28 hours of hell, or is it?

I am writing this blog on board and Air France plane having just taken off from Bordeaux Airport at 15:45. This leg of the journey will take us to Paris where will land at 16:45. We then have a few hours to kill before the next leg to Dubai leaving at 21:50. This arrives at 06:30 before the final leg to Durban, leaving at 10:20 and arriving at 16:45. And did I forget to mention that I am doing this on my own with my 7 year old boy? As I type he is lying on my lap listening to my music.

So why I am I writing a blog about this journey? This journey could go in one of two ways — disaster or fun for both of us and it is completely in my hands which way it is going to go. I could look at this through the eyes of a 38 year old adult or through the eyes of a 7 year old child. One will frustrate both of us and one will make the journey a complete adventure. The choice is mine as the adult and not the choice of a 7 year old.

And yet how many of us will try to dictate what happens and expect someone to follow. We will view the world through our own eyes, using the mental models that we have built up over time. This will lead to the outcome that we are predicting. However if you turn your mental models off or even better reframe them through the eyes of a 7 year old you will learn something new and truly unique. Traveling over 27 hours with a kid can be great fun. Start seeing what they see, start listening to the questions they ask, truly understand where their questions are coming from and see what they enjoy observing.

This is a skill that we need to re-learn. We once had this but through experience and time we have lost it. We use the past to predict the present, we think we know but we don’t, we assume.

So if you have a child or niece or nephew spend quality time with them. Take them on an adventure of their choice and behave exactly as they would — I promise you will learn something incredible.

Originally published at tetrakey.com on May 19, 2017.