24 February 2011

Learning From Children

The other weekend I was relaxing with my cousin and his young child and whilst observing his mannerisms I had so many take away moments with regards to things that young children can teach us that I felt compelled to share them with you. It’s some of the most basic things that we forget about that we can remind ourselves of just by observing the way a child behaves and views the world that can catapult us to wealth and happiness.

Children are always venturing out into
the unknown to try new things, and have a fearless attitude. It is this instinctive behaviour that allows them to learn and grow. At a young age, we were all once like that. However, as we grow older, we tend to lose that natural fearlessness to try new things. We become more comfortable with where we are and everything becomes habitual, almost robotic. Over the weekend I was reminded that we should always be seeking out new experiences to maintain a steady flow of ideas and knowledge and to open ourselves up to more wonderful opportunities. It reminded me of a quote that read:- ‘The core of mans' spirit comes from new experiences’.

My cousin’s child spent countless hours coming up with imaginative things to do with various objects that were lying around. When I was playing with him it struck me that all huge ideas to do with business, wealth etc stems from an idea. It all begins in the mind. By continuing to be creative, we find ways of bringing our ideas to life. We continue to find ways to make those things which seem impossible become a reality. One of the most amazing examples of this is the Wright brothers who believed that with enough creativity and by trial and error, they could eventually send man to the skies, and they accomplished this with the plane, which brings me nicely onto my next key learning!

Persistence. I know this one may be a little cliché, but children continue to try things until they win through. One of the reasons why persistence is one of the most difficult characteristics to adopt simply because so many negative thoughts get in the way when you seem to be experiencing very little positive results. I remembered over the weekend however, that the more you keep pushing, the weaker the barriers they come and eventually the floodgates open!

The final one that I will mention ties in to the point I made earlier about being fearless. I remembered a quote which reads ‘success is failure turned inside out’. In other words, its impossible to truly succeed without failing. When a child makes a mistake, they simply become curious as to why that occurred, correct, and try again. This ability to be persistent, as mentioned before, and to continue to expose themselves to mistakes allows them to learn and take in new information at a rapid rate. I then remembered another excellent quote which seemed to ring true when I saw my nephew steadily making the same mistake over and over until he finally managed to do it right. It was from Thomas J Watson who said this about people desiring to succeed quicker:- ‘If you want to succeed, double your failure rate!’


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