Questions are powerful tools. They can ignite hope and lead to new insights. They can also destroy hope and keep us stuck in bad assumptions. The key is to be intentional and choose our questions well. – Michael Hyatt
A few years ago, I was in a difficult position. I had been let go from my consultancy job, and I was looking for another job, but the circumstances at the time made getting a job a very difficult proposition, but I needed money, I needed an income and so no matter how difficult getting a job was, I still needed a job very badly, so I thought. After endless tweaking of my CV and sending out numerous applications, I got a chance to speak with PE, my mentor.
A 5 minute conversation turned my life around for good. He simply asked me. Ibukun what do you need? And confidently I replied, Sir, I need a job! (I was almost upset at the question when it was really clear that I’d not been working.)
Seeing that my mind is closed, he responded. Ibukun do you need a job or do you need money? For the first time, my intelligence embarrassed me, and I knew more than a job, I needed money, consistent money. He then further explained that a job is one of many ways to make money. Ibukun find other ways. Needless to say, the other ways gave birth to my Web Development Service, Working with this company and other avenues to make money.
There are two questions that you probably shouldn’t ask yourself or other people ever again.
1.) What do you want?
2.) What are your goals?
This excerpt from Tim Ferris’ book “The 4 Hour Week” [affiliate link] explains why:
“Most people will never know what they want. I don’t know what I want. If you ask me what I want to do in the next five months for language learning, on the other hand, I do know. It’s a matter of specificity. “What do you want?” is too imprecise to produce a meaningful and actionable answer. Forget about it.
“What are your goals?” is similarly fated for confusion and guesswork. To rephrase the question, we need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture.
Let’s assume we have 10 goals and we achieve them—what is the desired outcome that makes all the effort worthwhile? The most common response is what I also would have suggested five years ago: happiness. I no longer believe this is a good answer. Happiness can be bought with a bottle of wine and has become ambiguous through overuse.
There is a more precise alternative that reflects what I believe the actual objective is. Bear with me. What is the opposite of happiness? Sadness? No.
Just as love and hate are two sides of the same coin, so are happiness and sadness. Crying out of happiness is a perfect illustration of this. The opposite of love is indifference, and the opposite of happiness is—here’s the clincher—boredom.
Excitement is the more practical synonym for happiness, and it is precisely what you should strive to chase. It is the cure-all. When people suggest you follow your “passion” or your “bliss,” I propose that they are, in fact, referring to the same singular concept: excitement. This brings us full circle. The question you should be asking isn’t, “What do I want?” or “What are my goals?” but “What would excite me?””
So, let me ask you: what will excite you? Write it down, evaluate it and if good, pursue it. Leave me a comment.
Back to questioning, Michael Hyatt gives these 4 tips to ask better, more empowering questions:
1.) Become conscious of the questions you are asking yourself.
2.) Evaluate these questions: Is this a good question? If not, what’s a better one?
3.) Choose the better question. Be intentional.
4.) Write down the answers that your brain serves up. Act on these insights.
Question: What would asking different questions make possible for you? You can leave a comment by Clicking Here