It was probably NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) that first introduced me to the power of question. The supposition is that each person is using their own language and to achieve optimal communication it is necessary to crack the speaker’s code, in order to get where they are coming from. So how do you go about this? Basically, you ask them a question and the feedback you receive in the answer is an indicator of how they view the world.
Now many people may think this is solely pertinent to a therapeutic setting. Yet, as the saying goes, as you do one thing, you do them all. Accordingly, if you go through everyday life and interactions never questioning anything, how will you ever know what you know or what others think? And who really cares? Just think of the party game, “Broken Telephone” where an idea is whispered from one person to the next, without any questions allowed, until the last person says out loud what they was whispered to them. Many a laugh has ensued when the original idea is revealed and is usually a far cry from the initial utterance.
I recently consciously started to really apply question to everything and anything. Having always been a natural questioner, as most children are, I had it drummed out of me at an age, until eventually I just stopped asking questions, or at least to grown ups or out load :-). Just this simply action of asking a question for everything has created so much greater possibilities in my life. It has been said that the question empowers, whereas the answer disempowers. It took me a while to really understand this dynamic and yet I did observe more and more how when someone asks a question, everyone, myself included feels obliged to give an answer. Mind you, not just any answer – it has to be the RIGHT answer. So where’s the empowerment in finding the right answer?
I recently participated in a training course as a participant. Very early on, I started to observe what was – and this is purely my interesting point of view – the facilitator’s lack of questioning. There was very little actual reformulation and checking back with the speaker to make sure that the question had been understood, but rather a rush to file the answer. This is on a cognitive level, however the energetic dynamic at play here, come from the inability to receive.
Initially, as a participant and a teacher in my own right, I found myself in re-action and feeling thraughted as each time I asked a question or gave feedback, the reply or answer felt like a punch to my solar-plexus. Don’t you just love Energy ? It never lies ! 🙂 After a while, I began to ask questions about the dynamics of what was going on. Needless to say there was a lot of information there – way above the initial knee-jerk re-action I was having.
I suppose that in addition to having come away with a new and exciting modality, I came away with a clear picture of how important it is to ask a question. Never assume, because it makes an ass out of u and me ! Asking a question is a great way to gauge the temperature of the room, so to speak. It also takes a willingness to be the question and to be in total allowance of what shows up. You may not like what shows up, because the power of the question is that it reveals the good, the bad and the ugly. However, is having awareness around what is really going on, not an advantage? Would you rather know than not? I suppose it comes down to what you choose. For me personally, the power of the question lies in its capacity to reveal what so often lies hidden behind words.
Question has opened up so many greater possibilities in my life. In conclusion, the power to BE ME.
With Gratitude, Light and Laughter.