Be curious, not judgemental
What is the ‘guilty pleasure’ you can’t get enough of when you watch television? You know, the show you don’t always admit to watching, but privately, you will binge in a heartbeat?
Mine is watching reality TV; you name it, I have probably seen it. I have just finished the most recent season of Real Housewives of Salt Lake City. I can’t tell you how bad it is (and how much I loved it!) Admittedly, one of the reasons so many people watch these shows is seeing adults try and resolve a disagreement which invariably escalates into an all out screaming match.
Despite allegedly being ‘reality’ television there is not much in these shows that reflects real life, at least not for most of us. Can you imagine if cast members were actually willing to listen to different perspectives and ask questions without judgement, if they were prepared to be emotionally curious?
Being emotionally curious about other people and what makes them tick allows us to ask questions to build connection and trust. Emotional curiosity is listening to other people without assuming you know what they are going to say.
Being emotionally curious is not firing off questions and being insensitive to the feelings of others, but asking open questions without judgement in an effort to understand, rather than win, an argument. Absorbing what is being said by another and integrating it into our understanding of the conversation, circumstances or situation all involves emotional curiosity.
Is there a difficult conversation coming up where you can focus on being emotionally curious?
In case you missed it
A fabulous scene from Ted Lasso capturing the power of emotional curiosity