Curiosity & Creativity at Every Age
By: Naomi Matlow
“Late bloomers are those who find their supreme destiny on their own schedule, in their own way.” – Rich Karlgaard
We live in a society that praises (and perhaps over-praises) speed, efficiency, and the wunderkind. Most of us were not childhood prodigies, CEOs, or Oscar winners before we could legally drink. The majority of us do not peak in high school, college, or even in our early career exploits. But the good news is that late bloomers have a lot to be thankful, and praised for, too. According to late bloomer, publisher of Forbes, and author of Late Bloomers: The Power of Patience in a World Obsessed with Early Achievement, Rich Karlgaard, “Everything we know about the human brain and aging tells us that we have a remarkable capacity to stay creative and innovative deep into our lives.” So take a deep breath, no matter how old your lungs are, and know that you are still and always beginning and becoming.
We all know how old the Mark Zuckerbergs of the world were when they became multi-billionaires and changed the face of the planet, but did you know that the average age of entrepreneurship is forty-seven? There is something to be said about life experience, an expanded brain capacity, a desire for meaning making, and discovery of self that can only be achieved in time and with age. Not only do our lives have peaks and valleys, but so does our creative and big picture-thinking potential. According to neuropsychologist and cognitive neuroscientist Elkhonen Goldberg, “our creative yield increases with age.” This is not what the Forbes 30 Under 30 list would lead us to hypothesize. But brain science proves otherwise!
Furthermore, curiosity is a virtue and a gift that many late bloomers possess. As global marketing consultant and business author Don Peppers said in Inc., “People should consider it a moral obligation to be curious about things. Not being curious is not only intellectually lazy, but it shows a willful contempt for the facts.” He goes on to say, “Curiosity, however, is also an act of rebellion, and as such it requires moral courage.” It takes strength to be curious, but the rewards are endless.
All Unsettled participants possess an inherent curiosity of themselves and the world around them, and it is this burning curiosity that fuels the deep connections and discoveries that are fostered and grown in the communities that we create together. The diversity of age range and life experience that we have on each retreat seems to melt away in magical ways. Retreats are just as rewarding and impactful for our participants in their 50s, 60s and 70s as for our participants in their 20s. You became so much more than a mid-30s financial analyst from Northern California. Rather when you metaphorically step through our doors you are a curious misfit who refuses to settle in your pursuit of growth, meaning, and adventure.