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The Art of Wonder

Hard to believe but true; as children we have a natural state of seeking out novel and new experiences, often basking in the wonder of a simple seashell or how an ear of corn has all those threads of silk but as adults we often lose this in our rush to get into the ocean or shuck the corn for the boiling water pot. In the process what do we miss out on and how will that impact us as Thriving Individuals and Practitioners? As you already know life can be mighty stressful on a good day so not being able to see, appreciate and take in simple but amazing things around us deprives us an opportunity, if only for a moment, to re-charge and invigorate ourselves.

The good folks at dictionary.com define wonder as: verb (used without object)

1. to think or speculate curiously: to wonder about the origin of the solar system.

2. to be filled with admiration, amazement, or awe; marvel (often followed by at  ): He wondered at her composure in such a crisis.

3. to doubt: I wonder if she’ll really get here.

verb (used with object)

4. to speculate curiously or be curious about; be curious to know: to wonder what happened.

5. to feel wonder at: I wonder that you went.

As a coach, having a “child-like sense of wonder” is considered a hallmark skill. Can you use that skill? Can you, in an effort to Thrive and Strive, find your sense of wonder about the clients you see or the situation you face? Have you recently allowed yourself to take a moment and marvel at the clouds as they roll in or the spiral of a pine cone?

As a regular reader of this newsletter you likely know by now that stress and the adverse effects of stress on our ability to Thrive is a much-visited topic. We know that stress impacts our capacity for a good night’s sleep, general concentration and so on. Rather than review the impact I thought we’d take moment to look at some suggestions for incorporating a sense of wonder in your every day experience.

If you can, suspend your daily routine for a moment and really look at something, anything, as you’re doing it. When was the last time you noticed how great it is to have running water right there in your kitchen sink? Have you ever wondered about how life is without it? I was struck just this morning as I was attempting to pull up crab grass in my garden at just how tenacious their root system and growing strategy is; go deep with the roots and wide with runners to spread your territory! Note that I said, “attempted” since I’m pretty sure the crab-grass kept a better hold then not.

When working with clients its often useful to keep as much of a grasp on our sense of wonder as possible. We don’t really know what motivates our clients or how they see a situation until we ask! Its also easy to assume that what we see in front of us is who they have been forever and often we don’t take the time to find out more about the lives they lived before they arrived to us. I’d be willing to bet you might be very surprised at the answers!

 

Here’s to wondering about what you’ll be wondering about this month!

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