Curiosity for Possibility: not just a State of Mind, but also a State of Brain


Curiosity is something that seems so commonplace that it has not received deeper thought and understanding. This presentation will describe and examine three aspects of curiosity that collectively create a state of mind that is reflected in a biochemical milieu in the brain. The necessary neural correlates will be presented as an interactive system that shifts the brain into the "toward state" (as described by Jaak Panksepp), positive emotions (as described by Barbara Fredrickson) and a receptive therapeutic state (as described by Milton Erickson and Ernest Rossi). Finally, a surprisingly simple set of principles will be put forward that can act as a foundation for any therapeutic method or technique to facilitate beneficial change for the client.


Curiosity research has identified two aspects – Curiosity for Deficit and Curiosity for Interest – which might be equally well described as Inquiry and Play. Little, however, has been done regarding the future aspect of curiosity – curiosity for possibility or purpose or meaning. Each of these aspects requires a slightly different context and mental frame. Equally each can contribute to the expression of the other. The degree to which one aspect may restrict another will be discussed as well as how curiosity can be turned on or off. What can the client do and, more importantly, what can the therapist do? The presentation ends with a short Q&A session with Richard Hill.



Duration (hrs): 1


CE Credits/ Approval:

Terms and Condtions