I was first introduced to Wonder Wandering when I was exploring a career shift. I wanted to toss out a potential interest and just play around with where it might take me so I could try on different prospects and see how they felt. Simply discussing options with others did not give me the information I was looking for. Often they would either try to solve the problem or just not get the playful nature I craved to explore alternatives.
When I was lamenting my dilemma to a friend, he suggested the Wonder Game. I wasn’t familiar with it, but when he described it, it was exactly what I had been looking for. After playing it, I decided to call it Wonder Wandering because as you freely wonder you naturally wander to new, uncharted places. Here’s the gist. One person starts with an idea. The other person has to build on it. You go back and forth until you hit on something that you want to explore more, answer your question, or you exhaust all ideas. The conversation wanders wherever it needs to. If you exhaust all ideas, that is an indication what you were wondering about is not right for you.
Here’s how our Wonder Wandering went:
My friend: “I wonder what it would feel like to be a coach?”
Me: “I wonder if it would be better to be a mentor than a coach?”
My friend: “I wonder why being a mentor would be better?”
Me: “I wonder if coach is an overused word and mentor implies experience?”
My friend: “I wonder if being an intuitive mentor is a thing?”
Me: “I wonder what an intuitive mentor is?”
And so forth.
Wonder Wandering about my next steps resulted in letting go of the pressure I was putting on myself—pressure that was blocking any chance of seeing what I am passionate about (see Life Purpose or Purpose in Life).
Wonder Wandering can be used any time you want to look at options or play with new ideas. The technique works to review life experiences, consider job options, decide where to live, pick a vacation spot, or explore potential solutions to problems. Wonder Wandering allows ideas that may seem scary to be explored in a non-pressure way. The important thing is to keep open-minded, let ideas flow, and allow the conversation to wander wherever it needs to.