In some of the eastern ways of thinking there is a concept, “Empty
your cup”. What does this mean? Emptying your cup at its most basic
just means that as you go to learn something new, you must set aside
but not forget what you already know.
Setting aside prejudices, preconceptions, opinions, prior experience
and immersing your mind and senses in the new pursuit. The search for
knowledge and experience demands that you make room for that
understanding. Applying this principle to any new skillset or
knowledge base is essential to success.
Being a student doesn’t stop when you get out of school, learning is a
lifelong activity. Our minds don’t know how to do anything else; they
absorb what we feed them, good or bad, TV, newspapers or books on
history and philosophy. Turning a learning curve into a conscious
decision has more benefits if you empty your cup first.
Opening the mind to new possibilities and wonders takes diligence and
perseverance. The next time you learn something new; take a moment
before you start and take a deep breath then clear your head of what
you think you know on the subject and simply take in what is read,
experienced or presented to you with an open mind.
Cultivating an empty cup is not that difficult, it takes some effort
but the benefits are worth it in the long run. Ask yourself, what can
I learn today? What do I want to learn today, this week, month, year?
Empty your cup and explore with a mind that holds on to nothing but
observes everything. See the world through the eyes of a child.