Fuel critical thinking and continuous learning.

Curiosity is the state of being curious: inquisitive, wondering, ready to poke around and figure something out. A study showed that 80% of the participants consider curiosity as important for new discoveries, but only 20% felt curious. The positive thing is that curiosity is a skill or a muscle that can be trained. The cornerstone of curiosity can be explained by the questions: How good are you to solve problems in a creative fashion? How god are you to cope with extreme anxiety? How open are you to other ideas? And how inquisitiveness are you? TalEction, believe many people have put their curiosity on hold at work and school, because they are unable to exercise their curiosity. We are born to be curious, but after a few years, it fades out. It can be irritating having someone asking questions all the time. But now, we need curiosity, we need new answers and new questions. Robot´s master all old questions and answers. We need to use our reasoning and curious power to beat the robots and to evolve as human beings.

Curiosity can be activated either by an event (pub quiz, flash, TV program - episodically) or by people; individual curiosity, trait curiosity, dispositional curiosity (understand metal attitudes). The latter form of curiosity predicts most whether a person is curious or not over time. Genuine and natural questions are feeding our curiosity and sparks off creativity, critical thinking and enhance learning. Pub quiz or trivia evenings are episodically and fades out before your are at home.

TalEction want to recreate the power of curiosity - the skill, that fuels creativity, critical thinking and learning. According to World Economic Forum, these skills are the most important skills in the Industrial Revolution 4.0 and can only be powered by curiosity and reasoning (intellectual curiosity).

Einstein, Jobs and Walt Disney are three extraordinary people. What do they have in common? Intellectual curiosity - passion about curiosity. Einstein said: I have no talents, but I am passionate about curiosity!

But, they have even another thing in common: dyslexia. Research has proven, that people with dyslexia, has an abnormal thinking pattern. When they get a question A, they add perspectives to the thinking process(g – m – l – s - etc), before giving the answer (to almost every question). People with dyslexia, don´t know the answers (also to simple questions) and they need to try and error. Normal thinkers: they get a question A and simply give the answer to A, directly without de-tours. People with dyslexia reports that the de-tours are fun, creative and increase learning and made them more critical and humble. They think about their thinking (meta-cognition) and try hard to be smarter and more effective. But, when their curiosity is satisfied, they move on to next problem or situation. Steve Jobs was a fantastic leader in the start-up phase, left the company during documentation and integration phases and came back strong in a more mature organization. The prime minister of Norway, Erna Solberg, said she is predisposed to dyslexia. She is known for her work capacity (working hard) and her curiosity.

In the 1950s, Greatbatch had left the Navy and was working as medical researcher. He was building an oscillator to record heart sounds when he pulled the wrong resistor out of a box. When he assembled his device, it began to give off a rhythmic electrical pulse. It was then he realized his invention could be used as a pacemaker. Playdoh was developed as wallpaper cleaner, but ended up as a toy for children. Steve Jobs told the engineers: ”I want you to built a phone that I can be in love with? This is not an: A – A process, but the engineers have to ”think outside the box” or get permission to do so.

Today, employees have very little maneuverability to exercise curiosity in the workplace. Business owners must change the organizational culture, eg change organizational structure (change responsibilities and create new dependencies) , introduce teamwork (“stimulate the emotional part of our brain”), practise self- management, replace manage with more leadership and full digitization and data-exploration. This kind of workplace will facilitate curiosity and fuel creativity, critical thinking and enhanced learning.

Since Curiosity killed the cat for many years ago, there is not much research on the topic. But, with one honorable exception, we wish to share the following research: please spend 10 minutes to learn more about curiosity and neuroscience (how does your brain react to curiosity?):

Key findings:

  1. Questions energize people and arouse the curiosity.
  2. Two areas of the brain are activated: midbrain (eg alertness) and nucleus accumbens (eg cognitive processing of motivation).
  3. These brain-areas are connected to the reward system, eg money (extrinsic). The brain anticipate a cognitive reward, ie information.
  4. Reward system is connected to the wanted system and the dopamin circuit, you want more and more information. The dopamin helps you to seek information and make you happy, again and again.
  5. When curiosity is energized, two areas in the brain get increased activity: Hippocampus (memories and part of ”limbic system” – also called ”the emotional brain”) and midbrain (eg alertness and sensing) and the communication between them. The interaction enhances learning (author: can be improved by using meditation, eg mindfulness).
  6. Wanting system warms up hippocampus (memory) and make it ready to received almost any information, including irrelevant information. The brain is put in a state being seduced to all kind of information.

Gruber, in the video says; IQ is not the only factor to predict academic and work success. Also curiosity can predict success (part of the emotional brain). The combination: high IQ and high curiosity is very powerful. Talection want to finds out more about Curiosity and BIG 5.

We want to test your Intellectual curiosity: Take IQ tests , BIG 5 test and a Curiosity awareness test in order to give us data to explore the power of curiosity. Findings will be published. Data will be threaten according to GDPR and anonymous and respect. Test-results: Awareness test

Level of CuriosityDescription
HighCritical thinker, creative thinker, learning agility, flexible, humble, stress tolerant.

Curiosity and critical thinking
1. Critical thinking consists of three parts: Curiosity, Skepticism (healthy questioning attitude) and Humility (admit wrong). Increase your curiosity and improve your critical thinking. Critical thinking is important due to biases. People have two strategies: defensive or pro-active: Defensive: People being a part of a tribal or a group. Then you have to take a stand, eg ”I am green”, Be great again supporter”....This defensive attitude create obstacles to critical thinking. People in the group is friendly to each other - ”I do not need to question them”. People outside group are enemies – ”I do not need to listen to them”. Pro-active: Genuine curiosity can be a bias agent. I want to learn something new. My curiosity can be an important resource for my critical thinking and overcome obstacles and challenges.

Want to read more about curiosity?

Curiosity is one out of 5 most important skills for the future: Curiosity, Assertiveness, Grit, Empathy, Sense of Urgency – CAGES.

Start exploring now by creating a user at TalEction.

Create User