If you remember, part of my hypothesis is that living with curiosity can, first of all, reduce the stress in my life and also set me up to be more responsive and therefore more effective. One way curiosity can do that is described here. The other day I experienced another way in which being curious can help.
First, I need to explain that I have always been a fairly hopeless flower arranger. When a bouquet needs fresh water, it always ends up looking worse for wear after I have taken it out of the vase, cut off the ends of the stems, and put the flowers back into the vase with fresh water. Because of this, I very often just add water without cutting off the ends thereby shortening the lives of the flowers.
Well, last week my brother sent me a gorgeous bouquet of fall flowers. For the first week I took a path between the two possibilities outlined above—I took the flowers out of the vase, cut off the ends I could get to easily, and put the flowers back in with fresh water. This morning I decided I would do the job properly and would make it an exercise in curiosity: How had the florist put the bouquet together so that it looked so good? How many flowers of each were there? Were they cut straight across or diagonally? Which ones looked best in the middle? Which on the outside? And so on. In the end, I had a good-looking bouquet ready to survive another few days and felt relaxed and pleased about the whole thing.
Is there a task you dread that might be more pleasant and successful when approached as an exercise in curiosity?