Curious? II

Another interesting quote from Todd Kashdan’s book:

“Many prodigies in a wide variety of disciplines start off by playing music, writing poetry, or shooting hoops because it feels good, but this pleasure is often obliterated by the pressure to succeed. Basically, when curiosity and interest disappear, the benefits go with them.” (p. 37)

Although few of us are prodigies, most of us can probably relate to the inherent pleasure of an activity at times (or often) being undermined (or overwhelmed) by a focus on results. (I believe it is the focus on results, not this kind of success, that Kashdan is talking about)

Do you think the golfer that is cursing at his clubs starting golfing as a way to increase his anger or because he enjoyed figuring out why it is so hard to hit the ball straight?

Did the doctor that is now rolling her eyes at her patient choose the profession hoping to be jaded by people or because she was interested in helping others and solving mysterious ailments?

Reconnecting with the curiosity that led to our professions and performance domains can help us reclaim what we found to be so interesting about them in the first place. And then you’ll perform better, just as when you first became curious. And then you’ll be more likely to get caught up in results….only this time maybe you’ll remember that curiosity is what allowed the results to happen in the first place. Isn’t that curious?

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