Wednesday, December 02, 2015

In the Pursuit of Interest

In the Pursuit of Interest

The other day I was having a conversation with a friend about kids--most of my friends are at the age where they are starting their families so this is kind of been a recurring topic. And the conversation was about how you talk to kids, how you shouldn't just tell a girl they look pretty or to boys that they're  just brave-- that you should really think about how you address them and how they can read into those words.

I explained how I am always telling kids how clever they are because I think that that's a more powerful idea for them--based on intelligence more than gender roles . But we were also talking about what type of questions should you ask when they're a little older. More than "what toy is that" or "how old are you". Something more imaginative. 

I thought we should ask about what's interesting to them--encourage thought beyond the simple factual into the more creative. To see what they are starting to value as they come to understand that the world around the is more than food, toys, parents and Sesame Street, And as we dived deeper into the topic, my friend and I both realized that interesting was an odd word choice mostly because we don't talk to each other as adults that way.

And it's kind of true – – with most people the conversation is how's your job, your spouse, how's your kid, how's your dog? But outside of that--most people don't allow for more open ended conversation--I'm not much better though.. 

I don't know if it's just life after a certain age; you have a job, go home and make dinner, you play with your spouse/dog/kid, pay some bills, watch some TV, workout... And you do that about 4 to 5 days week so there's not much room for new things to connect with people on. Or is there?

So I've decided to experiment by not only doing more things outside of my schedule… But also opening more conversations with these interesting things and seeing people can meet me halfway. It's kind of like using my work skill set – – no yes no questions, no expected conversation points, and just trying to see what happens if I put the opportunity out there... Do people want to talk books, museums, yoga, documentaries?

So I benefit both by becoming more interesting myself but also opening more doors to interesting conversation with others. Maybe it will even inspire doing interesting things with different people which is always a good way to live.

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