If there is something that fuels out-of-the-box thinking more than anything else, it is curiosity.
I remember Jay Shetty on a podcast explaining a concept he called the “Why Ladder”.
Even though Jay was focusing on how one can let go of fear, I was capturing something else. I was marveling at how powerful curiosity is when it comes to problem-solving.
He was trying to explain how to let go of the fear of fear. Yes, you read that right. He mentioned that to get rid of the fear of fear, we have to get close to our deepest fear, get intimate, and then embrace it.
This can only be possible by getting to the root of your basic fear in the first place.
What are you most scared of? — Appearing too outward
Why are you afraid of appearing too outward? — I don’t wanna be a weirdo among my friends
Why are you scared of being a weirdo? — I don’t wanna lose their validation
Why do you need their validation? —
Keep digging until you can dig no more. The last on the hierarchy is your real problem and it is what you need to address.
In simpler terms, become curious and and watch how practically fearless you become.
If I have to admonish my younger self in a single sentence, It’ll have to do with an affirmation that curiosity is the soul to my growth and I should never relent in pondering on things, everything!
Let me tell you a fun fact, behind every entrepreneur or someone that is trying to break from the rat race; is a curious mind with a lot of unanswered questions.
“The future belongs to the curious.” — Anonymous
Do you know why? Because as the lonely mind is the devil’s workshop, so is a curious mind full of reasons and patterns for a better tomorrow.
Practically every single invention or breakthrough began with an element of curiosity. “What will happen if…” “I wonder …” “How about…?” — There is no mistake on this one.
“The people who don’t ask questions remain clueless throughout their lives.” observed the planetary scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson.
Only about six out of every hundred people have an IQ of more than 120 and Neil has a score of 123!
These guys are right. The future belongs to the curious and you can’t own it by being clueless. Remember that when next you want to commence market research or launch a campaign for your next product.
An amazing thing about today’s world is the unlimited access we have to resources in learning, from the most complicated to as least as how to sleep in a boring lecture.
Habits and skills can be developed and developing an intellectual curiosity is not an exception.
Chase what interests you and make it fun.
We’re all familiar with the notion that “curiosity kills the cat but satisfaction brought it back”.
What we didn’t know is that the cat has a goal. It wanted to get satisfied by a particular thing, and that is why it has its reward — coming back.
You can not know everything, and even though no knowledge is useless, the priority is definite, even for survival. Why not choose a profession that matters to you and become curious about the things in that specialty.
I take great interest in building startups and managing a company; and in writing. I spend my leisure time reading other people’s write-ups on digital marketing, finance, self-help, and I do that with relish.
I enjoy watching movies like Silicon Valley (HBO), watching Richard and the other programmers trying to make their mark in Silicon Valley.
I know what I want, I love these activities and chose them voluntarily with no inconvenience. Yet, I stumble on new things daily, new tricks, new ways to make myself better.
Developing intellectual curiosity has much to do with you having fun. Things you choose to do in your free time while your brain is perfectly relaxed without disturbing that balance.
It should never be laborious.
If reading books is a tedious task for you, as effective as it is in making you a better person, it should never be used to kindle your curiosity.
If you find listening to podcasts boring, you should consider other things.
Open your mind and keep your eyes on the price but this is your call!
All the best.