow me to recap the tale especially for those who have not heard it before. The gist of the tale is that the Olympian gods decided to gift Pandora with a lovely box but with specific instructions not to open it.
Pandora being inquisitive did so and as a result let loose all the ills of the world out of the box before closing it shut, leaving hope to remain. And when you take a closer look at this legend and draw modern parallels, you will see that we have encountered several challenges in the course of history when the situation seemed bleak and that the world was ending.
But hope remained strong and we had overcome those adverse circumstances; be it the black plague or the crusades or the Second World War we have seen more than our share of adversity. And in each one of those cases, we have been able to surmount these challenges thanks to hoping which is eternal.
A recent study managed to showcase a different aspect of hope that was surprising to all; while it was assumed that hope was a personality trait and more indicative of an optimistic person. In reality, it seems that this trait is common to all of us and that some of us have a more empathetic nature and naturally more hopeful than others. But what the study further highlighted is the fact that hope continues to shield one’s brain from negative emotions such as anxiety and stress.
It should be pointed out that more research is required to study the impact of hope on the human brain but the one thing that we can confirm is that the more hopeful we are, the less anxious we tend to be – so think back to stressful situations that you had faced in the past. Eventually, you had overcome those challenges but there must have been a certain period when you started feeling more hopeful and as a result, your anxiety must have decreased. That’s hope at play and while more research on the same is being carried out, the one thing that we can all agree on is that hope is indeed a powerful emotion and one that causes us to experience a range of positive emotions from optimism to being cheerful and optimistic.
Hope, as far as the scientists have been able to determine is distinctly a human emotion and one that appears to be critical to our well being as well. Since it protects the brain from additional stress, it prevents us from developing several health complications as a result. So the next time you feel overwhelmed by certain events, you may want to recite the lists of things that you are grateful for and this should help alleviate some of the stress.
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