As I was walking back to my office this past week, and I entered into the breezeway just around the corner from my office, I looked up just as I came under the overhanging second floor. Why?
To see if the second floor was aligned with the top of the building. Wait, what? Yes, I did. Why, you ask?
I’ve been more present to my own curiosity, and sense of wonder, this past week.
Do you remember being a child, when everything, and I mean, everything was curious to you. Yep, me too.
Though early childhood memories are often fuzzy, I can remember that feeling of inner-joy as I explored every inch of my environment. Every inch.
I think retaining that childlike wonder and active curiosity about our lives and the world is important to our own development.
Alright, well, let’s see what others think of curiosity, shall we.
“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.” Albert EinsteinAwaken the Greatness Within
“Life must be lived and curiosity kept alive.” Eleanor RooseveltAwaken the Greatness Within
“Don’t let anyone rob you of your imagination, your creativity, or your curiosity. It’s your place in the world; it’s your life. Go on and do all you can with it, and make it the life you want to live.” Mae JemisonAwaken the Greatness Within
There are so many good quotes about staying curious. Why? Well, let’s take a look at why; yet, as always, I’d like to first define curiosity. Here we go.
noun /ˌkjʊəriˈɒsəti/ /ˌkjʊriˈɑːsəti/(plural curiosities)Idioms
[uncountable, singular] curiosity (about something) | curiosity (to do something) a strong desire to know about somethingOxford Learner’s Dictionaries
There. When we remain curious, we are actively acknowledging there is much more in the world to know about than is known. Yes, by us, and by everyone else for that matter.
I’ve written many times about the known and unknown, and, essentially, that it is the space between the two where people choose to grow or not.
We can choose to go back towards what is comfortable, known, and remain as we are today; or, we can choose to go towards what may be uncomfortable, unknown, and grow.
Those that are naturally curious, are intrigued by the smallest things in life. Things that other people might pass right by without even noticing.
In fact, I think people that are curious have a keen awareness of themselves, which means they also have a keen awareness of the world around them.
Alright, then, here are
7 Reasons Why Remaining Curious Can Move You From a Fixed Mindset to a Growth Mindset
1. Recognition of the unknown
When we know that there is much more to learn about the world, and everyone in it, than we actually know, we are instantly curious.
Being curious is about being real with ourselves about all that we know, and all that we don’t.
Just writing that last paragraph makes me smile. Smile because I know everytime I leave my house, there is an opportunity to learn something from someone. Always curious. Fun.
2. Replacing what is known with new knowns
And, as we learn more about the world from other people, we get to replace some of our knowns with new knowns. How?
Well, humans often get stuck inside of limited thinking. Thinking that because they are an expert in a certain field, that their learning is complete. No so.
Every topic and subject is incomplete from a perspective of all there is to learn. Really. Every topic and subject.
When you are in a conversation with someone that proposes that their perspective is the final perspective on a topic, you can smile internally knowing that is not so, and remain curious about the topic.
I guarantee you there is more to learn and to know.
3. Remaining hopeful about the future
When we are curious, we are naturally hopeful about the future. We have to be. Why? Because being curious means believing in a future where growth and new possibilities flourish.
More, it means actively creating that future every day. One idea, goal, or dream and corresponding action at a time. Beautiful.
4. Recreating ourselves each day
Curiosity, like all things, starts within. When we do our internal work, inquiring into why we think and feel the way we do, we are actively interested in recreating ourselves often. Every day, in fact. Really.
In each moment lives the possibility of something new, a new possibility for that moment, and then, yes, the corresponding context, and the greater world. It starts with us, and goes out from there.
5. Regenerating our sense of self in each moment
And, as we recreate ourselves, we also create a new sense of self. We let go of the person we were, and welcome the developmental iterations that will come as a byproduct of our own curiosity and interest in ourselves.
And, guess what?
When we treat ourselves with this kind of respect, that respect, along with the curiosity and interest, go out to others. It will infect them with a renewed sense of who they are as a human being.
Wonderful to watch and be a part of.
6. Reinventing the contexts we engage with
As we recreate ourselves each day, we also reinvent the contexts that we’re engaged with. Why?
Because, as we recreate ourselves, we are leading a transformational process that will affect everyone around us. It has to.
And, as we reinvent our contexts, we get to invite other people to participate in our curiosity. Our curiosity, yes, about ourselves, first, and then our curiosity with other people, the work they do, the possibilities we see as a product of the work we are doing in ourselves. Much fun.
7. Remembering our truth
When we remember our truth about the human being we are, and the future human being we are actively creating each day, we stay curious. Curiosity is a transformational practice.
When we remain curious, we get stuck less often. We feel more connected to ourselves and to everyone else around us.
We are, in effect, living our lives as a child would, full of wonder and hope. Knowing that dreams do come true, because we actively see them come true all the time.
When we live our truth, we see the world through a whole new lens; and, part of that lens is a lens of the curious being that we are all meant to be.
When we are actively curious, question all things, we are living in a growth mindset, which really just means that we are open to learning about all things from all people.
We are open, flexible, and eager to learn.
A growth mindset is about learning as much as we can, and then using that knowledge to create the life we want to live. Each and every day.
Curiously pondering everything around us, wondering, dreaming, and then taking all that we learn and applying it to our lives.