Being Wonder-full

One day, many years ago when I was in Primary School I poured my little heart into a poem about an egg.

It ws a poem about the mystery of how a shell filled with goo could somehow transform into a living, breathing chick.

On this very same day, my connection with my sense of wonder was severed.

I don’t remember exactly what my teacher said to me in front of the whole class after reading my poem about the egg that day, but I’ll always remember the feeling of my cheeks burning red-hot with shame.

I’ll never forget the shock of it.

And, for many years I will remember the lesson I learnt that day – to wonder is to be naïve and stupid.

It took me over three decades to unlearn this lie.

Today, I understand that our capacity to wonder opens the window to our souls and that it is an essential part of our true nature.

In her book Thrive, Arianna Huffington shares the following:

Wonder is not just a product of what we see – of how beautiful or mysterious or singular or incomprehensible something may be. It’s just as much a product of our state of mind, our being, the perspective from which we are looking at the world. Einstein defined wonder as a precondition for life. He wrote that whoever lacks the capacity to wonder, “whoever remains unmoved, whoever cannot contemplate or know the deep shudder of the soul in enchantment, might just as well be dead for he has already closed his eyes upon life.”

This is the advice I wish I could have given to my little wonder-full self all those years ago:

Most grown-ups have forgotten how it feels to be full of wonder. The world has hardened their hearts and caused them to fear not knowing. But that does not mean you have to harden your heart. Keep on wondering. Keep on bravely exploring the things that intrigue you and the things you don’t understand. Continue to be curious about the unseen order of things. Learn out loud. Trust that this will guide you through a truly wonderful life.

Self-Fidelity Practice To Play With

This week I invite you to slow down and reconnect with your sense of wonder by journaling on a few reflective questions.

  • To begin, think about the first time you remember experiencing wonder as a child
  • Journal about this experience – Where were you? What happened? Try to capture as many details as possible
  • Now, reflect on the feelings you associate with the event – write those down also
  • Finally, take a few minutes to reflect on what this short activity has illuminated for you

“Wonder is the beginning of wisdom.”

Socrates 

I create Hello Monday Morning to give generously and give often to a growing global community of self-fidelity pioneers. My weekly posts share small yet mighty self-fidelity practices to uplift working life. Subscribe here and get the first two chapters of my book Self-Fidelity for free.

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