Curiosity – creativity, learning and happiness best friend

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I saw my dear friends recently. I am a God mother to their youngest. A 12 year, beautiful child. As i was away for some time and their tastes and preferences evolved in the meantime, i chose to put together a bag of goodies for their senses. A little something to spoil their taste; a little something else to spoil their skin. He opened the bag to smell and taste the goodies. His natural curiosity was met with his parents’ reprimand “it’s not nice to do it”. “Why?” i asked. “It’s the most natural thing to explore new things and learn about new stuff. Please, let him enjoy it”.

Curiosity unwinds creativity. “What will happen if i’ll add these and these?”, asked my kid the other day? It showed her unexpected shades and forms to add a different, new, creative touch to her school project on “Look beyond”. See a related post on https://lovevonbeautyvonlove.com/2016/05/27/look-beyond-borders/IMG_0803

Curiosity is a youth elixir for the brain. New research shows that inquisitiveness can actually improve learning by stimulating the brain’s reward system. In other words, curiosity serves as a form of internal motivation that can help us learn more quickly (Source: Gruber M, Gelman B, Ranganath C. “States of Curiosity Modulate Hippocampus-Dependent Learning via the Dopaminergic Circuit.” Neuron. 2014). If you are curious about a topic, the learning becomes enjoyable and memorable.

We all aspire to happiness. In a 2007 survey of more than 10,000 people from 48 countries published in Perspectives on Psychological Sciences, happiness was viewed as more important than success, intelligence, knowledge, maturity, wisdom, relationships, wealth and meaning in life. One of the most reliable and overlooked keys to happiness is cultivating and exercising our innate sense of curiosity. That’s because curiosity — a state of active interest or genuinely wanting to know more about something — creates an openness to unfamiliar experiences, laying the groundwork for greater opportunities to experience discovery, joy and delight (Todd Kashdan, https://experiencelife.com/article/the-power-of-curiosity/).

Curiosity is inborn. Remember the awe in a child’s eyes when she sees snow/rain for the first time? For a variety of reasons it gets strangled and reduced to silence in time. It took me years to recover and see my sense of curiosity. The market and jobs demand innovation. Letting a child open the bottles and boxes of new smells and tastes can lead him to a new learning experience – French people tastes e.g.– and new discoveries. It will also help him make a difference and get used to innovating. 

“What will happen if I’ll melt that chocolate and add the orange organic marmalade?”, he asked. “A great new brownies”, I would say.

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