Curiosity has been the spark that has driven some of the greatest learners over the ages. From Elon Musk to Jane Austen, those who have had the most desire for creativity, innovation, growth and progress all tend to have this one thing in common. It’s also something that has a big impact on whether or not the rest of us are able to remain motivated and committed to a journey of life-long learning. So, how do you spark your own curiosity to ensure that you’re learning as much as you can and open to everything that life has to offer?
- Move away from the screens. There is no doubt that watching an entire series on Netflix isn’t going to spark the same curiosity as simply picking up a book. In fact, reading is something that many of the most curious people have in common. For example, those in the top 1% of income earners are committed readers of self-help books. 85% of successful people read two or more self-improvement books per month.
- Unclutter your mind. The easiest way to open up space for curiosity is via meditation. This creates a whole area of openness where you can think about your thinking, have original thoughts and tap into the wellspring of your own creativity.
- Break the bubble structure. Many of us live in something of a bubble where we are constantly surrounded by people who think, do and act the same as we do. This can create a situation where you don’t ever feel stimulated because you’re not being asked to reconsider your views or look at something differently. Collaborative thinking with people who don't necessarily come from where you do can be a great source of progress and innovation.
- Change the way that you use social media. If you’re currently trawling through Instagram or Twitter while stalking exes or looking at posts that make you compare yourself negatively to the people posting them then it might be time to shift the way you use these platforms. Social media can be a huge source of inspiration and spark curiosity whether that’s through quotes or music, book suggestions or events.
- Ask yourself for the answers. Especially in the age of email and Google often our first reaction to a problem is to ask for help. Get into the habit of posing questions to yourself as opposed to someone else or the internet. What comes to mind when you think about the problems that you, or others, face and what solutions do you think are worth a try?
- Indulge in playing games. There is a body of research that identifies certain types of games as incredibly beneficial when it comes to curiosity. Real-time strategy games, for example, help us to learn how to think quickly, to develop new ideas and have the confidence to voice alternatives and follow the trail where curiosity takes you.
Curiosity is the secret to motivated learning and these are some of the best ways to ensure you’re continuously sparking it.
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