Did you know that people who are naturally curious are more positive, energetic and interesting? 

Many people are born with a sense of curiosity, a desire for knowledge and new experiences. If you’re a curious person, you are open to finding new ways to discover, learn and explore. Researchers have found that curious people stayed more positive and productive during the pandemic lockdown. That innate sense of inquisitiveness and wonder encouraged those of us who are curious to learn how to use Zoom, take new classes, try new hobbies, and explore new interests to bring the outside world into our homes and stay socially connected.

Curious people tend to be more creative, imaginative, insightful, eager to learn new things, and open to expanding their areas of interest. Curiosity enables us to make social connections more easily and maintain relationships with people who share similar interests. It also opens the doors to new opportunities and leads to the joys of discovery and a sense of accomplishment.
Curiosity in learning a new skill or participating in new experiences activates several parts of the brain promoting positive feelings like pleasure and happiness while enhancing memory.

Curiosity in Many Forms
Bronxville resident Julia Murphy believes that a sense of curiosity makes life more fun. “You have to be open to trying something new,” says the retired attorney. “The universe sends you opportunities all of the time.” Before the pandemic, Julia enjoyed traveling around the world to destinations including Ireland, the Channel Island of Jersey, and Cuba. A self-described “adventuresome” person, she was able to stay positive and active at home by using her imagination and taking a variety of virtual classes: from yoga to fiction writing to the history of the French Revolution. “I started learning Spanish by watching a Spanish language soap opera on TV,” laughs Julia.

Ray Morse, a retired IBM management development trainer in South Salem, has always been curious about the world around him. “I had to be curious growing up,” says Ray. “My brother was 15 years older and already out of the house so I had to entertain myself.” Ray adheres to a “keep moving and keep excited to explore new interests” philosophy. He stays mentally and physically active by going for walks outside and playing golf, as well as taking virtual poetry and exercise classes. “I was a physics major at Purdue University,” says Ray, “So I keep up with the science section in the New York Times, and watch programs on science and nature on PBS.”

Add Curiosity to Your Life
A curious person is never bored. You can add a sense of curiosity to your life by intentionally looking at your surroundings with “fresh eyes.” Curiosity generates positive benefits for mind and body. Add a new experience each week or month to promote curiosity. Try taking a class in art, writing or photography. Explore international cuisines by trying new recipes. Read books in a different genre or by authors from around the world. Listen to a variety of music or take ukulele lessons.

Curiosity extends to staying physically active. Take a walk at an outdoor nature center or botanical garden, or explore a new hiking trail. Take lessons in a sport you’ve never tried. Sign up for a dance, tai chi, or yoga class: virtually or in person.

Why not aim your curiosity in a different direction and start online research to fill in the missing branches of your family tree? You may want to spark your curiosity by searching for a childhood friend or first sweetheart. Taking that first step and reconnecting with a special person can be incredibly rewarding!

Stay positive and stay curious!

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