Thebastidge: Personality Part VII
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    Friday, August 03, 2007

    Personality Part VII

    Inquisitive - Introduction:

    People who raise children talk about a period in early childhood when every bit of new information is met with the question, "Why?" "You need to eat your carrots." "Why, mommy?" Or, "Why is the sky blue?" Or, "Why did Grandpa die?" Many of the questions never do get answered, but most children grow out of their incessant curiosity and find their own answers, however reliable, to the simplest and the most profound questions. Most children. But some never lose this curiosity. Into adulthood they are addictively inquisitive. "When a fly lands on the ceiling does it come in flying upside down, or does it do a quick flip-turn just before landing?" Most of us would say, "Who cares?", but for the truly curious such questions taunt them and haunt them. How about you? The following paragraphs describe the extent to which you are or are not inquisitive.

    Inquisitive: Your Personalized Description

    You are the inquisitive child who never stopped asking "Why?" Well into adulthood you still have an insatiable curiosity about the way the world works and why people behave in certain ways and not in others. Where most people would ask a question, get an answer and be satisfied, you press on. "Why do men and women deal differently with problems between them?" "Men are problem solvers and want to find a solution, while women are more interested in relating so they want to talk things through." Enough for some people. Ah, but you want to know, "Is this a difference in their brain structure, or is this something learned through cultural influences?" Probably some of each. Enough then, right? Not so fast. "But why don't cultures just alter the way we nurture women and men and try to resolve this difference?" And on and on and on. Why? Why? Why?

    Your curiosity keeps you stimulated, keeps you thinking and exploring and growing. You're always seeking out new facts, or new interpretations of known facts, or new comparisons of various interpretations. . . . .well, you get the point. You just keep pushing out the edges of the envelope, hungering for more information, more understanding. All of this makes you a very interesting person. You are lit up with your own curiosity; your mind is lively, your imagination always switched on, and you consistently have new insights that captivate you.

    Most of the time, your friends and colleagues are fascinated with what you bring to the conversation. Like few in the group, you have a way of taking conversations to a higher level by asking - and sometimes answering - questions no one else is dealing with and pushing everyone forward toward new knowledge. In your work environment your inquisitiveness requires the entire team to think outside the box, to be restless with what is now routine and willing to explore another way to make the product or offer the service. Among your friends and with your partner you are the one who gets everyone to consider a different approach to recurring problems or a different way to understand why you love one another and what it means to make commitments for the long run.

    But sometimes enough is enough. You exhaust the curiosity of others even as you're moving on to the thirteenth level of Why. They're ready to settle in to some boring conversation about ordinary stuff because their brains are worn out by your questions. "Give it a rest" is what they think, whether they say it or not.

    So you've got to be discreet with your inquisitiveness. On your own, have at it as long as you wish. But in the company of others learn when you've gone far enough and need to back off. Your curiosity is one of your great gifts to your work colleagues, your friends and even your partner and you don't want to spoil the gift by wearing out its welcome.

    This is Part VII of a series. Part I is here and VIII is also posted.

    Comments are welcome- especially from those who know me IRL.


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