Ask a Great Question – Post #1

Ask A Great Question Series

You cannot solve a problem from the same the level of consciousness that created it
— - Albert Einstein

This series of blog posts, entitled, “Ask A Great Question,” is intended to help you approach challenges, problems, and goals differently than you may have in the past. When you ask a great question, you approach the topic from a different perspective, often one that you have not considered before. This can be a powerful tool in enhancing our awareness and understanding of why we behave the way we do. Starting by asking a great question can also help us change our attitude, habits, behaviors, and results. This technique changes lives because the only questions we can answer are the ones we think to ask.

Alternatives to “Why?”

When clients struggle with deeply ingrained habits, such as overeating, criticizing themselves, or working themselves to burnout, the first question they ask after they become aware of their patterns is “Why?”

  • “Why do I keep eating when I am no longer hungry?”
  • “Why do I dread going to work, even though I love my patients.”
  • “Why do I keep struggling with the same issues in my life, even though I know better?”
  • “Why am I not exercising when it usually makes me feel better?”
  • “Why can’t I get along with my teenager? This relationship is important to me.”

I get excited when my clients ask these types of questions, and they rarely appreciate it, since they view these questions as expressions of frustration. For a coach, however, these questions indicate that a client is becoming:

  1. Aware, and
  2. Curious.

And curiosity begets understanding, which, combined with compassion, vision, persistence (and a few other learnable life skills) yields PROGRESS. Progress can manifest as anything from lasting behavioral change (quitting smoking, taking up tennis, not yelling at your teenager) to improved self-confidence, to creating a life that makes your heart sing. Curiosity is POWER.

When clients start asking “Why,” I encourage them to change their perspective by asking “What?” or “How?”

  •  “What would I rather do than eat right now?”
  • “How would my work life be different if I had more time for me?”
  • “What can I learn from this setback?”
  • “What would it take for me to find 10 minutes every day for exercise?”
  • “What is already going well in my relationship with my daughter?”

Same issues. Different questions. New perspective. Total game changer.


Want to learn more?

Click here to read the next post in this series. Want coaching or a speaker for your organizations next conference? Click here and let me know how I can help.

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