Ask Better Questions
IN THIS EPISODE:
- Dead end questions
- The importance of open-ended questions
Hello hello hello- welcome back my friends.
And if this is your first time – welcome to you – I’m so happy you are here.
I’ve had some back to back travel weekends and I’m looking forward to getting some things done around the house this weekend.
You guys – we are heading towards the end of June – where does time go to?
No pun intended – I know this is a podcast centered around your time but it does sometimes feel like it flies by right?
Ok – let’s not waste a minute more – let’s dive in – this week I want to talk about an area I think we can all use some improvement on.
And that is – asking better questions.
Why is this important? Lol – oh – well that’s a great question right? Lol
Ok – lets chat about why this matters.
First – have you asked yourself any of the following –
Why can’t I seem to get anything done?
How come I can’t lose those last pesky pounds?
Why can’t my spouse ever seem to get it?
And then what are some of the answers you come up with
When you ask yourself why you can’t get anything done does your brain tell you things like –
Because you have no control over your calendar or
Because it never ends or because
You are the only one that can do it right
If I’m working with clients focusing on their weight and they ask why themselves why they can’t lose the weight I hear things like –
Because I love sweets
Because this is how I was brought up or
Because I’ve never been able to in the past.
And why can’t your spouse ever seem to get it?
I’m sure you have a list..lol..
But what I want to show you is this – look at all the thoughts- or answers you come up with when you have those questions.
This recently happened to a client of mine – she was leaving me a message – we do live coaching and voicemail – and she was frustrated asking herself what is wrong with her – why cant’ she get this right?
You guys – think about it – when you ask these questions your brain tells you everything that is wrong with you.
And that doesn’t feel so fabulous would you agree?
Being aware of the questions you ask yourself is an incredibly important tool we can use every single day.
And – it’s free my friends.
And you know what else – everyone is able to use it.
The problem is this: no one ever teaches us how to use questions effectively, and many of you are actually using questions in a really destructive way.
The way that you are using questions is actually preventing you from changing, it’s keeping you stuck, and it’s making it so that it’s difficult to make headway on your habits.
Here’s the thing – when you ask yourself questions you are sending your brain on a mission and then you’re coming up with thoughts that answer that question.
So the questions I just mentioned are what we call dead end questions. They are set up to find the negative right?
And let’s not get judgemental here – that is how the brain has been designed- to find the negative and protect us.
And that was important when we lived in caves… but last I checked we’ve moved up from there – omg – I almost just broke out into the Jefferson’s song – do you remember that show? Lol..
But seriously – these are the questions that keep you stuck, that get you no where.
So instead, you want to begin asking yourself what we call – powerful questions. They start from a more positive place.
They are open ended.
They are compassionate – I always stress the importance of compassion when working with my 1:1 clients. It’s really where we get the best results.
And asking yourself powerful questions will have you start thinking differently.
And you know what happens when you start thinking differently?
You guessed it – you start getting new results.
The reason they are powerful is because they open up space for inquiry and insight.
The higher quality the question, the higher quality the answer will be.
So a powerful question may look like – how can I get all of this done and have fun?
Or – how can I take care of my body in a way that makes me feel comfortable in my own skin?
Or – What do you want to create in your life? This is such a good one. I ask this on my free consult calls and I think most people haven’t even taken the time to consider this one… it’s a biggie – you should ask yourself this one for sure.
Now your brain will go to town looking for answers on these questions which will help you move in the direction of change.
Now I want to caution you – sometimes what happens is you ask yourself a powerful question and then you say – I don’t know.
These are 3 words I never allow my clients to say.
Here’s why- when you say I don’t know you shut down any access to finding the answer.
I don’t know will keep you stuck.
I always like to suggest you take a guess – if you did know what would you come up with?
Or the other option is to think something more like – Im figuring it out – or I’m learning new ways…
OK – so now we know – when you ask great questions you get great answers.
And the answers you come up are simply thoughts.
It’s so interesting right – because now we have the thoughts out and we are aware – and you know I always say being aware it step one.
So you know what you are thinking.
Next – ask yourself – why am I choosing to think that?
I think this is so important because a lot of times we tell ourselves we have no control.. over our schedule, or our food, or what we drink.
And the fact is – we have complete control.
You control what you think.
It might not always seem like we do – but all thoughts are optional.
So get curious – why are you choosing to think that? It’s actually quite empowering to ask yourself this and show your brain you are in control.
And then ask yourself how does that thought feel?
How you feel is everything – because how you feel is what drives your actions. So if you are feeling overwhelmed, shame, frustration what do you do?
Vs – when you feel determined, confident, committed.
So if the feeling doesn’t’ seem to serve you you get to decide if you want to keep thinking that thought.
You can even ask yourself – How do you want to feel?
This is a bit of next level thinking but I will share with you – if you ask yourself how you want to feel and find that feeling – the next thing you want to consider is – what would you need to think in order to feel that way.
I won’t get too far off the path but it is super fascinating.
Now listen – I also think one simple question to start could begin making a difference for you today.
So often we go through life just doing our thing right- like on automatic pilot.
But check in this week.
At least begin asking yourself why?
Why are you doing what you are doing?
Is it getting you to the place you want to be in life?
Understand you can make changes – everything is a choice.
OK – that is what I have for you today my friends.
Oh – I have one more question for you – if you are loving this podcast would you be so kind to leave a rating and review – I would be so appreciative. The ratings and reviews on itunes helps other people find the podcast and I want to keep spreading the word to help more people like you.
Thank you in advance for any assistance with this mission.
Ok – let’s circle back next week – but for now – make it a great day- take care!