‘As long as you ask questions you are breaking through, but the moment you begin to accept, you are psychologically dead. So right through life don’t accept a thing, but inquire, investigate. Then you will find that your mind is something really extraordinary, it has no end, and to such a mind there is no death.’ — Jiddu Krishnamurti
When I was training as a coach with the International Coach Academy, most trainers underlined the importance of asking questions.
I learnt that it is empowering to support people to find their answers, insights, truth and wisdom.
The coach and the clients are co-creators and partners in a good coaching relationship. Many people know the pain of being told what to do, feeling patronised or not validated. For some of us, this cooperative aspect is essential because it strengthens the muscle of self-responsibility and self-trust.
I often heard my clients saying, ‘oh, that was an excellent question!’ Usually, they would change facial expressions as if they were having an ‘aha’ moment. Suddenly, they realised something new about themselves, shifted perspective, or released a limiting belief.
From my experience of working with many coaches, therapists, and mentors, I know that I always felt uplifted when they approached me with respect and curiosity. I felt seen and supported when they asked valuable questions.
Not all questions stimulate the mind and imagination in the same way. For example, a closed question offers limited acceptable answers, usually yes or no. On the other hand, open questions stimulate enquiry, self-reflection, knowledge and learning.
‘It is not the answer that enlightens, but the question.’ — Eugène Ionesco.
I wrote the list of questions below, hoping it can enrich your process and that you can find some inspiration. You can start and then go back to it. You can follow what feels good to you right now. It’s great to sit with all questions or choose only one, dedicating a week to this inquiry in a mindful way or only a few moments.
You can pick up a question and dance or meditate with it. Or you can put some music on and journal about it while you sit under the shade of a tree. You can trust your gut and choose what resonates the most with you. This article calls to stimulate your imagination, strengthen your resources, self-responsibility and explore your sense of connection with yourself and the world around you. I hope that these questions will give you tools to open up your creativity and be in service of all life while you navigate the great sea of the unknown.
Feel free to take what feels useful for now and let go of what doesn’t resonate.
Maybe you will create a collage, plant seeds, write a song or hear some answers in your dreams thanks to this enquiry. Perhaps you can reach out to a couple of friends and do this together as a way to support one another or ask them some of these questions.
You will know what speaks to you. I trust that your soul will whisper you something beautiful that is worth cherishing.
Here are my questions for you!
- What do you appreciate the most in yourself, life and others?
- What is your relationship with the living world around you?
- What is your relationship with your imagination?
- What is your relationship with your breath?
- What is your relationship with your creativity?
- What does spirituality mean to you?
- What does to be whole mean to you?
- What does being radical mean to you?
- What does to be wild mean to you?
- What does to be wise mean to you?
- What does to be grounded mean to you?
- What does to be embodied mean to you?
- What does it mean to you to follow your intuition?
- What is the legacy that you want to leave behind you?
- What is sacred for you?
- If your ancestors had a message for you, what that would be?
- What do you feel connected to?
- Which are the relationships that you want to strengthen right now?
- How is your life/how do you feel when you experience separation?
- How is your life/how do you feel when you experience connection?
- If Mother Earth would speak through you, what would she say?
- What are you grateful for?
- What do you do when you feel inspired, in ‘the zone,’ and empowered?
- What do you do when you feel fully connected to yourself, your community, and the web of life?
- Suppose you recall a time when you felt alive, passionate, vibrant, and connected to the world around you. What is the learning that you can draw from that experience?
- If you imagine yourself in five years, what are the things you would want to create and be the most connected to? What needs to happen next?
- What would you do if you were to choose some simple actions every day to nourish the connections that matter the most to you?
- What would you say if you could write a letter to your younger self?
- What does magic mean to you?
- If you imagine your virtuous cycle, what do you see in it?
- If you could approach your current circumstances from a place of play and curiosity, what would you do differently?
- What are your most significant resources?
- How do you nurture and take care of yourself?
- What was your wildest dream when you were a child?
- Which message do you have for the next generation?
- What makes your heart sing?
- What matters to you the most?
- What do you need to let go of? What does need to die?
- If you would live every day as if it was the last, what would you do differently?
- What do you need to forgive yourself?
- To whom do you need to ask for forgiveness?
- What is your medicine? What are your unique gifts?
- When did you play the last time?
- What does innocence mean to you?
- What does make you laugh?
- When was the last time that you felt surprised?
- When was the last time you felt in awe and a sense of wonder?
- What does it mean to you to give?
- What does it mean to you to receive and be supported?
- What is your relationship like with the animal and the non-human world?
- How do you connect with the earth inside and around you?
- How do you connect to the fire inside and around you?
- How do you connect to the water inside and around you?
- How do you connect to the air inside and around you?
- What are the most significant challenges that you overcame?
- How can you transform your struggles into an adventure?
- How do you relate to the archetype of the wounded healer?
- How do you relate to the archetype of the sacred fool?
- How do you relate to the archetype of the crone?
- How do you relate to the archetype of the magician?
- How do you relate to the archetype of the lover and sacred union within?
- What is the song that you never wrote?
- How can you bring more joy into your life?
- How can you make your shadow more conscious?
- What does need to come into the light?
- How can you include all of yourself and uncomfortable feelings?
- What are the kindest things you could say to yourself when something difficult arises?
- How can you create more beauty in your life?
- What are your commitments?
- Who do you need to be and become to honour all the above?
So, that’s it for now! Thank you! Please feel free to get in touch or post a comment below and let me know how the exercise landed for you, what resonated the most, or which questions you found the most helpful.
I look forward to hearing from you.