Ask Small Questions

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Small questions create a mental environment that welcomes unabashed creativity and playfulness.

One of the best ways to get your brain working creatively is to use the kaizen technique of asking small questions.

small questions
ask small questions

 “What shapes our lives are the questions we ask or refuse to ask or never think to ask” Sam Keen.

The author shares an experiment. Ask your friend the colour of the car parked next to hers. Your friend is likely to give an odd look and admit she has no idea. Repeat that question the next day and the day after that, by the fourth or the fifth day. As she parks her car her brain will remind her that she will be asked that silly question and she will have no choice but take note of the colour of the car beside hers.  

In the same way, our brains look for answers when we ask small questions repeatedly.

A question wakes our brains up and delights it.

Small questions keep our fight or flight response in an off position.

Posing the same question regularly and waiting patiently for an answer mobilizes the cortex. That’s why sometimes when we least expect like at bath time, while taking a walk or driving we get great ideas.

Even though our brains love questions and won’t reject them, big questions trigger fear and wake up the amygdala, which kicks in our flight or fight response and we don’t want that.

Negative questions are also powerful but they powerfully destroy our self-esteem.

Examples of negative questions; Why am I so stupid? Why is my life like this? Please don’t ask yourself these kinds of questions they churn weakness and enhances inadequacies. 

The author gives us some Kaizen techniques to practice. These questions are designed to help us develop new mental pathways and this requires patience and repetition. Try asking these questions regularly. You can also come up with your own.

  1. If you are trying to reach a specific goal, ask yourself what is one small step I can take toward reaching my goal? Be kind to yourself while asking. Harshness triggers fear and blocks creativity.
  2. If you are constantly in conflict with a person, whether boss or spouse. Everyday ask yourself what is one good thing about this person?
  3. If you tend to feel pessimistic or negative try asking yourself this question: what is one small thing that is special about me (my spouse, my job or my country)?

My Thoughts

Today I decided to record my thoughts in a video.

If you are visiting the page for the first time go here for the Introduction.

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