Week 3 of Wonder: Practical Magic

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SOUL STUDIES: Prompts and questions to explore WONDER in your life, business and creativity.

This is your weekly reminder to carve out time for yourself, anchor yourself to your values and contemplate how you can allow the monthly theme to permeate throughout everything you do.

So… crack open that journal, and commit yourself to the prompts and exercises below! This is how you leverage your Color Your Soul subscription the most -- by absorbing these insights and then actually applying them in your life!


Week 3:

Practical Magic

 

For a few weeks now we’ve been bringing our attention to wonder in an effort to experience the world through a childlike lens.

My original intent in choosing this theme for the month of December was to try and counteract some of the more stressful elements of the holiday season. I wanted us to try and balance the hustle and bustle with peaceful revelry in the magic that’s always surrounding us.

The only problem with this approach? It’s all too easy to let wonder and magic fade to the background when it feels like you have a hundred things to do. Right? I mean, taking even just a moment out of your day to marvel at the vastness of the sky or to watch the delightful interactions of two hummingbirds... it seems a bit frivolous, doesn’t it?

Even I have had a hard time keeping awe and curiosity and delight center stage as I finish up holiday shopping, mail off cards and wrap up 2016 projects — and I’m the one that picked the theme!

So, in an effort to shine the spotlight back on the power of wonder again, I thought I’d offer up a more practical approach to WHY wonder should be a valued tool in our soulful arsenal.

It starts with this fact I just learned: Curiosity actually changes the chemistry of your brain.

Yep, it’s true. In this video, The Science of Wonder, the narrator explains that there is actually scientific proof that when your brain experiences curiosity, not only does it experience pleasure and reward thanks to a release of dopamine, but it also primes other centers of your brain to retain information.

My practical interpretation of this study is that wonder not only makes us feel motivated, but it actually sharpens our wits too!

That doesn’t sound frivolous at all!

Wonder sharpens our senses and our memory. It wakes us up to our surroundings. It primes us for learning. As it turns out, wonder is quite practical.

So, to put this insight into action...

This week I want you to write down ONE way you can use this tool of wonder in your daily life in a PRACTICAL way.

Here are some examples that might pique your curiosity 😉

  • Before starting a project or task that requires brain power or focus, try Googling something you’ve always been curious about to start your focus session by learning something new!
     
  • When you experience mental fatigue throughout the day, take a break to look out a window or go for a walk and see if you can notice something you’ve never noticed before.
  • When you’re meeting someone for the first time, challenge yourself to ask questions not based on typical small talk but on something you’re actually curious about knowing about the other person (bonus: it may just help you remember the conversation better!)

Yes, I believe wonder is about removing the “film of familiarity” from life so that we can see the world with renewed enthusiasm. But, as it turns out, having a general curiosity about things can be used as a tool to give you a nice brain boost.

That’s what I call practical magic!

This month’s last Soul Studies message will land in your inbox on Christmas Day next Sunday, but I hope those of you celebrating the holiday will be too busy with family or friends to notice. :) I hope you’ll find time to read it before Jan 1st when the next CYS issue arrives, but if I don’t talk to you until then, please enjoy the rest of the season and whatever holiday traditions you celebrate!

Look for the magic and let’s carry that brain boost right into the new year! :)