Okay... can we talk about something for a minute here? I want to talk about questions. I love questions, why? because they lead to answers, answers lead to growth, and growth leads to discovery, and discovery... leads to more questions. There are so many unanswered questions in life, why would you not ask questions!! But what gets me more than someone not asking questions is someone asking stupid questions.
That's right, I said stupid questions. Your momma lied when she said there is no such thing as a stupid question... there is. So many of you are now itching to find out, "JEN!!! Just what are these stupid questions and how can I prevent myself from such humiliation? I must know!!!" Well my friend, it is quite simple to be honest. There are two types of stupid questions, let's evaluate shall we?
1. THE PURPOSELESS QUESTION
Have you ever caught your self asking a question for no point but to just ask a question? Or the fact that it's purely by habit? Like shouting "Hey! How are you?" as you rush past someone in order to get somewhere else... the fact is that you aren't really listening for the answer, you may hear it, but it's not like you are going to carry on a conversation, I mean, you have to be somewhere! But we've gotten into the habit of asking questions for the sake of conversation. We stick to the questions that hold no personal
- How's life? - How's work? - How are you? - How's the family? - How are the kids? - What's new?
How many of those questions have you asked... all of them? I know, me too. That's right, I am my own worst enemy when it comes to this pet peeve of mine. On top of the fact that these questions hold no real value, the answers are about as boring as the questions.
- Life's good... - Works okay... - I'm fine... - The family's alive... - Kids are good... - Not much...
Case and point. You ask a stupid question and you get a stupid answer.
Now some of you might be offended at this point arguing that you are genuinely interested in peoples lives when you ask these questions. So here is my question for you... Do your questions strengthen your relationship with that person? Do they show that you are interested in them or just in conversation? I mean, if you were actually interested in that person you wouldn't ask "how's life?" you would ask "What were you up to this weekend?"; you wouldn't ask "How's work?" you would ask "How are you enjoying your job?" ... See the difference? You would want to know about their life, their opinions and what drives them!
If we take the time to ask a question instead of just rattling off the ol' faithfuls we open the gates to get to know the person on the other side of the conversation and not just a conversation.
2. THE UNASKED QUESTION
I've come up with a motto in my life, if it doesn't get out of your head it doesn't become a part of life. Until you say something out loud, even if it's just to yourself, it doesn't become reality. Saying something out loud allows us to really process what we are thinking, we no longer have the privilege of justifying something in our head, to the moon and back, just so we are guaranteed to hear the answer that we want to hear.
I think that sometimes we are too afraid to ask a question because the content of the answer may not be what we want to hear. In fact, I can assure you 9 times out of 10 it won't be. So why am I calling this a stupid question, especially when there is no question being asked? That's just it. By not asking those daunting questions we refuse to hear what we need to hear. We plug our ears, shake our heads, and fill the room with a booming "LA, LA, LA, LA, LA" in order to drown out the question until we can't hear it anymore. These questions vary, and to be honest, for me to give some examples wouldn't really do the unasked questions justice. In fact ,all I could think of were personal experiences. Experiences that I look back on and shake my head, knowing that life could have moved on a little quicker if I only bucked up and asked those questions. When I finally decided to confront the questions I found a close friend who I trusted and poured out my heart. I received the answers that I didn't want to hear, I made the changes that I needed to make, I stumbled through the healing and embraced the my life which led to so much more than I could have imagined.
If you are afraid to ask the question... then you already know the answer. The longer you wait for to ask, the harder the change will be, the longer the healing takes and the longer it will take you experience a way of life unknown... scary? yes.... worth it? absolutely.
I thought through this post as I was writing it, I briefly thought about it, but there is thought there. At the end of the day The Purposeless Question is something that really gets my goat... and believe me I hate it when people take my goat. In all fairness it was more of a rant, and possibly a message for some people out there... But the Unasked Questions, they are too often ignored and well, left to drown in your own thoughts and forgotten. Once I had finally come to the realization that ignoring the hard questions makes life harder, not easerie (and believe me, It took quite a while). I made the choice one day that from that moment on, I would ask ALL questions; the naive ones, the silly ones, the easy ones, the difficult ones, the challenging ones, and the questions I didn't want to ask. I would never again wait too long to ask a question that I needed to ask.
So here's my question to you:
Are you asking... or shall I say not asking... the hard questions?
Now I shall leave you with a wee bit of humor