I recently read an article on Forbes.com that profoundly affected my perspective and gave me a swift kick in the ‘you know what’. The article was titled 35 Questions That Will Change Your Life (http://www.forbes.com/sites/jasonnazar/2013/09/05/35-questions-that-will-change-your-life/).
Sometimes we can get comfortable in our routines and we neglect reflecting on our actions and intentions. We can lose touch with our purpose and ourselves. The following questions are adapted from the article and they were the ones that created deep impact for me. As I read them and started to formulate my answers, I felt a grounding sense of clarity. I hope they will create the same feeling for you.
1. Why don’t you do the things you know you should be doing?
We all have the inner voice that reminds us of what we ‘should’ be doing. Instead of spiraling into a guilt tornado, perhaps we should ask ourselves what exactly it is that we are avoiding and/or procrastinating and why…
2. What are your values and are you being true to them?
Values exist in many areas of our lives including health, relationships, career, family, sex and spirituality. When you are not acting congruently with your values, you feel disconnected from your true self. Defining your values and acting in accordance with them will always make you feel more authentic.
3. What are you pretending not to know?
Stop playing stupid. We often know the right answers, but somehow we convince ourselves we don’t. As the author states, possibilities open up when we stop deceiving ourselves.
4. If you achieved all of your goals, how would you feel? How can you feel this along the way?
“Life is a journey, not a destination”. You’ve heard the saying a million times. I know that in my own personal life I have often felt a sense of let down after reaching the “goal” because I forgot to enjoy the process. Try imagining yourself crossing the metaphorical finish line – what do you feel? How can that sense of pride and accomplishment be with you today?
5. What did I learn today?
We learn something new each and every day; we just don’t often take the time to reflect on it. Take a moment to notice how you’ve grown and appreciate the knowledge you’ve gained on a daily basis.
6. If you weren’t scared, what would you do?
Fear is paralyzing and can hold us back from chasing our dreams. How many times have you had dinner with a friend where you talk about a new business idea that would be amazing, but you are too afraid to take action. We humans like comfort and familiarity, but imagine what is possible if you embrace fear and push through it?
7. Why not?
What can’t you be the best in the world? Why can’t you live the life you desire? Instead of making excuses, start thinking ‘Why not me”?.
8. What/Who did you make better today?
Making a positive impact in the lives of others is the true secret to happiness. Setting a daily intention to enrich someone else’s life will always bring joy to your life.
9. What can you do today to improve?
Each day presents an opportunity for personal, professional and physical growth. Take advantage of it.
10. What are we talking about? What problem are we solving?
How many times have you been in a meeting where things get off topic and everyone’s precious time is wasted? Start every important meeting or conversation with the questions above. If things start going astray, bring it back to the questions above. Value your time and the time of others and keep focus. The only time you should not be asking yourself these questions is during meditation J
11. Can I get it done now?
If there is something weighing on you and you need to get it done, ask yourself, “Can I get it done now”? The longer we put things off, the harder they are to complete. If you can get it done in 5 minutes or less, do it now!