Which One Are You: Curious Or Cynical?
by: Chris Whaley | February 21, 2017
Have you ever noticed that cynical people are rarely curious? You know why? Because they think they already know the answer (and it’s not usually good, reliable, or accurate by the way.)
On the flip side of the equation – Curious people are almost never cynical.
I like people who are relentlessly curious. I am sure it is my world these days, but I am wildly intrigued with the child-like approach my grandchildren have toward life. I have four that can talk and one that is up to about fifteen words. When they were with me over the Christmas holiday, I think they asked about five hundred questions (don’t you loathe people who exaggerate?) in two days. I think we crammed more questions in on those two days than most people ask in six months.
It dawned on me that there are 8 characteristics about curious people. They:
Never stop learning –
Ask great questions –
Are interested in others and in new experiences –
Don’t settle for standard answers –
Push the boundaries –
Smile when no one else does –
Believe when most people don’t –
Widen their universe when everyone else is narrowing theirs –
The curious do these things.
I’ve decided that I want to become more curious, not less curious (which seems to be the normal pattern) as I get older. As a Legacy Adult, it will keep you always willing to look for new ideas, new ways, and new solutions … and keeps you from turning into the resident cynic.
9 Ideas For Becoming More Curious
So how do you become more curious? Here are a few suggestions to get you and I started:
1. Plan some thinking time. Busy-ness is the enemy of wonder, among other things. You can’t wonder when you are constantly in a hurry.
2. Click. When I read my Twitter or Facebook feed, I find if I click on the links and notes in other people’s lives, I grow more curious. Particularly if they are not like me.
3. Ask more questions. Great Legacy Adults ask questions even more than they give answers. Jesus was the best ever at asking questions. And people who ask questions are just more fun to be around – aren’t they?
4. Give fewer answers. I have to battle the desire to have an answer for everything. Giving fewer answers in every day conversation can help.
5. Don’t be afraid to say, “I don’t know.” Because often it’s way more true than we admit anyway. And, saying “I don’t know” can lead us to a better answer later.
6. Wonder. Kids wonder. Adults stop wondering. Reverse engineer this in your life.
7. Be thankful. Stop taking things for granted. Gratitude can make you more open-to everything.
8. Ask, “Why not?” Why not, after all?
9. Dream. You used to do that didn’t you? Where does it say that people over 60 don’t have the luxury of dreaming anymore?
You know what this means? In a good way, we must become more child-like. In Matthew 18:1-5, it says,
“At that time the disciples came to Jesus and said, ‘Who is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’ Then He called a child to Him and had him stand among them. I assure you, He said, ‘unless you are converted and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child – this one is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one child like this in My name welcomes Me.’”
I wonder how many questions He got on this experience from the disciples?
The call of Christ is to have a child-like trust, not childish attitudes. For Legacy Adults, this child-like ability to look at the world with curiosity may be more important than we realize.
Just so you know, I have prayed that you would always be curious! You are loved and prayed for!