DiscoverBeing Well with Forrest Hanson and Dr. Rick HansonImpermanence Anxiety: How to Live While Letting Go
Impermanence Anxiety: How to Live While Letting Go

Impermanence Anxiety: How to Live While Letting Go

Update: 2023-08-283


The only constant in life is change. Moments come and go, people enter and leave our lives, and we ourselves grow, change, and eventually pass away. While this is an obvious fact of life, we usually let it blend into the background, and coming face-to-face with it can fill us with understandable feelings of anxiety, uncertainty, and even dread.

In this episode Forrest and Dr. Rick explore impermanence anxiety: the fears we have related to change. They discuss “macro” and “micro” impermanence, terror management theory, the courage to care, fully embracing life, what tends to help people come to peace with impermanence, and how we can become more resilient in the face of change. Rick closes the episode by explaining how we can come more fully into the present moment, and see reality for what it truly is. 

You can watch this episode on YouTube.

Key Topics: 

0:00 : Introduction

1:20 : Macro-impermanence and micro-impermanence

9:25 : Terror management theory, and grasping the finality of bigger changes

14:50 : Fully embracing your reality

26:25 : Purpose, meaning, agency and acceptance

32:40 : Why change is scary, and recognizing our own fragility

38:10 : Repression, avoidance, and sublimation

47:05 : A walkthrough of the stages of insight

54:30 : Framing yourself in the broader reality, and letting go of painful things

57:40 : Recap

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Impermanence Anxiety: How to Live While Letting Go

Impermanence Anxiety: How to Live While Letting Go

Rick Hanson, Ph.D., Forrest Hanson