On the first day of Christmas I gave this gift to me – EXPLORATION

16Dec09
SRT in a mine
Image via Wikipedia

I thought it would be cool to think – over the next few days – about gifts to include on our holiday wish list.  First on the list is EXPLORATION, which empowers us to open wide the windows of our hearts and minds.  A willingness to explore is a willingness to discover within and without all that is available in life.  To look at the old as if it were new.  And the new as if it were old.

To step outside of what we know, to visit another viewpoint, another country, another way of doing things, is an act of bravery. And brave acts, once completed, invigorate and energize us.

There’s something about EXPLORATION that doesn’t come naturally.  At least not beyond the toddler years.

I grew up in a small town, maybe 5,000 people.  Even now I long to go back to those days, those people, the certainty that the next person I met along the street would be like me, think like me, share my taste in food, probably my religion.  I envy my girlfriends who married hometown boys and never left.

Maybe I’m not so unusual.  I read recently that the older you get, the more you want to go backward in your life, not forward.  I get that now.

But, no matter, it’s too late anyway.  I peaked behind the curtain too many times to imagine that I won’t do so again.  You have too.

We like to blame it on fate or “the cards we are dealt”, but the truth is we have often chosen, unconsciously or consciously, to trade in door #1 for the uncertainty of door #2.  And have been enriched in the process.

The mind, once expanded to the dimensions of larger ideas, never returns to its original size. Oliver Wendell Holmes

With the gift of EXPLORATION we will continue to walk into the unknown.  Map in hand (if we are lucky).  Our travels, whether on the road or in our minds, will include some dead ends and the inevitable, time-sucking wrong turns.  But, and this is usually a “hindsight thing”, we will learn the most from these detours.  Smooth sailing never makes a good story.

Remember “the bigger yes”?  Never happens without EXPLORATION.  Contarian thinking?  Duh, EXPLORATION.   Add it to the list.

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