We don’t teach Curiosity - we help you uncover it.
Our focus has always been on how to cultivate more curious minds. In over ten years of practical experience facilitating curiosity programs, we’ve identified 7 assumptions or biases that obscure our innate gift. Like most biases, they tend to morph into unconscious habits. Habits that impact on the quality of our relationships, stress levels, problem-solving and decision-making capabilities and our capacity to adapt to change.
We call them the 7 Veils of Incuriosity suggesting curiosity isn’t so much taught as uncovered. When they are stripped away, we can get tantalising glimpses of what’s possible as our curiosity re-emerges from the confines of a closed mind.
Here a quick look at the first veil (you can sign up to our monthly newsletter here to receive more information on all 7 Veils of).
Veil # 1 The assumption that Answers are more valuable than Questions
More than merely designing and then asking better questions, this veil explores the bias we have towards quick, "right" answers. Whenever a culture values answers ahead of questions, curiosity will inevitably suffer. Answers, of course, can be fantastic, we love them as much as anyone, but they will never transcend the questions that generated them. For example, questions like; “whose fault is it?”, “why am I such a loser?” or “how can I win?” are unlikely to generate much optimism, creativity or curiosity. Nor are they likely to move us towards deeper understanding, learning or useful solutions.
Similarly, if the answer is the goal (looking knowledgeable, sounding decisive, being "right" etc.), then the temptation can be to dumb down the questions - think politicians who avoid questions until they hear one that fits their pre-packaged answer. At home, at school and work, we are rewarded for answers, oftentimes at the expense of better questions. Until we unveil that bias, our ability to ask great questions - to be curious - will be hamstrung.
“Every problem is solved by finding the right question to ask.”
Questions are the first expression of curiosity. At Curiousmind, we do teach how to form and ask better, high CQ (curiosity quotient) questions as a way of improving curiosity. However, teaching questioning skills without addressing this underlying bias is ineffective - it would be like trying to teach Rambo conflict resolution skills. Change usually requires us to let go of some old assumptions.
Approximately 45% of the daily decisions we make are not conscious choices; they’re habits; unconscious, default behaviours that we've picked up along the way. Our research has shown that becoming more curious is part skill, part intention and part letting go of old habits and biases. We use an online habit builder to help people accelerate their learning by creating new, curiosity enhancing, habits.
“Computers are useless. They can only give you answers.” - Picasso
In our monthly newsletter we'll be discussing the 7 Veils in more detail with tips on how you, your loved ones and team members might better harness the extraordinary power of curiosity. You can sign up to our newsletter here