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Why Words Matter Newsletter March '21

Hello there!

When was the last time you felt the spark and drive of curiosity? Are you a curious so-and-so by nature, or was it something out of the ordinary that piqued your interest?

Great thinkers and writers over the centuries have (mostly) agreed that curiosity is part of the human spirit. E. M Forster went so far as to list it as one of the four characteristics of being human, alongside a free mind, and a belief in good taste and in the human race.

It allows us to see beauty in the everyday, pick apart the world around us and see how things work. It’s what compelled Alice to continue her (curiouser and curiouser) adventure through Wonderland.

In business, it’s this continual exploration, a thirst for knowledge, a passion to question, understand, experiment and learn that makes our service or product a success.

“Everyone is born curious, but only some retain the habits of exploring, learning, and discovering as they grow older.”, author Ian Leslie says. “Curiosity is a muscle — use it or lose it. It’s something that we consciously have to nurture in ourselves, in our families, in classrooms, at work.”

So, how can we flex that muscle and retain a curious mindset? Here are some ideas.

  1. How to get better at the things you care about - Eduardo Briceño, TED Talk (video) An engaging TED Talk about the difference between learning to improve and performing to be the best. Briceño argues that we need both throughout life - but what if, instead of spending our lives doing and performing, we spent more time exploring, asking, listening, experimenting and becoming?

  2. Learnings from 30 years of curiosity and empathy - Creative Confidence Podcast An exploration of the 30 year career of IDEO's Executive Design Director, Jane Fulton Suri. She reflects on empathy in design, the challenges of human-centred design, and why it takes real courage to bring curiosity to any project.

  3. Six point checklist to be well-liked and influential - Creative Boom A fun, lighthearted article full of career tips that we should all take note of. When it comes to curiosity, they suggest leaving your ego at the door and putting your active listening techniques to good use.

  4. The art of active listening - UX Collective Service designer and psychologist, Lauri Lukka talks us through why listening is a key skill in business, and the basics of active listening: focusing your attention, asking better questions, paraphrasing and summarising.

  5. If you don’t know, ask - Tidy Content Alongside ‘let us think about it’, something we say a lot here at Tidy Content is 'let's find out'. We've learnt over the years that it's okay not to have all the answers - part of the fun is the discovery and learning. As curious so-and-sos, we write here about our belief in asking lots of questions early, and how to make sure you're using your ears too.

That’s all for now! Did you find anything interesting you’d like to share or chat about? Just reply to this email and let us know!

Stay safe,

Nia and Adrián

Tidy Content

(If you enjoy this email and know someone who would get a lot out of it, please consider forwarding it to them. Or if you were forwarded this email, maybe sign up so you can receive it each 1st of the month - it’s on us! ;-) )


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