One of my favorite lines from Alice and Wonderland is "Curiouser and curiouser." I've forgotten when she says it in the story, but I'll never forget when my cousin, Zoe, first heard the phrase. Even at the tender age of five, she just knew it was important--and fun--to be curious. "I'm curiou-ker and curiou-ker" she shouted as she ran around the house.
She's held onto that idea. Last week, I talked to her after her basketball practice and she told me all the things she was learning to stay on top of her game. On Sunday, I talked to her mom and she told me she'd been the star player in her latest matches.
In my own life, I'm "curiou-ker and curiou-ker" about careers. I love to ask people what they do, what they like about it, and to investigate pockets of supply and demand in terms of job functions and the overall employment market. I call it fun.
I also read blogs about careers, and one of my favorites is Penelope Trunk's The Brazen Careerist blog. She always makes me think, and so do the Gen Y bloggers at her company. I've never met her, but I love her voice. She's got a great style, and she seems to say exactly what's on her mind--especially when it's controversial. I love that, but am more deliberative by nature and nurture. (I was born in Texas and own multiple pairs of boots, but worked in academia for years and became cautious about what was "said" and what is left "unsaid."). In spite of--and perhaps because of--our differences, I love reading Penelope's work. Sometimes I disagree with her, but often I think she's spot-on in her advice.
Today, she writes about learning--and the value and importance of being curious in our current recession.
People who are always curious and always learning are keeping the recession from killing their career trajectory. You don't need to have a job to be learning, you don't need to have a great title to be stretching your skills. And really, really, you don't need to go to graduate school and earn a degree to prove that you are learning. In fact, maybe you need to take a job you're not thrilled with, but remember that no one can dictate your learning curve. You control that.
I couldn't have said it myself. What are you curious about? And how do you show the world about your curiosities?