A Coaching Power Tool created by Pamela Rudisill
(Women’s Transformational Coach, UNITED STATES)
Wonder is the spark before the flame. It is the black around the stars. Wonder is nothing and everything, the force that draws you in and pushes you away. Without wonder, there would be no inquiry. Sans inquiry, life would have no answers. Wonder can be the beginning of something big, or the end of a mistake. But it always leads to questions. Author Unknown
Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit. e. e. Cummings
The meaning I picked, the one that changed my life: Overcome fear, behold wonder. Richard Bach
He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed. Albert Einstein
How many of us would like something more in our life; something exciting that will pull us toward that which we desire: the realization of our hopes and dreams and living our very best life? How do you turn your life around if you are stuck, unhappy, and do not know where to turn?
The Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English defines:
ennui as a feeling of being tired, bored, and unsatisfied with your life.
Dictionary.com defines it as:
a feeling of utter weariness and discontent resulting from satiety or lack of interest; boredom.
Far too many people spend day after day taking the same steps and making the same decisions, working at jobs that drain all of their energy, and tolerating people and situations that are not aligned with their values or dreams. All for what? The ability to pay bills, avoid confrontation and fear of the unknown, and, perhaps, because they have settled into a mild, or severe, depression and do not know how to make the changes necessary to feel better.
What are the signs and effects of living with ennui?
Financial instability, overeating, under eating, depression, low self-esteem, relationship problems (cheating), lack of energy, excessive sleep, poor work performance, and seeking thrills that could prove harmful can all be signs of ennui.
How can we turn this debilitating state around?
Discover wonder. Be curious. Use it to propel us toward a change for the better. Changing our mindset, or perspective, to one of curiosity and wonder will open up worlds of possibility for us and can switch on the excitement needed to change our life.
The World English Dictionary defines “wonder” as:
(n) the feeling of something strange; a mixture of surprise, curiosity, and sometimes awe; and (vb) to indulge in speculative inquiry, often accompanied by an element of doubt ; to be amazed at.
We often think of wonder as being in the domain of children; their eyes bright and eager, the sheer delight they experience when discovering something new, and the inevitable questions that follow. In watching children experience wonder, we witness a shift in energy that as adults, we long to experience. How many times have you noticed an upset child, inconsolable and on the verge of a tantrum, suddenly become quiet or squeal in delight when introduced to a fuzzy caterpillar or the taste of strawberry ice cream? Their woes are quickly forgotten as awe and curiosity about this new discovery take over. Imagine what we, as adults, could do with the power of wonder in our own lives!
As we mature, we tend to lose our wonder when we learn to protect ourselves with what writer and creativity consultant Jeffrey Davis calls “Survivor Brain.” When met with a new idea or information that somehow threatens us, Survivor Brain assuages our ego by calling up our know-it-all stance, which closes the mind to wonder.
Another way we lose our wonder is by the often rigid and conformist teaching we receive during our years of formal education. Thinking outside the box is not always encouraged.
We sometimes build a wall around us when we have had to face several problems and make uncomfortable decisions personally and professionally. When we find a comfortable spot, Instead of remaining open and curious, we often put on blinders to avoid having to deal with yet one more problem.
What are the signs and effects of living with wonder?
Wonder breeds creativity. Look at the life of any creative person and you will find curiosity and wonder. It is unlikely you will find boredom. A curious person is not content with what they already know. They become fascinated with possibilities, ask questions and dream. They wonder “how” and “what if.” A person who welcomes wonder lifts himself or herself out of the ordinary and into the extraordinary!
- To what degree does ennui affect my life?
- How can I benefit from becoming curious and cultivating wonder?
- What steps can I take to experience wonder?
- How will I measure the effect curiosity and wonder have made in my life?
- How do ennui and wonder affect the coaching environment?
- How can I, as a coach, benefit from incorporating wonder into my coaching practice?
- How can I recognize ennui in my client?
- What questions, tools or assessments can I use to help the client become more curious and experience wonder?