Crucial Curiosity

Can you still remember being young and curious? Not the general kind of curious that is almost a curse these days, where we’re all curious about what’s happening to celebrities and politicians. I’m talking about the pure kind of curious that kids have built in, where they wonder about any and everything.

The tendency of boys wanting to deconstruct everything is a good example of this. The action has nothing to do with being destructive but everything to do with being curious, about what’s happening inside the toy car, blender, hair dryer and even mom’s laptop!

I see this with my 7 year old daughter and 2 year old son, where every so often, a new world/dimension opens up to them with the discovery of something new and fascinating.

Watching this process unfold is amazing to say the least.  They start observing something with a frown, and then gradually their faces begin to light up as they discover and start to grasp this new thing.

I recently listened to a podcast by the amazing Tim Ferris, where he interviewed a truly fascinating guy by the name of Walter Isaacson. Walter talks about how this curiosity fueled the inventions of Leonardo Da Vinci, Benjamin Franklin and even Steve Jobs.

He then spoke about how the great Da Vinci only had an elementary education, which ended up being a blessing in disguise. The fact that he did not go through formal higher education meant he stayed curios and had to figure everything out for himself. He was forever busy exploring amazingly diverse subjects like why the sky is blue and even what a woodpecker’s tongue looks like!

This got me thinking about myself and the general level of my curiosity. I realized that probably up until my mid twenties, I was extremely interested in a hugely diverse array of subjects. I loved learning new things and was always excited about discovering some obscure fact. Sadly, a lot of this enthusiasm and curiosity has faded away and it’s one of those things that happen very gradually.

Luckily it’s never too late to change and I’ve made it one of my focus points to start being curious again. Even more important though, is that I want to instill this in my children and to make them acutely aware of just how important it is to stay curious.

We’re embarking on a new chapter in our family’s life in 2018, where we’re planning to slow travel while working remotely, home schooling our kids and experiencing the world with them. Apart from the fact that we want to spend more time with them, while they’re still young, one of our biggest dreams is to expand their horizons and spark that very important curiosity!

You can follow this journey at: The Unconventional Family

Curiosity is idle only to those who fail to realize that it may be a very rare and indispensable thing.

Alistair Cooke


PS. Do yourself a favor and listen to this podcast:

Lessons from Steve Jobs, Leonardo da Vinci, and Ben Franklin


Written by Tertius