In the Sign of Four, Sherlock Holmes explained to Watson that he abhorred stagnation, that he needed problems and work to feed his brain. His mental curiosity drives him seek solutions and find patterns. His curiosity enables Holmes to amass an incredible breadth and depth of knowledge. All of which assist with his famous deductions.
In conflict, curiosity is one of the greatest skills. For some people, when in conflict their natural curiosity shuts down. In its place is absolute certainty, even infallibility. In reality, we are all flawed and we are all able to contribute to a conflict or to its resolution.
Using our innate curiosity about what is driving the other person (i.e. need, fear or concern) can help to unlock possible options. In mediation, we seek out interests (the need, fear or concern) which underlie the position (i.e. the tangible, concrete demand). it can be difficult. Positions are loud and clear. Almost everyone in conflict can access their position, it usually begins with "I want...".
The reason why we have decided we want this is usually more opaque. The interest that is driving our position may be obscured by emotions including fear, anxiety or anger. It can be difficult for the other person in our conflict to determine what underlying need we are trying to meet. If we can understand our own interests and those of the other person then we can design more responsive options for resolution.
When I was studying at Pepperdine, one of my professors, Jim Craven, explained that as mediators we need to "harvest interests". Maintaining curiosity about the why of people asking for something, as well as understanding the what. Being naturally curious is a gift, it prompts further questions, it enables a deeper understanding. In conflict curiosity is a real asset.