Childhood is Naturally Mindful

As children, we are remarkably aware. We absorb and process information at a speed that we’ll never again come close to achieving. New sights, new sounds, new smells, new people, new emotions, new experiences: we are learning about our world and its possibilities. Everything is new, everything is exciting, everything engenders curiosity. And because of theinherent newness of our surroundings, we are exquisitely alert; we are absorbed; we take it all in. And what’s more, we remember: because we are motivated and engaged (two qualities we’ll return to repeatedly), we not only take the world in more fully than we are ever likely to do again, but we store it for the future. Who knows when it might come in handy?

But as we grow older, the blasé factor increases exponentially. Been there, done that, don’t need to pay attention to this, and when in the world will I ever need to know or use that? Before we know it, we have shed that innate attentiveness, engagement, and curiosity for a host of passive, mindless habits. And even when we want to engage, we no longer have that childhood luxury. Gone are the dayswhere our main job was to learn, to absorb, to interact; we now have other, more pressing (or so we think) responsibilities to attend to and demands on our minds to address. And as the demands on our attention increase—an all too real concern as the pressures of multitasking grow in the increasingly 24/7 digital age—so, too, does our actual attention decrease. As it does so, we become less and less able to know or notice our own thought habits, and more and more allow our minds to dictate our judgments and decisions, instead of the other way around. And while that’s not inherently a bad thing—in fact, we’ll be talking repeatedly about the need to automate certain processes that are at first difficult and cognitively costly—it is dangerously close to m8ndlessness. It's afine line between efficiency and thoughtlessness—and one that we need to take care not to cross


In our youth, we are curious and attentive to every detail surrounding us, not yet distinguishing by the usefulness of the information. As adults, we take everything for granted, ignoring the familiar and walking through life in a mindless state.

Folksonomies: attention meditation mindfulness

/family and parenting/children (0.540948)
/sports/walking (0.500160)
/business and industrial/chemicals industry/dyes and pigments (0.498798)

blasé factor increases (0.946268 (negative:-0.348893)), actual attention decrease (0.930523 (neutral:0.000000)), bad thing—in fact (0.909204 (negative:-0.326120)), mindless state (0.789426 (negative:-0.636437)), engenders curiosity (0.782158 (negative:-0.206879)), theinherent newness (0.748485 (positive:0.652291)), new smells (0.733583 (positive:0.431779)), mindless habits (0.729705 (negative:-0.706388)), New sights (0.717136 (positive:0.436624)), new emotions (0.714968 (positive:0.462662)), new sounds (0.710538 (positive:0.442763)), new people (0.710072 (positive:0.334356)), new experiences (0.709606 (positive:0.456382)), cognitively costly—it (0.706705 (negative:-0.428935)), innate attentiveness (0.705184 (positive:0.386973)), childhood luxury (0.691776 (neutral:0.000000)), n’t need (0.683825 (neutral:0.000000)), main job (0.682518 (negative:-0.410292)), afine line (0.681783 (neutral:0.000000)), certain processes (0.680027 (negative:-0.428935)), real concern (0.679225 (neutral:0.000000)), digital age—so (0.676458 (neutral:0.000000)), thought habits (0.669744 (negative:-0.374386)), world (0.577098 (positive:0.374344)), information (0.525933 (positive:0.530218)), demands (0.524858 (neutral:0.000000)), minds (0.511256 (neutral:0.000000)), usefulness (0.478559 (neutral:0.000000)), surroundings (0.465627 (positive:0.652291)), youth (0.462595 (positive:0.790884))

Psychology (0.940557): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Mind (0.823633): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Engagement (0.799262): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Cognition (0.696732): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Thought (0.664354): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Want (0.662856): dbpedia | freebase
Motivation (0.582764): dbpedia | freebase
Curiosity (0.558399): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc

 Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Konnikova , Maria (2013-01-03), Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes, Viking Adult, Retrieved on 2013-03-21
  • Source Material []
  • Folksonomies: psychology mindfulness


    22 MAR 2013

     Seeing, Observing, and Mindfulness

    Childhood is Naturally Mindful > Example/Illustration > Seeing VS Observing
    Most of us sleepwalk through life having lost our childhood sense of attention, Sherlock Holmes explains the difference between just seeing the world and observing it.
    23 MAR 2013

     The Sense of Wonder is Mindfulness

    Childhood is Naturally Mindful > Similarity > The Fairest Thing We Can Experience is the Mysterious
    Children are naturally mindful because they are in love with the world, scientists maintain that sense of wonder into adulthood.
    Folksonomies: wonder mindfulness
    Folksonomies: wonder mindfulness