The Lack of Curiosity Killed the Cat
Albert Einstein said, "I have no special talents, I am only passionately curious."
Webster defines curiosity as a strong desire to know or learn something.
While most people refer to me as a curious person, in the last few years, I have learned that a large part of my internal "dead" feeling was due to my incuriosity.
I unknowingly (kind of) thought that I could live a pain-free life if I controlled my life and what occurred to me. I tried controlling my circumstances and the people I loved in hopes that, I would be "safe."
I learned the hard way that the opposite was true. The more I controlled, the less curious I got.
What I am learning is curiosity grows in an environment of the unknown and dies in a climate of control.
The more predictable my world became, the more bored and dead I felt. The pain was excruciating as not only I lived it, but I watched my loved ones struggling to find hope, joy, and peace in the sterile world of my authority.
When I began to get curious about what curiosity was, I had a tough time overcoming my assessment that I already knew. Once I decided that maybe I didn’t know what I didn’t know and that I’d like to live in curiosity about Curiosity - the veil began lifting from my eyes.
Now I find such joy and excitement every day as I get to get curious about everything. I get to live in a question asking myself things like:
- What does that mean?
- What could that look like if I let go of what I think it has to look like?
- Is that who that person is, or I am making that up?
- Is that possible?
To bring this into reality, let me share with you a very recent reality of curiosity in my husband and I’s life.
Growing up in America - we were very influenced by the American Dream. You get an education, find a good job, fall in love, buy a house, work most of your life, retire, and live the "good life."
That was so woven into the fabric of my being that I didn’t have a lot of curiosity around how much of that was true for me and taking me towards the desires of my heart. Day after day, I made choices that led me towards that I thought I was supposed to have. It was so limiting.
Recently, the owning a house part of the American dream has been getting in our way as we sold our home in the Midwest and are processing the housing marketing on the west coast. They are light years apart from each other.
In the last two weeks, we have been vacationing overseas. During the two weeks, we planned in a few work days. It has created a lot of curiosity around the joy our hearts' feel when we think about the freedom of living anywhere in the world and what is in the way of doing that? We are living in the possibility. We don’t have any answers yet; we don’t know what the future will look like, but we are having fun and finding freedom from stress as we commit to living in curiosity about what it could look like.
We are asking ourselves questions like:
- Why do we want to own a house?
- Is owning a home or the freedom to travel more important to us?
- If I let go of what I tell myself “I have to have?” and embraced “what do I want?” what would it look like?
- What would I be doing differently right now if I wasn’t so focused on buying just the right house?
While housing may not be your current struggle, what could happen if you added curiosity to whatever it is that is creating stress for you? What questions could you ask yourself to allow you the freedom to see something that you can’t see now?
I would love to hear how you are living in curiosity. Please share with us in the comments section.