I used to get impatient when my kids would ask questions that started with 'what if...?' It meant that I would have to come out of whatever thought I was in and try to answer a question that probably didn't have an answer. I simply didn't have the patience to go into this imaginary place and try to come up with an answer.
In hindsight, I really wish I had been a bit more indulgent with them when these questions came up. Knowing what I know now about how children develop and the importance of curiosity, I think I may have missed an opportunity. Granted, I'm sure there were times that I did answer their questions to the extent that I could, the memory that comes to mind is one where I didn't.
This surfaced for me when I recently partnered with the VIA Institute (Values In Action) to create an assessment for my community of followers to learn more about their core values. The results from assessment will then be incorporated into beautiful works of art by each of the participants in the class I'm creating. It's a fun and informative way to learn about what your core values are. Here's the partner link where you can take the assessment and see for yourself where your values are the strongest: VIA Character survey (Ann Humes). It only takes a few minutes, and the survey was designed by the pioneers of Positive Psychology.
Guess what my top value was? Curiosity. That's when the memory came back about how I dismissed my children's 'what if' questions. Ug, it hit really hard. How could I not indulge their curiosity when that was my TOP VALUE?!? It was one of many outcomes of me living outside of my essential-self (remember that blog? If not, here's a link: Which Self Matters?). This is the reason why I find it so important to actively pursue living your best life. It enables you to give more to those around you and share your gifts! I hope I never find myself so disconnected from my essential-self again that I routinely fail to stay present with those I love. Life is too short and there are so many wonders to explore.
I'll leave you with a few questions to consider. What came up for you when I shared the story of being impatient with my children? Is this something that you can relate to? If you take the assessment, what did you discover about yourself that you didn't know before? Do you feel as though your current life fully embraces your core values? If not, what do you think needs to change?
Until next time, my wish for you is that you can live in a fully present state of mind.