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Embracing Shoshin: The Beginner's Mind

Before my mother died in 2010, she embraced a Zen path and studied Zen Buddhism until she became a sensei a month before her passing. One the lessons we discussed revolved around the concept of the beginner's mind: the mind that is open to possibility.

Similar to the Western ideal of a growth mindset, the beginner's mind embraces each experience from a place of innocent wonder. Each moment holds unlimited potential. From this perspective, innovation and creativity flourish.

Most of us have experienced this state of being when we try something new. For me, writing my first novel was like this - my imaginary characters wove a story in my thoughts that I was compelled to write. No matter how tired I was, how much stress the day job had created, I was eager to rush home, finish chores and work on my novel.

Every part of the experience was new - from the initial drafting to having my work critiqued, to learning the publication process. I soaked it all in, excited with each step, e…

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