I recently had the pleasure of joining Madelyn Blair for her radio show Unlocked, where we discussed the benefits of learning to approach the world with the wonder & curiosity of a child. With my background as an anthropologist, I’ve been trained in looking for what is sometimes tongue-in-cheek described as “vuja de”: learning to question the assumptions we’ve learned to overlook by seeing the world with fresh eyes.
As children we haven’t yet learned the routines, habits, and norms that become so ingrained in later life. While these structures can serve us well, they can also be hindrances at times. In a volatile or uncertain situation, if we’re depending solely on our old routines to guide us, we may find ourselves uncomfortably at a loss. By training ourselves to regularly engage our curiosity and childlike wonder, seeing our familiar world in a new light, we can keep our minds nimble and ready to face new challenges when they arise. This is one way to build our resilience.
In a world which is constantly changing, technology can be a way to continually explore our curiosity. With the power of the internet I can experience the surface of distant planets or explore ancient scrolls; our access to new information is unprecedented. Equally, the speed with which which digital technologies evolve provides an ever-changing digital landscape for us to explore. This can feel overwhelming but it is also an easy way to help ourselves find our “vuja de.” You can hear more strategies from Madelyn and I on how to engage your childlike wonder on this episode of her show.