Perhaps I should confess up front that I am one month into a four-month time-off to think about my future plans. As such, it’s an excellent time for me to be giving special attention to curiosity. I think my greatest success will come from being open to—or curious about ;-)—new ideas and directions, or at least new aspects or approaches to my tried-and-true.
It was in this spirit that I went off to the information session for prospective PhD students at a very prestigious business school. I’m no stranger to academia, so that aspect wasn’t particularly new or scary to me, but I was aware that it was a little like aspiring to the thin air of Everest when I’ve been living and working at sea level.
Mindful, though, that it was my first day of A Year of Living Curiously I tried to enter into the session with curiosity.
What went well:
- Calmness that came from realizing it was an information session only with no pressure on me to impress anyone at this stage (a great help, not feeling the need to make any particular impression)
- Attentive interest in the videos they showed of PhD candidates presenting their research, even though neither topic had a lot to do with my own work
- Asking a few fairly penetrating questions to get a picture of what kind of atmosphere and life would await the few people admitted
What went less well:
- Openness about the other people attending who struck me as a somewhat sullen lot and whom I did not try to understand or appreciate
Ah, well. At least it is only Day 002. Onward.