Definition: Say something in order to obtain an answer or some information. Request to do or give something. To invite someone to go somewhere or do something.
As I prepare for this week’s post and entertaining several words wondering which one I would like to express my views about one word just kept popping in my mind and that was the word “ASK!” It is such a simple three letter word but has such a powerful impact on how we could live our lives day in and day out. So why don’t you pour yourself a cup of coffee or favorite cup of tea. This morning I am sipping on a scrumptious blend of cinnamon orange spice tea. Mmmm the flavor ignites my soul!
I absolutely love watching my grandchildren grow up. There is something magically different in being a grandparent. Maybe it is our awareness of how quickly time passes and the full sense of responsibility for their life is not ours but placed upon their parents. In most cases this truly changes our perspective and relationship. Each one of them are uniquely designed and have different needs and personalities, yet I find the three that can verbalize never hesitates to ask questions or express their desires. Their simple little innocence and curiosity sparks interest within that truly amazes me. Most of their questions usually start with, “Gigi why…” I believe the “why” questions help make sense of the world around them which spurs and accelerates their learning. It helps build concepts, skills, vocabulary and understanding of the unknown. It is our responsibility to channel their curiosity and need to know why so that we can help foster learning in a positive way. Yet as they get older the questions sometimes get harder and half the time we may not have the answer! That’s when I say let’s wait and ask your mommy or daddy!” LOL….
Let’s think about it even as adults we ask questions daily. I must admit I am so thankful for the internet and the wonderful search engines like google, lyos, mapquest, bing, ask engine etc. At a fingertip it blows my mind how much information can be generated by simply typing in a word, and BAM it appears from the web or input from live people. We can even ask Siri on our phones or tablets a question, in my case most of the time I just get frustrated as Siri doesn’t seem to understand my lingo…actually I changed Siri from a female response to a male British voice he doesn’t get on my nerves as much when he doesn’t understand my question.
Just for grins I typed into google the most commonly asked question of 2015…do you know what it was? You will be shocked, “What’s zero divided by zero?” was the most commonly googled question…now that is really sad because for most of us who passed third grade we know the answer is simply 0. Are people just testing google? Are they looking for a different answer? It made me laugh!
If it is so obvious that asking questions is such a powerful way of learning why do we sometimes stop asking questions? For some people the reason is that they are lazy. They assume they know all the main things they need to know and they do not bother to ask more. They cling to their beliefs and remain certain in their assumptions – yet they often end up looking foolish.
Other people are afraid that by asking questions they will look weak, ignorant or unsure. They like to give the impression that they are decisive and in command of the relevant issues. They fear that asking questions might introduce uncertainty or show them in a poor light. In fact asking questions is a sign of strength and intelligence – not a sign of weakness or uncertainty. Great leaders constantly ask questions and are well aware that they do not have all the answers
I know when I went through Sales training we were taught to stay away from a close-ended question where the other party could simply answer by stating “Yes” or “No”. We were encouraged to ask Open Ended questions. This was simply a way to state a high-value question that would create a deeper understanding and learning experience for all parties involved. I learned it is an art of blueprinting. To me it is a better form of communication and connection to get a full understanding of the topic you are discussing. Asking many questions is very effective but it can make you appear to be inquisitive and intrusive. So it is important to ask questions in a friendly and non threatening way. It even worked later on in life with my teenagers…even though they would have really rather just have stated Yes or No…I made it where they couldn’t and it took us to another level of understanding. Now that I am an empty-nester it is even more important for my husband and I to communicate and share our feelings, desires and wants. After 31 years of marriage we still can’t always read each other’s mind completely so we must ask those open ended questions to give us the desired results we are looking for.
As I was “Takin Time Out” this week and in reading my devotional Matthew 7:7 was perfect verse “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Please notice the first word in this verse is ask…what this means to me is we must be in direct communication with God. We must keep in mind that he is not a cosmic genie who serves us on a whim but we must cry out…ask direct questions…seek him each and every day and through his perfect timing the results will be revealed. It may take a few months or even years. During which time we we must stay faithful, steady and have patience. God is in control.
So what about YOU…this week let’s try to practice asking more questions in your everyday conversations. Instead of telling someone something, ask them a question. Intelligent questions stimulate, provoke, inform and inspire. Questions help us to teach as well as to learn. Until next time enjoy your week and let’s make August and inquisitive month by simply asking…