The TOP 3 Questions in Life to Answer
By: Deb Maes
May 15, 2013
Having conducted thousands of coaching sessions, with people from all walks of life, from all over the globe, I’ve discovered that EVERYONE seeks to answer these three questions:
1. Who am I? 2. Who are you? 3. What am I supposed to be doing?
Why? Answering these questions relate to our safety and survival. We are ‘Social Beings’ (some say ‘Pack Animals’) and we can not function in isolation, and so we have to be part of a group. To do this, we need to; understand our self, recognize if another person’s behavior is including or rejecting us, if they can be trusted, and what contribution we can make to the group.
We may not notice that we are asking these questions, and in fact we may not be overtly or consciously, but pay attention to how you respond to situations and you’ll recognise that your brain is wired to be seeking information that helps you answer these questions. Think about it. It makes sense as you think about that, doesn’t it?
How do we answer these questions? Let’s talk about, ‘Who am I’?
There are many ways we seek to understand ourselves. Here are the top 3 strategies.
Pay attention to the things that stir your emotions, both positive and negative emotions. When you notice that something inspires or annoys you, you can ask yourself, how is that true of me? As well as revealing your values, it points to the area of personal development where you can put your attention. This enables you to use your personal potential much more, work on areas that need improving, utilize your strengths more and gain awareness of your ‘blind spot’.
Notice what attracts or repels you – what catches your attention. These things reveal your likes and dislikes. This helps to reveal your values – what is important to you. You can then start to describe yourself using these characteristics and put your time and focus on the things that bring you satisfaction.
Watch how others respond and interact with you. Noticing specifically what you are doing when you are attracting people and when things aren’t going how you like, informs you of your strengths and weaknesses so you can modify your behavior.
So, which is the most common strategy? The answer is number 3. Because other people are external to us we can notice what others are doing more easily that what we are doing. It is where our eyes are pointed – looking at the outside world, so naturally we see and pay attention to this.
Strategy 3 is the least useful and thwarted with danger. Another person’s behavior is influenced by many other factors. There is a life-time of experiences and thoughts that will impact another person’s choice of behaving and responding in any moment, so it isn’t clean feedback.