As they reach our front yard, Junior spots a shiny penny on the sidewalk. He hops off his trike, picks up the penny, and spends the next few minutes in a solitary game of Fetch – tossing the penny, retrieving it, and throwing it again. Eventually, it lands in the lawn. Lost!
No tears – just resignation – as magically, in place of the penny, a ladybug appears. He scoops the ladybug up in his hand and watches it crawl up his finger. With mom’s help, he masters the art of transferring the bug from one hand to another, until it spreads its wings and flies away.
No worries – there’s more to discover. The crows in the birch tree launch a caw fest. The little guy looks up to check things out, and his hat tumbles off his head onto the sidewalk.
Bending over to pick up his hat, he finds an earthworm. Dropping to his hands and knees, nose near the action, he patiently follows the worm’s wriggling progress from one edge of the walk to the other.
At this point, an airplane approaches. Junior jumps up, points it out to his mom and stands with his arm in the air tracing the aircraft’s path until it disappears from sight.
By this time, he has worked up quite a thirst. The little guy begs a sip from the juice box Mom holds at the ready, hops back on his tricycle, and off they go.
Over the course of 15 minutes, they moved a grand total of 15 feet. Not exactly a power stroll or roll! But, an extraordinary example of living and learning – approaching everyday experiences with a sense of curiosity and a spirit of discovery- with what we might call Beginner’s Mind.
Action: We were all beginners … once upon a time. Not that we are likely to remember the VERY early days. But over the years, we’ve learned how to talk, walk, ride a bike or drive a car, skate, play tennis or golf, be a partner or a parent, run a business or a family, and generally make a life.
No matter what our age and stage of life, the chance to learn with a Beginner’s Mind is always available to us IF we approach our everyday experiences with an open, inquisitive mind.
And so, I ask you, how did you come to your life today? With a ‘been there, done that, seen it all’ attitude, or (like Junior on his trike) with a sense of curiosity and a spirit of discovery. That, as they say, will make all the difference!
Quotes Of The Week: It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts. – John Wooden
A moment’s insight is sometimes worth a life’s experience. – Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
Resource Of The Week: Check out a brand new article on this topic in the Pauseworks Library: Live & Learn – Cultivating The Art Of Insight.