Ten questions to ask yourself to help you create the life you want. But why ask the questions? Because personal inquiry is the key to gaining insight into who you are and whether your subconscious beliefs work for you.
1. What do I really want?
This first of the ten questions to ask yourself is perhaps one of the most difficult to answer. Mostly because we try to fit in with what other people want. Every day spent doing what is expected of us, required of us, or desired of us, takes us further away from being our authentic self. Lost in a plethora of demands to be, do and have what everyone else needs from us, we lose sight of what makes us come alive. Our own wants and desires become so distant we forget them.
In order to tune into what we want, we must first discern the difference between what makes us happy for the moment, and what will bring a sense of true fulfilment. So, what is it that, if you achieve it, will make your feel fulfilled?
2. Should I really change?
To answer this question, it’s vital to know who and what you are right now. Look in the mirror and ask yourself if you really want to change. And if so, into what? Is it really you that demands that you change? Or is it an inner critical voice, perhaps a snide whisper from the past, echoing the judgements and long forgotten utterances of those who couldn’t change themselves? Who is asking you to change?
3. What’s the bright side in all of this?
Out of all the ten questions to ask yourself, this is one of the most difficult. When life serves up a shitstorm, it’s easy to get caught up in the drama and victim mentality. When so much is happening around us, there seems to be no room for even considering that light at the end of the tunnel. But if you stop for a few minutes and ask yourself ‘What could be good about this situation?’ you’ll discover that your mind will begin to inch towards a solution to the problem. To begin with, your mind will tell you that there’s nothing good at all. Persist. Eventually you’ll train your mind to become solution focussed and it will come up with all sorts of benefits that you hadn’t thought of.
4. Am I comfortable with what I’m doing?
The answer to this question, out of all the ten questions to ask yourself, will reveal what your internal sat-nav, otherwise as your feelings and emotions, are telling you. There’s great wisdom in what you feel in any given moment. If it doesn’t feel right, the likelihood is that you should look for something that feels better. Many people want to leap from a situation that feels crap, to somewhere that feels fantastic. Yet the truth is that for the vast majority, such a huge jump feels inauthentic; and they end up sabotaging themselves back to what is familiar. Even if what is familiar isn’t what’s best for them. Small steps up the ‘better feeling’ ladder is the key to improving life. What tiny action can you take in this moment to make yourself feel more at ease with your inner being? What little thing can you do right now to bring yourself more into alignment to where you want to be, or to what you want to achieve? Then simply lather, rinse and repeat – by making manageable and incremental moves towards increasing your sense of wellbeing.
5. Have I done enough?
Have you? Or is there something more you want to do? Discontentment can be dangerous in large doses, especially if it leads to irrational behaviour. But in small amounts, what is termed ‘divine discontent’ can lead you to the realization that there’s more you want to do with your life. Lean into the sense of dissatisfaction and instead of allowing it to drag you down into frustration and annoyance, use it as the steam that gets the engine running towards your goals. There’s always more you can do to create the best in yourself. Push yourself. You will never stop wanting to be more, for yourself and those that matter to you, because your inner soul always seeks to expand itself.
6. Am I happy at where I am today?
The easiest way to feel happy is to make others happy. Send a ‘thank you’ note to a friend to express gratitude for him or her being in your life. Pay an acquaintance a genuine compliment and watch that person glow. Smile at a stranger and watch how you receive a beaming smile in response. Pay it forward at a café – give the server extra money and ask them to tell the next person they serve that today’s lunch is for free. After all, who doesn’t love to receive an unexpected surprise? And here’s the strange thing… Making the effort to do nice things for others will lift your spirits. Which in turn will make you that much happier than you are now.
7. Do I value myself?
Do you? This is a question for when you’re gazing in the mirror, looking deep into your own eyes. Examine what you allow for yourself. Do you accept second-best? Do you feel that everyone else is more important than you? When was the last time you took time out just for yourself? In what way can you start showing up for yourself? Do it. You’re worth it and your value is priceless.
8. How much could I have?
I suppose in this case there is no such thing as having too much or too little. It’s more about how badly do you really need it. And truthfully, do you actually need it, or is it just something you want to impress others, rather than yourself. And if you feel you need more than what you have now, are you willing to work for it? Because how prepared you are to go the extra mile for it, will determine whether you get it in the end.
9. What motivates me?
What motivates you? It’s whatever pushes you from the inside. It’s never an outside job, even when you think the end goal is for the benefit of someone else. The motivation will be from two things: the spark of joy the thought of achieving the goal provokes in you, and the belief you can achieve the goal. Motivation’s arch-enemy is procrastination, which is simply the fear that the goal is impossible. Belief is everything.
10. What Really Makes Me Tick?
Really the consideration is what actually ticks the box for you? What lights a fire under your backside that makes you want to go out and do stuff? What is it that when you think of it creates a luminosity in your soul? Whatever it is that gets the cogs of your mind into motion, gives clues to your inner drivers. Equally, what ticks you off shows what you allow to steal your innermost energy. To find out what makes you tick, notice your feelings and consciously question what causes them. Why are you experiencing that emotion? Is it your own reaction or how you were taught to react by others? Whether it’s a sensation of joy or an angry reaction; an emotion points to where personal inquiry will reveal the inner workings of your mind and a deeper knowledge of yourself. I suppose, of all the ten questions to ask yourself, this is the most difficult one to answer.
Review and Revise
Write the answers to these ten questions to ask yourself in a journal, and review and revise them regularly, is a great way to chart your progress towards an innate understanding of who you really are at your core.
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And there’s more…
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