By: Lara Loucks, Certified Professional in Learning and Performance
The following is an excerpt from WCC Member Lara Loucks’ upcoming book – Chase It! Leveraging Curiosity for Business Results – due out Summer 2015. Curiosity has a brother, and his name is Fear. This makes sense and it’s not surprising. Curiosity and Fear are twins separated at birth. One grew up to be cautious, perhaps paranoid. The other grew up to be creative, perhaps careless. There is an argument that fear can be a healthy thing. Fear prevents us from investing in bad product design. Fear stops us from performing medical tests that endanger human life. Fear interrupts us from wasting time on penetrating a saturated market. Fear saves us money. That said, fear also prevents us from investing in GOOD product design. Fear stops us from performing medical tests that could SAVE human life. Fear interrupts us from spending time on penetrating an UNSATURATED market.
Research shows that the body registers fear the same, whether it is physical, emotional, or mental. Paul Tough explain this well in his book How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character. In simple terms, the amygdala cannot differentiate between the types of fear that you are faced with. Fear of commitment, the fear of thunder, or, the fear being curious. You will complain there are too many reasons to avoid being curious. I agree. So much so, that it is woven into our language.
Don’t buck the system.
Don’t poke the bear.
Let a sleeping dog lie.
No need to reinvent the wheel.
Don’t rock the boat.
Don’t upset the apple cart.
And the ever-so-famous, curiosity killed the cat.
Well, here are my questions to you:
What if you poke the bear and it speaks on awakening? Perhaps it gives the human race the meaning of life and world peace occurs.
What if we rock the boat, we fall in and the water disappears? Maybe we are left standing in a tropical paradise where geomagnetic energy is channeled and the earth’s energy crisis is solved.
Why do we say that satisfaction brought back the cat? It’s because when you chase what makes you curious, you discover the truth that sets you free. Pardon the triteness.
Obviously I am being extreme. Please do not poke a bear without proper training, equipment, and the having the world’s experts on bears present. If you decide to rock the boat, please make sure everyone has on a life jacket. Don’t kill any cats and try to resuscitate them. I really like cats.
It may seem strange that I start off with a strong discussion on fear. That’s because if I don’t bring up fear right from the beginning it will undermine our efforts in the long run. Fear is the elephant in the room when we start a discussion on curiosity. Now that we’ve acknowledged that fear exists, that fear saves us money, and that fear costs us money, we can move forward. We can admit that it is curiosity which drives product design, the creation of medical tests, and the research on markets. Now we can cut to the chase: how do we put aside fear and leave room for curiosity in our business?”
Lara Loucks is a talent development professional and author with over 20 years of experience. She holds the Certified Professional in Learning and Performance and Competent Communicator designations plus a Masters of Business Administration. Currently she serves as the Director of Training and Development for the South Florida Educational Federal Credit Union and owner of SkillzNow. She can be reached at (786) 444-5432 or Lara_Loucks@yahoo.com.