I met a woman and her husband yesterday as I was hanging out in my favorite mall coffee shop. They were very friendly, and we had a lot in common, so we chatted for quite a while. He was telling me that they were getting ready to be relocated to the other side of the country. It was a promotion, so he was getting more money, and better benefits. But nevertheless, they were both nervous. They had both lived in this relatively small town their whole lives, and were going to be moving to a big city. You know how it is, right? You feel comfortable, like you’ve gotten the hang of everything, then suddenly it gets all turned upside down. You don’t know if you will be ok, or get what you need. You don’t even know where to start because everything is so new. On the one hand, you are glad to have this opportunity, but on the other hand, you are nervous, because you don’t know how this will turn out, and you don’t even know how to proceed.
They were telling me how their daughter was just learning to walk. She just turned two. She is at the age where you just become really curious about everything. You see something new, and you want to discover what this is. The only requirements are that you haven’t seen this before. You spend your whole existence, exploring, and walking around. Touching things, smelling things, tasting things. Many neuroscientists think this is the greatest resource of humanity, the power of curiosity. To seek new things. To search and discover simply for the sake of searching and discovering. You will never know when you will find this useful and interesting.
It’s like sometimes as adults, we can just let go of any expectation, and just let our curiosity lead us. We are old enough to stay away from danger, and to know this is a resource when we see something we like. Many of the great discoveries that we still use today came from when people were just able to let go of expectations and ask “What if?” Life can seem dreary and repetitive when we forget to do this on a regular basis. Let your curiosity lead the way.
They were telling me their happiest times (so far!) of being parents was to watch their kid find something she thought was exciting, and just feel good for discovering this. Like you can really feel a sense of accomplishment when your curiosity has led you to something cool like this. She was telling me that she likes to follow her kid around in bookstores, just like the one we were sitting in, and watch her daughter go through the joys of being able to learn something new.
Which is why he was telling me that although they were a bit nervous about leaving their comfortable small town, with the same people and the same shops and the same restaurants, they were really excited about moving to the huge metropolis where they were going. He said that he jumped on the opportunity when it presented itself. I’m sure they will do fantastic in their new life.